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Adoption Angels Application Checklist

Privacy Level: Public (Green)
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Adoption Angels Project

Note: "Adoptees" can also include unexpected parentage (NPEs), donor children, and other cases of unknown parentage. Adoptee is often used generically by Adoption Angels.

Please complete each of these items to the best of your ability before completing the Adoption Angels application form. Doing so will ensure your place on our list for the next available Angel who will assist you in finding your birth family.

  1. Consider your goal for your search. Knowing what outcome you want will help us tailor your search to your needs. Plus, we often will have answers very quickly once we begin the search. It helps if you are prepared for what you want to do next as soon as you have the names of the family you are searching for.
  2. Take a DNA test. Paperwork and people often lie, but DNA never does. Since we want to provide you with accurate answers, a DNA test is now required for Adoption Angels help. In most cases ANCESTRY DNA is preferred. We can often cut down the search time significantly by using Ancestry DNA over the other tests. If that test is not available to you, please see DNA Basics-Which Test Do I Take. DNA tests often go on sale for as low as $59 especially around holidays. It is okay to apply for help while you are still waiting for your DNA test results.
  3. Upload your DNA test for free to My Heritage, FTDNA, and Gedmatch for additional DNA matches and comparison purposes. Directions are available on each site.
  4. Order any available paperwork. If you were adopted, do an online search to see if an original birth certificate, non-identifying information, or adoption paperwork is available to you in your state, province, county, or country.
  5. Label as many of your known DNA matches as possible by using the notes feature for the company where you tested. (Examples: "brother's son" or "related on the Smith line")
  6. If you are outside the USA, please make note of how many DNA matches you have above 100cM. Adoption Angels will ask you this question.
  7. Look at your ethnicity results at one DNA company and note the top three groups. To better serve you, Adoption Angels will ask you for this information to pair you with an Angel with the most experience in these areas.
  8. As soon as these steps have been completed to the best of your ability, you are ready to complete the application and we will be able to start your search more quickly. If there are items you were unable to complete without help, a Mentor Angel may be available to assist you. Now go back to the application form, fill out as much as you are able, and click submit. You will hear from someone from the Adoption Angels Project within about a week.

How this Works

  • Once you apply for help, you will receive a message from a Mentor Angel who will check that the above has been completed. If you are unable to complete one of the items, they will assist you before you are placed on a waiting list for the next available Family Finder Angel.
  • The next available Family Finder Angel will send you a message letting you know they are available to assist you.
  • The Family Finder Angel will gather information from you (see section below). They will also need access to your DNA results. At Ancestry you can easily give them viewing access. At the other DNA companies, you will have to give them your log-in information for their help. If you are uncertain about doing this when asked, you can verify the Angel by messaging the Adoption Angels Project Leader or checking the Angel's profile for their Adoption Angels badge.
  1. The Family Finder Angel will use your DNA and their expertise to build mirror trees until they narrow down to your birth parent (or grandparents/great grandparents). They will relay any findings to you by email. When they have narrowed down to your birth parent, they will provide an explanation of how they came to that conclusion.
  2. The Family Finder Angel will make recommendations to you on how to verify the findings without a doubt. They will also make recommendations on how to connect with your newly found birth family if that is your wish.

Adoption Angels Mission Statement

We recognize that unknown parentage is emotional and sensitivity is needed in working with you to find information and family connections.

The following is our mission statement laying out what our Adoption Angels will and will not do to aid you with your search for your birth family.

Adoption Angels will:

  1. Help Adoptees to set up their WikiTree profiles.
  2. Help Adoptees to find information needed for a biological family search such as birth records and non-identifying information.
  3. Help Adoptees use the information they have to search for birth families.
  4. Help Adoptees who have found their birth parents to get started on creating their biological trees.
  5. Help in searches for biological parents for deceased members of the family up to your grandparents.
  6. Help integrate DNA test results into the search for family.

Adoption Angels will not:

  1. Research for or on behalf of minor children (under the age of 18).
  2. Make contact with the biological family of searcher.
  3. Pressure any individual to make contact once the lost family is located.
  4. Assist someone other than the adoptee without the adoptee contacting the Angel to give consent.
  5. Search for living relatives (such as a child who was adopted away from the family at birth).
  6. Charge for their services.
  7. Work on historical adoptions (past finding parents of grandparents)

Further, privacy is a key point of our Honor Code. As such, Adoption Angels will be sure any private information will be kept 100% confidential.

  • Login to request to the join the Trusted List so that you can edit and add images.
  • Private Messages: Contact the Profile Managers privately: Emma MacBeath and Adoption Angels WikiTree. (Best when privacy is an issue.)
  • Public Comments: Login to post. (Best for messages specifically directed to those editing this profile. Limit 20 per day.)
  • Public Q&A: These will appear above and in the Genealogist-to-Genealogist (G2G) Forum. (Best for anything directed to the wider genealogy community.)
Comments: 4

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I have already met with my birth mother, who told me the name of my deceased birth father, backed up by legal documents from the post-adoption services. Based on the source information I received, I've been working on a few trees throughout the past few years.

About a week ago, there was a strong dna connection on FTDNA, showing a profile of a potential half-sister. When I contacted her, I discovered that she was my half-sister, but her father wasn't the same person from the sources and my birth mom's own words. (my birth mother passed away 2 years ago) Her/our father is alive and well, and has also taken a dna test. I haven't seen his results yet, but I have spoken with him, and what he shared with me, leaves me no doubt that he is my dna birth father. I've switched my WikiTree profile to "private" until I can make these adjustments. My question is, how do I change my tree all the way up from who I believed was my birth father? Will I have to start over from the beginning?

posted by Jerry Paul
Hi Jerry, you can simply remove the previous person as your birth father and then add the new person. Removing them will lop off an entire branch of your tree, but you can then build the new branch out from the new person. Emma
Do I understand correctly that Adoption Angels will also help to find grandparents (my deceased mother was adopted - I'm searching for her biological family)? I have my own DNA, plus that of my two siblings (one brother, one sister), one first cousin (female), and my first cousin's two daughters.
posted by Cathryn Carver
Hello Cathryn, Yes, if you have a DNA test, we can find your birth grandparents. All you need to do is fill out the application under the help tab when you're signed in to WikiTree. Emma