Understanding Embryo Donation and Adoption

Louise Brown, the first 'test tube' baby

The face of infertility treatments changed dramatically in 1978 when the very first ‘test tube’ baby, Louise Brown, was born in Great Britain. Shortly thereafter, fertility specialists discovered how to freeze and store embryos. Before too long, doctors began offering donated embryos to patients, primarily through anonymous donations. In 1997, Nightlight Christian Adoptions established the first embryo adoption program, allowing couples to pursue a known donation wherein they could have a mechanism for further communication for medical or psychological needs of the family and their resulting children. Since that time, over 300 babies have been born through Nightlight’s Snowflakes Embryo Adoption Program alone.

If you are considering embryo adoption for your remaining embryos, or if you are interested in receiving embryos but are uncertain of what that looks like, you can discover the processes and terminology in The Fundamentals of Embryo Donation and Adoption webinar, presented by the Embryo Adoption Awareness Center.


If you are like me in that you’re able to understand something like this better through stories, I’d encourage you to view the Getting Personal: Families Share Their Embryo Journeys webinar. In this special event, three families shared how their lives were touched by embryo donation and adoption. Hear first-hand as a woman who donated her embryos to another couple before embryo adoption was established shares the joys, challenges, questions, and unknowns of anonymous embryo donation. Then hear from two couples who were matched through the Snowflakes Embryo Adoption Program as they share the joys of open embryo adoption.

You can view the recording of either of these webinars on the Webinar Archives Page of the Embryo Adoption Awareness Center’s website.

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