Who can participate in ADOPTION STORIES?
Our goal is to collect a variety of stories about adoption from different perspectives.We are seeking to collaborate with BOTH adult adoptees (age 18 and older) and foster/adoptive families in Windham County, VT.
Adult adoptees who wish to share their story can be interviewed individually, or with family members they invite to join. Foster/adoptive families who wish to share their story can be interviewed as a family or as individuals (for example: mother separate from child).
We want everyone to feel comfortable; therefore, the makeup of your interview session is up to you.
Tamara, co-creator of ADOPTION STORIES, writes: "As an adoptive parent I am often asked, 'Momma, tell me the story of ME again!' It is through the development of a cohesive narrative that all human beings access their own identity, find meaning and connection, and cultivate understanding, empathy, and compassion."
The ADOPTION STORIES team acknowledges that talking about trauma and loss can be triggering and destabilizing. We are interested in creating and holding space for participants to share only what they feel comfortable sharing.
Once an individual or family is committed to participating, we will conduct a pre-interview Zoom meeting to ask questions like: How can we support you in telling your story? What do you need to feel safe? What does your child need to feel safe?
What is the time commitment for participants?
We are asking for an 4-hour commitment spread out over two Zoom meetings and an in-person interview, which will be recorded with high quality audio equipment.
What kind of COIVD safety precautions will be taken?
All of our interviews sessions will be OUTDOORS and DISTANCED, hosted in back yards or parks. If participants do not feel comfortable with an in-person interview, we can record audio over Zoom.
What is the project timeline?
All of our work together will be done in the months of September and October, 2020. Podcast episodes will be edited in November and December, 2020, and the series will premiere online in January, 2021.
Do participants need to use their real names?
No, you do not need to use your real name. We can use pseudonyms to protect your privacy.
How will the process be collaborative?
We will provide each individual/family with a list of interview questions, which will be discussed together prior to meeting in-person. Together, we will craft the final list of questions and topics to be discussed, so that all participants feel safe.
On the day of the interview, we will also leave you a digital recorder with you so that you may make recordings of your own. You can turn it on during dinner conversation, clarinet practice, bedtime stories, or any other moments from that you wish to share. These moments will be woven into the interview audio, along with a musical score.
Once your audio family portrait is edited, it will be sent to you for feedback. Changes will be made according to your wishes.
Lastly, we invite each participant (individual or family) to draw a family portrait. We will supply you with art materials and frame the finished piece, a gift from the ADOPTION STORIES team.
How will the podcast be distributed?
All of the audio family portraits will be collected on a custom designed website, as well as posted on SoundCloud. We also plan to make them available to the Vermont Department of Children and Families, the Vermont Adoption Consortium, and Lund - to be used as training and recruitment materials. Lastly, we hope to have the audio files permanently archived at the Vermont Folklife Center, in Middlebury, VT.