Pact Camp

Adoption… It’s Complicated! Raising Awareness for Service Providers (CEU''s)

Start time/date: Sept  11, 2019 11:00 AM
End time/date: Sept  11, 2019 1:00 PM
Place: Webinar
Call-In Instructions Will Be Emailed After Registration

 Adoption… It’s Complicated! Raising Awareness for Service Providers

Does your organization provide counseling to women facing unplanned pregnancies? Is adoption one of the options you discuss with them? Do you feel confident about how to support women and families considering an adoption plan? Or those whose children have already been placed into adoption or foster care? Would it benefit the clients you serve if your staff deepened their knowledge of the complex topic of adoption? This course is designed specifically for service providers working with women and families facing unplanned pregnancies and considering adoption, as well as those who have already placed children.


The only program of its kind, “Adoption…It’s Complicated!” draws on both first-hand, personal experiences, and the latest research, to help service providers discuss adoption with honesty, balance, and compassion. “Adoption…It’s Complicated!” will offer insights for social workers, options counselors, nurses, therapists, and anyone who might interact with expectant and first/birth parents.


Professionals will come away with a greater understanding of the needs and experiences of expectant and first/birth parents, both those who make voluntary placements and those whose rights are terminated through the child welfare system. This learning opportunity will help you provide services and support to a vulnerable population in an empowering, respectful, and culturally sensitive manner. This webinar is appropriate for professionals working with pregnant women, expectant parents, and first/birth parents.



Educational objectives:


  1. Compare the different types of situations and reasons that lead parents to place children for adoption in domestic infant adoptions and child welfare adoptions.
  2. List respectful adoption language and preferred terms to use when talking about adoption so as to build rapport with pregnant women, expectant parents, and first/birth family members.
  3. Identify some of the most common myths about first/birth parents and how those myths can negatively impact service delivery.
  4. Describe the demographic data on expectant/first/birth parents who place their babies and children in voluntary placements, as well as who have children removed through the child welfare system.
  5. Give examples of how power, privilege, and marginalization--in regards to adoption triad position, race, and socio-economic status--impact the experiences of expectant/first/birth parents.
  6. Identify implications for practice in settings where professionals are encountering pregnant, expectant, and first/birth parents.
  7. Compile practical, concrete suggestions to use when interacting with expectant and first/birth parents across situations: pre- and post-birth and pre- and post-adoption/foster care placement.



Instructor: Susan Dusza Guerra Leksander, MA, LMFT #47992, Adoption Agency Supervisor and First/Birth Family Specialist


Experience: Susan Dusza Guerra Leksander, LMFT is a licensed psychotherapist who specializes in the adoption and foster care triads. She is both a first/birth mother, as well as a transracial adoptee. Susan has been providing individual and family therapy to all members of the foster / adoption constellation since 2008 in private practice and agency settings. She has delivered workshops and keynotes addresses to adoption professionals and adoptive families at regional, state, and national conferences on adoption. She is the Adoption Agency Supervisor and First/Birth Family Specialist at Pact, where she focuses on the needs of expectant parents considering adoption, and first/birth families who have placed children for adoption.


CEUs: This course meets the qualifications for 2 hours of continuing education credit for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs, and/or LEPs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. All activities in the course are offered for continuing education credit. CAMFT-Approved Continuing Education Provider Number 131157

Pact is approved by the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists to sponsor continuing education for LMFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs and LEPs. Pact maintains responsibility for this course and its content.


Special Needs: To request accommodations for special needs, please email the Program Administrator at who will respond within 3 business days to all inquiries.

Certificates: Course completions certificates will be awarded within one business week, upon confirmation of full attendance at workshop and completion of course evaluation. Certificates will be e-mailed to registration address unless other method is requested.

Refunds: Please choose carefully when registering for Pact events. Pact is not in a position to refund workshop or event registration fees.

Grievances: If you wish to file a grievance, you may do so orally or in writing.

Phone: 510.243.9460


Address: 5515 Doyle Street #1, Emeryville, CA 94608

Pricing Description:

$45 per person non-member

Special pricing Pact member receive 15% discount.

Please choose carefully when registering for Pact events. Pact is not in a position to refund workshop or event registration fees.