Thank you to Creating Genius Magazine for this great write up about That Adopted girl and #ThatsWorthy!
Original Article at: http://cgeniuslife.com/that-adopted-girl-juliana-whitney-founding-something-thatsworthy/
Through the most tragic of situations, a miracle can occur. Like a rose blossoming from the rubble of an urban setting, Juliana Whitney understands all too well how to persevere in the most difficult of scenarios. In her case, only to end up a beacon of hope for so many others. An adoption can be a heartbreaking and unimaginable experience for many children. For Juliana Whitney, however, being adopted was her catalyst to becoming a guiding light of inspiration for so many girls in her shoes.
Feelings of not good enough or “less than” can be a debilitating emotion that can render harm far beyond a physical wound. For Juliana, this difficult situation bloomed into a business that has helped so many in her situation. That Adopted Girl, Inc. was founded in December of 2014 as a 501c3. “Our goal is to help adopted kids and foster kids learn about their self-worth and life lessons. More than anything, I want to create happy childhood experiences,” said Whitney.
Founding That Adopted Girl to help others on a mass scale
Adopted as a newborn in Sante Fe, New Mexico, Whitney struggled as a teenager finding her own way. “When I was 12-years old, I had an identity crisis. My parents put me in therapy, which helped me work through and understand everything that I was experiencing.” Surviving her teenage years with the help of her adopted parents as well as her biological father, she arrived at a greater sense of purpose. “My birth dad and I are very close today, he has been a big influence for That Adopted Girl and was the one who really encouraged me to pursue it,” she said.
There are a multitude of adopted children across the country and especially the world, who do not feel a sense of family. There are over 100,000 foster children in America alone. Whitney and the rest of her team at That Adopted Girl are raising awareness to help educate adopted children about their self-worth while also informing the public of this very real social enigma.
“I always talk about self-worth because that is something that everyone can relate to – not just adopted people. In a way, it inspires advocacy around this topic,” she says. “I have been working on building an audience through social media and reaching to people everywhere. We are constantly trying to get donations and build an audience around this cause.” She is even reaching out to musicians and poets, who write short pieces about foster care and adoptions for That Adopted Girl.
Entrepreneurial drive means innovative ways to gain exposure
Whitney’s creative genius and entrepreneurial spirit have driven her to take action. Interestingly, she devised an innovative way to help That Adopted Girl gain exposure during National Adopted Month this past November. “I hid 5,000 bookmarks that I made with our website http://www.thatadoptedgirl.com, in books throughout Barnes & Noble and Target,” she told us. “We received a bunch of publicity and traffic as a result of this.”
Being adopted herself, Whitney is aware that adoptions can affect the adoptee well into adulthood. This mindful thought has helped spark an added purpose for That Adopted Girl. Ignited by Whitney’s passion for educating and gaining advocacy, she is reaching out to adults who were in foster care or who were adopted. Her interviews with them provide deep insight for others. “Getting their stories and perspectives as adults bring the issues into a whole new light,” she said.
Living to serve others can give one a greater sense of purpose beyond the traditional means of business and industry. Her willingness to think selflessly and to utilize the experiences she has gone through allows Whitney to help so many people that are following in her footsteps as adoptees themselves. “The kids’ feedback makes it all worth it. Being told, ‘Thank you for all that you’re doing and making me feel less alone.’ That is why I do, what I do.” This sense of civic duty, is beginning to gain momentum beyond the Las Vegas community. Whitney will be speaking at the Adoption Exchange Conference in Colorado about her story and her growing non-profit.
Not making an impact is not an option
Juliana Whitney and her team at That Adopted Girl recognize that there is a divide in our country amongst those going through foster care and those who are not. Putting emphasis on the children being our future is not enough for this organization and its founder – and rightfully so. Through their campaign, a monsoon of understanding and warmth will overcome these children who feel abandoned and empty. For more information on how you can donate or become involved with That Adopted Girl, please visit http://www.thatadoptedgirl.com or #thatsworthy or @thatadoptedgirl.