Thursday, July 23, 2009

National Conference


July 31, 2009 to August 1, 2009

The conference will be held for a second time at the Davis Conference Center.


Below is the schedule overview at-a-glance. For a more detailed description of the classes including the class descriptions, times and locations as well as bios on the presenters, click HERE.

Friday, July 31st

Breakout session 19:30-10:30
Breakout session 210:40-11:40
Lunch on your own11:40-1:10
Breakout session 31:15-2:15
Breakout session 42:25-3:25
Breakout session 53:35-4:35

Awards Banquet 5:30-7:00
(Semi-formal dress)

Saturday, August 1st


Keynote address by Troy Dunn9:30-10:30
Birth Parent Panel10:45-12:00
Lunch 12:00-1:00
Breakout session 11:00-2:00
Breakout session 22:10-3:10
Breakout session 33:20-4:20
Closing session and raffle4:30-4:45


To register, CLICK HERE.

This is for registration and payment purposes only. Please disregard any information related to Temple Square events.

Some clarification for registration:

Couples are $60 each, so they only need to register for ONE ticket. This is located toward the bottom of the registration, and is not part of the special code. Once they select one ticket and click continue, it will ask if they will be coming both day, ($60), one of them both days/both of them one day ($30) or one of them on day ($15). Sorry for any confusion. Please email us at the email address below if you have any problems.

Adoptive parents and hopeful adoptive parents are invited.

We also are inviting expectant parents, birth parents, and their families again this year. A great amount of effort has gone into planning breakout sessions for them. Expectant parents and birth families may register for free by typing in “itsaboutlove” in the special code field on the registration form. Regular fees apply to their guests.


A few hotel rooms at the Hilton Garden Inn (762 West Heritage Park Blvd, Layton, Utah, 84041) are blocked out for a discounted event rate. You may reserve a room by phone or through the hotel’s Web site. Call 801-416-8899 and make sure to mention the group code, which is “LDS” and the group name, which is “LDS Family Services.” You may also register online here. In the group code field, enter “LDS.” In order to get the discounted rate of $89, you must be registering for the blocked date (July 31st). We will be posting other hotel options when the hotel is full.


A children’s room will be available again during the conference and banquet. Please email Narda Emmett ( to register your children. The cost will be $10 per day, per child. She will provide you with the details.


From the airport Express Shuttle - 801-596-1600.


If you have general questions, please email with “National Conference” as the subject.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Have you fully explored the new

As most of you know, LDS Family Services has recently released a new version of This new website is much different than the previous version and has many additions that will benefit birthparents and adoptive families as well as church leaders and professionals working with them. If you're in the waiting process, you've probably already explored how to browse through profiles as you've searched for your own and others. These new user-friendly search options allow birthparents to be more selective and to quickly find profiles for families who would best fit their needs and interests. In addition, if you haven't had a chance to check out the following, be sure to do so:

Once you've clicked on "Hoping to Adopt," you can view the following:
Adoption facts, myths, and proper adoption language (under "Adoption Basics"). This holds a wealth of information that would be good to send to friends and family who might need a little more education about adoption.
Questions, stories, and other information to help you know if you're ready to adopt (under "Is Adoption Right for Us?").
Stories of adoptive families' experiences with adoption (under "Real Life Stories").
Church talks, web links, and other resources (under "Adoption Resources").

Have you been curious to know what birthparents see as they explore the new website? After you click on "Pregnant," check out some of the following to help you get a better feel for a birth mom's perspective:
Information about pregnancy (under "My Pregnancy").
Advice and information to help birthparents understand the realities of abortion, single parenthood, marriage, and adoption (under "What Are My Options?").
Videos and stories about real birthparents' experiences (under "Real Life Stories"). We found these enlightening and also very emotional to watch, so they are probably our favorite addition to the new website.
Ability to send an email to a birth mother or a counselor in order to get support and guidance (under "Get Support").

This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to exploring the new website. It is a valuable resource for birthparents, adoptive families, persons considering adoption, friends and families of those involved in adoption, and for church leaders.

For those of us with online profiles who are waiting to be selected by a birth mom, it can be encouraging to look at your profile statistics. After logging in to your application, click on "Phase 4: Finding Your Child." At the top left of the page, click on "View Profile Statistics" to see that people actually ARE seeing you! (Or maybe you've just been clicking on your own profile a few too many times… J).

The new is also much easier to find online than the previous version. You can, of course, type in Or, access it from by selecting "Home and Family" and either "Adoption Services" or "Pregnancy Counseling." One of our favorite activities to share with others as we educate them about LDSFS is to go to Google and type in "adoption." It's as simple as that. The first non-sponsored link is, and from that page you will often (though not always) see a big advertisement about halfway down that when clicked takes you to You can also google "abortion alternatives" or "pregnancy counselor," and the first link listed for each of those terms will take you to websites sponsored by LDSFS with additional links that take you directly to

As you can see, the adoption program is important enough to the LDS Church that it has decided to increase the usability of its website and to expand its marketing campaign. Seeing the great effort that has been put into the new website has helped us recognize the important role adoption plays in the Church; it's something that the Lord cares enough about to direct Church leaders and others to help match children and parents together as eternal families.

We have been telling all our friends and family about the new website, and we encourage you all to do the same.

Libby and Ethan Sproat
(FSA Members in West Lafayette, Indiana just waiting to be selected!)