2020 Application Period
Adoptees Connect, Inc. will begin accepting application requests in January 2020. Information about our affiliate model can be found below.
Please click here to see if we’re already operating in your area if you live in the USA and click here to see if we’re already operating in your area if you live outside the USA. We hope you will get involved locally if there is already a Adoptees Connect Group in your community!
What is an affiliate?
An affiliate is a community-level grassroots group that serves a specific area and fulfills the Adoptees Connect mission locally. Each affiliate is independent and responsible for its own fundraising efforts, programs, referral agency relationships, volunteers and so on.
Affiliates are formed by individuals who want to support adult adoptees in their communities. Having identified a regional need for adult adoptee resources, they determined that an Adoptees Connect Group would benefit their area.
To date, we have Adoptees Connect groups in 43 cities and 27 states, including one group in Canada.
Why become an Adoptees Connect affiliate?
- Through our groups, we’re striving to bring community, hope, and healing to as many adoptees as possible.
- All of our groups are adoptee-centric.
- We believe adoptees are the real experts in adoption.
- We’re building lifelong relationships with those who understand us.
- We’re the first worldwide post-adoption resource for adult adoptees.
- We put adoptee voices first.
- Through our groups, adoptees are empowered by one another to find their voices.
- Becoming an affiliate for Adoptees Connect, Inc. will change your life as well as the lives of countless adoptees who attend your groups.
- In 2020 we’re expanding internationally.
- We’ve launched the very first Adoptees Connect, Inc. Google Earth Project and when you become an affiliate planting a group with our organization you will be featured on this astonishing & exciting project. Visit here to take a peek.
- We’re putting an end to the isolation and loneliness many adoptees feel.
- Our groups stray away from the traditional support group model by placing a larger emphasis on building strong, healthy relationships with other adoptees.
- Our goal is to plant a group in every city, in every state so that no matter where an adoptee might go, they will always have a community to fall back on.
What should you consider before starting an affiliate?
Starting an Adoptees Connect group is an exciting and rewarding experience but also a serious endeavor and should be treated as such. You will become a valued member of our renowned non-profit organization, gaining access to a wide variety of resources to assist you along the way. We’ve worked hard over the last 2 years to get everything ready for you. Now you have to make the decision if this is the right path for a new chapter in your life.
A few things to bear in mind before starting:
- You must be passionate and committed to our mission. Please read our website tabs to learn more.
- Starting an affiliate requires large amounts of time and energy, something for which founders must be prepared.
- Starting an affiliate also requires a small amount of funding. The main office does not provide seed money nor can we offer estimates of what local expenses might look like for a new affiliate as budgets vary based on local communities, resources, and needs. We believe in keeping things simple so that there aren’t too many costs incurred to host a group after its initial startup.
- You must have the ability to carry out different elements of the start-up process including: starting your group, networking in your community, building one-on-one relationships with adult adoptees in your area, facilitating fundraiser opportunities, and maintaining a self starter attitude
- You will need to obtain a suitable space for your affiliate group to meet each month as well as secure any funding from a diverse array of sources to cover the costs of any miscellaneous expenses your group may incur.
- You must recruit any volunteers and build relationships with referral agencies.
- You must be an adoptee who has a genuine desire to make connections with adult adoptees by creating a safe space for them to gather and offer understanding and encouragement as we navigate our journeys together.
- An adoptee who is well-informed and has done a great deal of personal work regarding their own journey. They should be very well-read.
- When facilitating the group, an understanding that it’s not about the facilitator, it’s about the participants.
- An adoptee who is a good listener and who can communicate well.
- We are a nonprofit that is 100% volunteer-based. We aren’t on-call and most of us have full-time careers. Being a self-starter is critical, and networking with other facilitators and partners in the exclusive Facebook group is incredibly important as they can and will be your main points of contact if you need assistance moving forward.
Benefits and responsibilities
Adoptees Connect Group Affiliates enjoy many advantages as part of our network yet also have a number of shared responsibilities.
- All affiliate groups and branches are separately operated and independent from one another and from Adoptees Connect, Inc.
- USA Startup Membership for an Adoptees Connect group —and the benefits associated with it—are $149 USD for one facilitator. If the partner already has two facilitators to start the group, the startup membership will be $199 USD. Consider finding a second facilitator as we feel it can drastically improve the productivity of the group. Adding a second facilitator after the group has already been planted is a $99 USD processing fee.
- International (any groups outside the USA) Startup Membership for an Adoptees Connect Group – and the benefits associated with it- are $199 USD for one facilitator. If the partner already has two facilitators to start the group, the startup membership will be $249 USD. Consider finding a second facilitator as we feel it can drastically improve productivity of the group. Adding a second facilitator after the group has already been planted is a $149 USD processing fee.
- To start Adoptees Connect branches: Adoptees Connect – Transnational & Trans-racial, Adoptees Connect – LGBTQ, Adoptees Connect – Adoptees in Recovery and Adopteens Connect they will be available for a $199 USD processing fee for each affiliate branch.
- Adding branches to your already formed Adoptees Connect group such as, Adoptees Connect – Transnational & Trans-racial, Adoptees Connect – LGBTQ, Adoptees Connect – Adoptees in Recovery and Adopteens Connect will be available for a $99 processing for each additional group added to the already formed Adoptees Connect group. **To be eligible to add these affiliate branches, we encourage that the candidate has successfully operated an Adoptees Connect group for at least a year, but it’s not mandatory.
- Each individual group affiliate and partners of Adoptees Connect, Inc must pay an annual membership fee of $35 USD due by January 1st each year.
- Each individual must also abide by our trademark disclosure, social media policy, the affiliate agreement, and the financial, fundraising & self supporting agreement signed at the beginning of affiliate partnership.
- All affiliates have the right to use the name “Adoptees Connect” as approved by Adoptees Connect, Inc.
- All affiliates will facilitate groups monthly and occasionally host a friends & family event.
- Once the group has been planted, the facilitator has 30 days to hold a group.
- All affiliates will provide recommended resources for each small group.
- All affiliates will complete a monthly check-in form on the Adoptees Connect website.
- All affiliates must live within 30 minutes of group location.
- Affiliates cannot change the group location or the name of the location of the group after it’s initially been planted.
- Affiliates cannot have groups in multiple cities or states.
- Affiliates must submit proposals to have a conference, workshop, or retreat using the Adoptees Connect name and logo.
- Adoptees Connect small groups must always be free of charge. If other events using the Adoptees Connect name needs to charge a fee, this must be cleared with Adoptees Connect, Inc. and the incoming money must be tracked and documented. These instances will only be approved in rare cases as we want to keep our events free and accessible.
- Affiliates must read emails and post questions in the Facilitator group on Facebook and be up to date with any changes in Adoptees Connect policies .
- Affiliates must agree to read the facilitator manual and be familiar with our mission statement, FAQ’S, and materials on our website.
- Affiliates must maintain unbiased opinions when facilitating the group and be respectful to all group members.
- If you are a therapist, social worker, or have done group work before, you cannot treat the group as a therapy group.
There are significant benefits to being an Adoptees Connect Affiliate:
- Joining Adoptees Connect means becoming aligned with a well-respected non-profit that is the first worldwide community designed specifically for adult adoptees by adult adoptees. We’ve worked hard to establish an excellent reputation in the communities we serve, among our volunteers, and in the adoption community.
- As we continue to expand, you will be part of a global organization and will have an identity—a logo, brand, and mission—that is both recognized and esteemed throughout the world and the adoption community.
- You will have access to—and can benefit from—materials that have proven successful in other Adoptees Connect groups and across the Adoptees Connect community.
- You will have free access to create a website on your own and manage social media for your group.
- As shared above, we’ve launched the very first Adoptees Connect, Inc. Google Earth Project and when you become an affiliate planting a group with our organization you will be featured on this astonishing & exciting project. Visit here to take a peek.
- You will have all the materials you need to create a safe space for adult adoptees, but are also encouraged to add elements of your own unique personality and creativity to the group.
- Adoptees Connect affiliates will benefit because Adoptees Connect, Inc is always seeking marketing opportunities and increasing awareness about the organization and our group locations.
- Additional resources—database, files, the affiliate/facilitator manual on starting, resources on growing and facilitating a group, as well as our exclusive internal communications portal via our Facebook group —are available to affiliates to encourage communication among the network and the sharing of best practices. We have a community of support that’s already built for you and many resources to guide you in planting and growing your group.
- We keep our group listing up-to-date on our website to provide publicity for your group.
- We provide 5 different Adoptees Connect logos for facilitators to use on social media, photos, flyers and letterheads.
- We provide a space on our website for facilitators and partners to report any changes within the group such as contact information.
- We collect monthly check-ins from facilitators which help facilitator productivity in facilitating groups.
- We provide new facilitators with a checklist to assist with planting groups.
- We collect attendee surveys so attendees can provide feedback to further improve groups.
- You can sign up for our Adoptees Connect Book Initiative waiting list. Find out more here.
- You will receive an affiliate welcome box, one per facilitator that will include: 50 Brochures, 10 lanyards, 10 bracelets, 10 stickers, 1 T-Shirt, 1 Verified Volunteer Badge, 1 customized welcome certificate. **If your startup fee is waived (rare situations), you will not receive a welcome box, as this is a significant expense we can’t accommodate unless the startup fee is paid in full.
- A coupon code will be provided tor all affiliates at Adoptee Merch for 20% off all purchases for groups, partners, attendees and volunteers of affiliate groups.
- You have the option to purchase more promotional materials like brochures, lanyards, bracelets, stickers, etc.
- You have the opportunity to be put on a waiting list to receive a sponsor to assist with the startup fees.
- You have the chance to be in partnership with the very first adoptee-centric resource for adult adoptees changing lives all over the world.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I submit an application now?
Adoptees Connect will start accepting applications on January 1, 2020.
Does Adoptees Connect, Inc. provide start-up funds?
No. Each affiliate is a separately operated. Therefore, each location is expected to raise all of the funding needed for its startup, launch, and operations as well as the yearly membership fee.
Can I visit another Adoptees Connect location before I decide if I want to submit an application?
Yes! We actually encourage it.
Are the Adoptees Connect groups considered therapy or support groups?
No, they aren’t. Our groups are not therapy and should never be considered a replacement for therapy. They stray away from the traditional support group model by placing a larger emphasis on building strong, healthy relationships with other adoptees. Our groups are meant to be a place of conversation, validation, and loads of fun. Whether adoptees are hiking, bowling, getting coffee or going out to eat, there are always a wide variety of opportunities to connect outside of/in addition to our monthly connect group meetings. Each group is independent so they will have fundamental differences in how they operate- which is one of the aspects that makes our groups so unique from others! Social activities are a significant part of our vision as well as monthly small group meetings.
Are Adoptees Connect groups adoptee-centric?
Yes! We only allow adult adoptees to attend our small group monthly meetings, but some groups host friends & family events separately so that we can bridge the noticeable gap that’s created otherwise.
Do I have to have small group experience?
Of course it’s helpful, but it’s absolutely not required. You will not be penalized if you do not have a background in working with small groups. Obviously, this type of experience is valuable in the start-up period. Founders often supplement their own knowledge by recruiting start-up volunteer members who have worked in a similar fields previously and who can provide assistance in relevant areas.
What if I can’t afford the membership fees?
We have a sponsorship program to assist with these measures. We currently have a waiting list and as sponsors step up, we will be able to aide in this assistance. To learn more, click here.
What if I have questions after I decide to invest in planting a group?
We have an exclusive internal communications portal via our Facebook group for our partners, volunteers, and facilitators to connect, network and support one another. This will be your main source when you have questions on topics related to your group.
I belong to another organization. Can I partner with Adoptees Connect?
Yes! You still must adhere to all of the Adoptees Connect startup fees, policies, and procedures as well as complete the 5 easy steps to plant a group.
How long does it take to get approved to be a partner of Adoptees Connect?
Our application wait times are currently 7 -10 days which has been significantly improved from the first 2 years of our organization’s growth. If you have made it this far, and have decided this commitment is for you, please follow the steps below to get the ball rolling.
HOW TO PLANT A GROUP IN 5 EASY STEPS
- Fill out our application here.
- Make your startup payment below. For USA groups, the startup fee is $149 for one facilitator or $199 for two facilitators. Adding a second facilitator after the USA group has already been planted is a $99 processing fee. For any international groups ( outside the USA), the startup fee is $199 for one facilitator or $249 for two facilitators. Adding a second facilitator after the international group has already been planted is a $149 processing fee.
- Check your email for our acceptance email followed by DocuSign forms that we will need for you to sign and return.
- After the forms are signed and returned, we will email you our manual and your 5 logos, mail you your welcome box, and add you to the exclusive internal communication portal via our Facebook group for our affiliates, partners, volunteers and facilitators.
- We will add your name, email, and phone number to our website so that adoptees in your area will be able to find you and come to your group.
Start An Affiliate – Make Payment Below