Family Preservation and Advocate Publications is proud to announce the recipients of the 2008 Hero of The Year Award: Jennifer and Todd Hemsley of Los Angeles, California.
Each year Family Preservation, the blog of AdvocatePublications.com, honors those unique and special people who go the extra mile to protect a natural family's integrity, often by preventing an unwarranted adoption separation and lifelong loss.
Jennifer and Todd Hemsley were selected for 2008 Hero of Year for their selfless courage in meeting these criterion, putting the best interest of an innocent child before their own desires. Suspicious about the confirming DNA test for the child they had hoped to bring home from Guatemala and make their own - they did the moral, albeit difficult thing - and stopped the adoption, losing large sums of money.(1)
With corruption rampant in adoption, those who adopt internationally - even through the most highly respected of agencies - have unwittingly found themselves the recipients of children who have been stolen, kidnapped, trafficked and sold to foreign orphanages(2).
Mirah Riben, author of "The Stork Market: America's Multi-Billion Dollar Unregulated Adoption Industry" said: "Every prospective to chose to be part of the problem and support unscrupulous baby brokers or be part of the solution." (3, 4)
The Hemsleys made a noble sacrifice and most deserving of recognition, not just for helping one child they had come to love, but also for bringing public attention to the crisis of international child trafficking for adoption. They are thus awarded 2008 Family Preservation Hero of the Year Award.
The Hemsleys will receive a certificate of honor as well as an autographed copy of The Stork Market in appreciation for their exemplary behavior in the face of being caught up on an horrific international crisis and personal moral dilemma. Their story will be reported in the revised second edition of The Stork Market.
Riben adds, "The Hemsleys are role models for all who consider international adoption, already making a mark. They have a real-life lesson for those who think, as they originally did, that it is OK to pay sums of money as a 'down payment' on a human life. We hope and pray that they child the Hemsleys nicknamed 'LaBoca' was returned safely to her family of origins and that the perpetrators were arrested and will be punished."(5)
Last year's recipient was Dr. Richard Boas, an American adoptive father launches campaign to help unwed Korean moms. (6)
(1) Llorca, Juan Carlos. 2008. To save adopted girl, Calif. couple gives her up http://my.att.net/s/editorial.dll?fromspage=ch/c.htm&categoryid=&only=y&pnum=2&bfromind=7770&eeid=6227354&_sitecat=1505&dcatid=0&eetype=article&render=y&ac=7&ck=&ch=ne'; Associated Press, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/27859660/
(2) Smolin, David. works.bepress.com/david_smolin/
(3) Riben, M. 2007. The Stork Market: America's Multi-Billion DollarUnregulated Adoption Industry
(4) Graff, E.J. 2008. "The Lies We Love", Foreign Policy. www.foreignpolicy.com/story/cms.php?story_id=4508
(5) Close Your Eyes and Think of England - http://noodlebone.livejournal.com/
(6) Helping Single Mothers and Ending Exports of Children. familypreservation.blogspot.com/2007/06/helping-single-mothers-and-