Growing Families is running its fourth New Zealand Event for intended parents, surrogates and donors on 21 August after an 18-month absence.
Like past events, this one will bring together egg donors, surrogates, parents and those hoping to become so. They will join experts from Canada, USA and New Zealand in a program to educate intended parents about the possibilities and pitfalls ahead of them.
In summary, the seminar will cover
- The impact of Covid-19 on international donor and surrogacy options
- Relationship-building with local surrogates
- Medical aspsects, including egg donor considerations
- Surrogate matching and support provided in the US & Canadian models
- Legal considerations for New Zealanders
- Lived experiences of New Zealand parents and surrogates
- Changes required to NZ law
Global expert Sam Everingham will discuss what impact Covid and its consequent restrictions are putting on access to surrogacy and egg donation internationally, as well as the impact on those travelling for surrogacy births.
Surrogacy researcher Dr Hannah Gibson, who has interviewed 20 Aotearoa altruistic surrogates and 20 recipients as part of her PHD, will share the four rules that govern interactions and behaviour between surrogacy teams who meet in the online community context.
Repromed New Zealand’s fertility counsellor Helen Nicholson will outline the counselling guidelines and costs which apply to local Egg donor IVF and surrogacy processes.
Renowned fertility specialist Dr Michael Kettel, from San Diego Fertility Center, who has assisted dozens of New Zealand couples with successful egg donor IVF, will explain when to consider an egg donor; donor considerations, factors that can increase success rates and the pros and cons of PGT testing.
Kathryn Kaycoff, from Agency for Surrogacy Solutions in the US, a country that has been matching surrogates and intended parents for over thirty years, will discuss ideal surrogate screening and support processes.
New Zealand surrogacy lawyer Stewart Dalley will talk abot the complex legal considerations in regard to parentage for those embarking on domestic or international surrogacy. Canadian lawyer Cindy Wasser will discuss how Canada’s altruistic surrogacy programs have been working successfully with foreign couples for well over a decade.
A panel of New Zealand parents via egg donation and or surrogacy will include two-time gay dad via the USA Mark Catley, Christopher Hunter (a two-time dad via traditional surrogacy in New Zealand), Lee Barrett, a recent dad who navigated surrogacy in Mexico amongst the chaos of Covid, and Rebecca Bagley, who took her surrogate all the way to Hawaii to access donor eggs unavailable in New Zealand.
Our surrogate panel features Lacey Owen, due to birth in November for close friends who are a gay couple; Samantha Watkins, a mum to four children of her own who carried in 2019 for gay dads she met on Facebook; Mereika Bourke who carried for her brother-in-law in 2019; and Toni Langdon who offered to carry for a couple in 2016. However there were problems withtheir embryos and she ultimately travelled to the US and underwent egg-donor surrogacy wth the help of San Deiego Fertility Center in 2017.
Finally, the New Zealand Law Commission will be moderating a session with consumers to better understand what aspects of NZ law needs to change in regard to parental recognition, passports and processing of both domestic and international births.
Click here for the full program
Click here to purchase tickets