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History of MN ADOPT
Creating permanency, empowering families.

Since 1980, MN ADOPT has been focused on the goal of ensuring that every Minnesota child grows up in a safe and nurturing family. Although our programming has evolved, our focus on finding homes for children and providing quality post adoption services has remained consistent. Below are some of the historical highlights of our organizational growth and program development.

1980

Organization Established under the name Citizen’s Coalition on Permanence for Children The MN ADOPT organization was founded in 1980 under the name Citizen’s Coalition on Permanence for Children. This founding group, which included a mix of advocacy minded adoptive and foster parents, was borne out of a collective concern of the trauma experienced by Minnesota foster children from multiple out-of-home placements, which often were long term, with no collective goal or advocacy systems in place for reunification, kinship placement or adoption. Most of these children lived with temporary, non-kin families until they reached the age of emancipation, at which time they ‘aged-out’ (i.e. became no longer eligible for foster care) and experienced heightened risks for homelessness, poverty, incarceration, and chemical dependency.

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1982

1982

First State Contract Awarded It was in this same year that MN ADOPT staff approached this issue with a creative idea – designing and disseminating a magazine photo listing of Minnesota’s Waiting Children which was distributed statewide in order to help find permanency resources and to help bring attention to this underrepresented population. This was a huge step forward for child placing agencies and counties across the State to strengthen their collaboration and advocacy effects on behalf of these children. This initiative was so successful that in 1982 the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) awarded MN ADOPT the state contract to maintain the State Adoption Exchange to help find families for Minnesota’s waiting children.

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1983

1983

Beginning of Ongoing Collaboration with Local Media In 1983, MN ADOPT began a professional collaboration with KSTP, a large, local media station, whose leadership also felt called to action to advocate for this vulnerable population through the reach of their media. This relationship resulted in various media features focusing on Minnesota’s waiting children, such as Thursday’s Child. This broader scale promotion helped…

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1992

1992

Organizational Rebranding: Citizen’s Coalition on Permanence for Children changes its name to Minnesota Adoption Resource Network (MARN) In 1992 the Citizens’ Coalition on Permanence for Children changed its operational name to Minnesota Adoption Resource Network, commonly referred to within the adoption community simply as MARN. During this time frame MARN focused on advocating for the Minnesota adoption community through the various supportive services it offered, as well as overall internal organizational development.

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1998

State Adoption Exchange (SAE) Expands into the Digital Age MN ADOPT received additional funding to expand the State Adoption Exchange into an online based, recruitment tool for Minnesota’s Waiting Children. The State Adoption Exchange, commonly referred to simply as the SAE, continues to this day to be a strong recruitment and educational tool for prospective adoptive parents and adoption workers. To learn more about this program, please visit https://www.mnadopt.org/meet-the-kids/

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1999

1999

Collaborative Post-Adoption Services Contract Awarded – MN ASAP In 1999 the Minnesota Department of Human Services contracted with MN ADOPT to establish a new state program focused on providing Minnesota post-adoption supportive services. This program, whose full title was Minnesota Adoption Support and Preservation, became commonly referred to in the adoption community as MN ASAP. Through MN ASAP, MN ADOPT collaborated closely with the North American Council on Adoptable Children (NACAC) to offer Minnesota Adoption Support and Preservation resources, referrals, training, and support groups to adoptive families in Minnesota. While the MN ASAP contract ended in 2009, both MN ADOPT and NACAC would go on to separately provide complementary post adoption services to the Minnesota adoption community.

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2009

Minnesota Adoption Resource Network (MARN) Awarded Another State Contract to Provide Specific Post-Adoption Support Services Through its strong track record of providing beneficial programming, MARN entered into another contract with the Minnesota Department of Human Services to provide specific post-adoption services. This contract, which was known as the MN ADOPT contract, included maintaining the State Adoption Exchange as well as the exciting task of creating an educational program which provides specific adoption-focused training opportunities to the Minnesota adoption and foster care community. The addition of this new educational program was the first opportunity MARN staff had to offer the community at large a variety of workshops and conferences focused on topics such as Trauma, Attachment, Grief & Loss, Fetal Alcohol Exposure, Transracial Adoption Considerations….etc. Currently the MN ADOPT Educational Program is…

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2011

MARN Expands Yet Again to Establish the HELP Program Due to the increasing clinical and supportive needs of the adoption community, in 2011 MARN and the Minnesota Department of Human Services extended its contract services to include the establishment of a nationally unique program focused on providing post-adoption clinical support and resource linkage assistance to the Minnesota adoption community. This exciting new initiative was called simply the HELP Program, as its goal was to ‘help’ Minnesota families that adopted through the Minnesota foster care system. Since the program’s inception, and the quick identification of need, the HELP Program expanded its supportive services to be accessible not only to those families that adopted through the Minnesota foster care system, but also those that adopted Internationally, Domestically (e.g. Domestic Infant; Adoption through another states foster care system) as well as Kinship adoption families. In addition, the HELP Program became a source of great support, education and guidance to the myriad community professionals that intersect with this population. To learn more…

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2014

2014

Organizational Rebranding Part Two: Minnesota Adoption Resource Network changes its name and rebrands itself to MN ADOPT Having provided immensely popular programming for 5 years under the MN ADOPT contract, and due to the confusion experienced within the community due to the different names associated with the supports available through…

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