On July 27, 1953 the United States and Korea signed an armistice agreement ending the Korean War, and Holt International Children’s Services began its compassionate work to aid vulnerable children and families. To mark this historic milestone and celebrate National Adoption Month, CFM organized Children of Korea: A Sixty-Year Retrospective. This premier exhibit featured historical photos from Holt’s archives and provided a glimpse into the lives of orphaned Korean children.
November is a busy time on the congressional calendar. CFM needed to create an event and ensure maximum attendance from federal lawmakers, agency officials and other stakeholders to raise awareness of Holt’s work.
CFM began building momentum by meeting with child welfare champions in the House and Senate, as well as federal agency officials. CFM coordinated many event details, including securing the venue and confirming attendance of distinguished guests. CFM secured the participation of House and Senate leaders, foreign ambassadors and federal agency officials. To ensure the event was marked in congressional history, CFM partnered with the Oregon delegation to obtain statements for the Congressional Record recognizing Holt.
Nearly 200 attendees packed the Senate Russell Caucus Room to view the historical photos. Honorary hosts included Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley of Oregon, as well as co-hosts Senator Mary Landrieu of the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute. Other notable guests included Ambassador Ho-Young Ahn of the Republic of Korea, and Holt Korea President Kim Dae Yul. Distinguished Members of Congress including Reps. Peter DeFazio, Suzanne Bonamici and Senator Charles Rangel provided remarks recognizing Holt’s work. CFM successfully elevated the organization’s profile and showcased Holt’s rich history in the field of inter-country adoption and child welfare.