Today, I co-hosted a symposium initiated by Deborra-lee Furness Jackman on adoption and the plight of so many homeless orphans and other children from all over the world. My co-hosts included Dr. Jane Aronson, Tina Brown, Isabella Rossellini, and Alfre Woodard. Journalist Tina Brown opened the controversial conversation while Cynthia McFadden, herself an adopted child, moderated the panel of incredibly honest, passionate, and serious women who work and/or deal and/or live this reality. All of the panelists spoke incredibly well but I was especially touched by Susan L. Bissell of UNICEF and Deann Borshay Liem, the Korean filmmaker who herself was mistakenly given up for adoption by a corrupt foster care system.
It is heartbreaking to confront the enormity of helpless children (both internationally and domestically), very few of which can be adopted or raised by their own families. As the fortunate mom of two adopted daughters who have taught me more about life, love, and family, this morning only started a conversation that needs to be continued. Thanks to Donna Karan for loaning her cavernous Urban Zen space downtown.
You can learn more about today’s symposium, Forgotten Children: International Adoption & the Global Orphan Crisis at the Daily Beast.