Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Extending Hope, Help and Community to Adoptive Families


If you're reading this, you've probably already discovered that FRUA has a lot going on these days! From regional chapter activities to national orphanage support projects, to the FRUA Scholarship and expanding support for our teens, FRUA is on the move.

Having launched our new website at the dawn of 2010, this blog initiates a closer dialog between national leadership and you - our membership! While our organizational structure includes regional chapter leadership, FRUA's new focus on community means that we at the national level will be working harder than ever to understand your needs and to find and develop resources to help FRUA families. Over time, you'll hear from each of us on the national board as we talk about the various committees and projects on which we work.

For those who have simply discovered this blog, or just typed in www.frua.org , the initials “F-R-U-A” stand for Families for Russian and Ukrainian Adoption and, as we are so careful to add, that includes neighboring countries. We were born as a 501(c)(3) parent support group in 1994, the year that adoptions in the former Soviet bloc countries began to take off. Within two weeks of beginning as a group in the DC area, we added our first regional chapter. Nearly 16 years later, we are members of the Joint Council on International Adoption Services, new chapters continue to form, your all-volunteer, national leadership is geographically dispersed throughout North America, and our website receives traffic from 84 countries around the world.

While our trusty FRUA Chatroom continues to be extremely popular, new avenues of electronic communication are opening. The FRUA FaceBook page, launched this past winter, provides adults a place to discuss their needs and post chapter or local events. Our new FRUA Teen FaceBook (strictly for our FRUA teens) allows them to share experiences as they process their own identities and meet their challenges. As always, our excellent membership journal, The Family Focus, continues to be mailed quarterly to FRUA members.

Many more exciting things are yet to come as the year progresses. We invite you to explore the new website, join in the FaceBook conversations, and send us your thoughts and suggestions on ways we can help your family and your chapters.

Of FRUA members – we ask two things. First, get involved at your chapter level. FRUA works because our volunteers work. You'll make life-long connections that will bring you help and hope and make you a part of community. Second, if you know people who have adopted in Russia, or Moldova, or Kazakhstan or other former Soviet bloc countries -- and they aren't FRUA members -- invite them to JOIN FRUA NOW! Membership is important because without the small membership dues, our family resource work and FRUA's orphanage support work cannot happen!

Jan Johnson Wondra
Vice Chair
FRUA National Board of Directors

©2010 Families for Russian and Ukrainian Adoption

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