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Adoption Rally Spotlight: The Turner Family

Sunday, January 29, 2012
by Brent High

Scott and Denise Turner are the Adoption Rally grant recipients for the Monday's men’s basketball game against Jacksonville. All single-game ticket sales will be given to the Turners as a contribution towards their adoption expenses.

The Turners are active members at Brentwood Baptist Church. Scott is a senior software developer for PureSafety. Denise is a 1997 Lipscomb graduate and is a homemaker.

The Turners are nearing the end of their adoption process of a little boy from Korea. He will be their first child. They are expecting to be able to bring him home in April. 

They are also in the initial stages of adopting another child, likely a girl, from China.

Why are you adopting?

"We first hoped to start a family in 2004. Four years later we began considering adoption, but remained undecided until later that year when Denise tutored a child adopted from China.  We both noticed how attached the child was to her adoptive mom and how easily she adjusted to us.  Other adoptive families continued to cross our path and after hearing their stories, we realized that adoption was not that unusual and that everyday people just like us were successfully raising adopted kids.

"It was easy to see among our friends how adoption had enhanced the lives of both the parent and child. Naturally, there came a moment of decision where either we would continue to wonder about adoption or make real steps towards it.  After much prayer and encouragement from family, we believed that adoption was a blessing which we did not want to miss out on. With the decision to adopt settled, we couldn’t wait to get started."

What led you to adopt from Korea?

"The number of agencies and countries open to adoption are numerous so we spent a lot of time at http://adoption.state.gov and other sites just trying to take in the big picture.  Of course experiences from our friends’ adoptions also influenced us and ultimately our desire was to adopt from an Asian country.  With that geography selected, we learned about the adoption programs of several countries.  South Korea has a long history of international adoptions and a health care system similar to that of the United States.  With many of the orphans living in foster care rather than group care in an orphanage, we became very interested in this country. Our social worker was aware of our interest to adopt more than one child and she immediately contacted us when a little boy from South Korea became available to adopt.  We were given pictures, videos, and even family history information.

"Equipped with all this and evaluations from the staff at Vanderbilt’s International Adoption Clinic, we decided to express our interest for this child.  After exchanging our home study and other documents with the Social Welfare Society in Korea, we were given an official child referral.  He is currently living with his foster family near Seoul and recently we mailed him a card for his second birthday in January.  While we are waiting for approval to travel, we are keeping in touch by exchanging pictures and video discs."

What else is unique about your story or your family that people would be interested in knowing?

"The road that led us to South Korea first began in China.  Initially, we enrolled in a China adoption program and became eligible to adopt, or 'logged in,' with a Chinese agency in 2009.  While the Chinese agency has made efforts to make wait times more predictable, we were not expecting to be matched with a child or travel to China until 2014 or later.  In 2010, our social worker informed us of a little boy in South Korea who had just become available for adoption and asked us if we were interested in pursuing a concurrent adoption. 

"Interestingly, our dream of raising a family now involves two Asian countries.  It will be special that both children would be able to have an Asian heritage in common.  We feel blessed that one day we will be a multi-cultural family compiled of a son from South Korea and likely a daughter from China.  Only with inner peace and strength from the Lord have we been confident enough to explore adoption."

Lipscomb University's Adoption Rally program was created to help families in middle Tennessee raise money to defray some of the mounting costs of adoption. At each men's basketball home game, an adopting family is chosen as the beneficiary of all of the single-game ticket sales revenue for that game. The families are chosen by the Adoption Rally Advisory Board made up of Lipscomb alumni and friends who have either adopted children or were adopted themselves. Families that are chosen simply try to get as many people to attend their game as possible. The larger the crowd, the more money that goes towards their adoption. For full details or to apply for an Adoption Rally grant, visit www.adoptionrally.com.