The International Association of Volunteer Adoption Agencies and Non-governmental organizations (IAVAAN) has been a strong supporter of the Convention for more than 20 years and is committed to ensuring that the principles and practices advanced by the Hague Convention continue to work in the best interests of children, which include advocacy for transparent and ethical intercountry adoption.
The Hague Convention promotes adoption not as an end in itself, but as part of the greater goal of doing whatever is in the best interest of a child, including the viable option of intercountry adoption. A comprehensive child welfare solution must prioritize options that result in children achieving their right to a permanent, nurturing family, and intercountry adoption must be viewed as a positive option for children who will not be reunified with their families or adopted domestically.
IAVAAN is committed to working with all stakeholders – including Central Adoption Authorities, adoption service providers, parents, and international child welfare organizations to ensure intercountry adoptions work better for children, relinquishing families, and the families who are adopting children.
Chuck Johnson has worked in the field of Child Welfare since 1986. Throughout his professional career, he has been a passionate advocate for ethical and transparent adoption for orphaned, abandoned, and relinquished children in the United States and around the world for whom family reunification or domestic adoption are not timely or realistic options. He is currently on staff with the National Council For Adoption, an adoption advocacy nonprofit that promotes a culture of adoption through global education, research, and legislative action.
Ryan Hanlon, MSW, Ph.D. is a child welfare specialist and adoption professional with extensive experience in research, education, and direct service related to adoption.
Dr. Hanlon is on staff with the National Council For Adoption and is an adjunct instructor for graduate students in the social work program at The Catholic University of America.
Prior to joining NCFA, Dr. Hanlon worked for over thirteen years as an adoption professional, most recently as the Executive Director of a Hague-accredited agency that provided domestic and intercountry adoption services.
Dr. Hanlon has experience as a foster care caseworker and with child protective services. Dr. Hanlon has been a speaker at national and international adoption-related conferences and has worked on accreditation issues as well as state licensing matters.
Phil Littleton is President and CEO of Holt International Children’s Services. Holt is a world leader in providing services leading to permanent loving families for children around the world, as well as the largest international adoption agency.