Adoption activism: Lebanon in a global context

Today Bada’el/Alternatives presented a workshop on “The Right to Origins” co-hosted with Legal Agenda, in Badaro, Beirut [link to site]. There were six adoptees present from the Netherlands, others from France and Switzerland. We’ve been doing a lot of media these past few days, and I think it is safe to say that we’ve definitively put an end to both the usual “poor orphans” mentality of the media, as well as what ends up being a mushy kind of mealy-mouthed adoptee-speak that endlessly depresses me.

I presented on the topic: “Adoption activism: Lebanon in a global context”. I tried to show how adoption resistance is not new but has always existed; the political and economic underpinnings of the practice; the extent of adoption activism globally speaking; that we don’t need to re-invent the wheel, that there is precedent to follow, to just fine-tune to a Lebanese context.

Screen shots of the presentation:

Opening slide


Historical, political, and economic underpinnings of adoption

Adoption resistance

Legal reform

Social reform

Adoptee "ferrymen": Aiding adoptees in return

Search angels

Discussion and support

Vocal activism



Corrective mediation



Closing slide

The presentation file as a PDF: Adoption-Resistance-LA.pdf

I was most impressed by the sense of common cause. It was great to be working again with lawyers and activists I had lost touch with. My heart went out to the woman who had to simultaneously translate my compressed delivery into Arabic. I was elated to find an old friend from my neighborhood managing the pizza/snack shop in the same building. Most of all, it was awesome to be able to speak truth to power with no qualms or inhibitions. Things are shifting, changing, and moving in Lebanon.


About Daniel Drennan ElAwar

Adoptee, rematriated.
This entry was posted in activism, article/paper, citizenship, media, voices and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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