• Fertility Experts from around the world

  • Run by parents for intended parents

  • Meet and network with parents & professionals

  • Check out our events!

  • Fertility Experts from around the world

  • Growing Families is a non-profit organisation

  • Run by parents for intended parents

  • Our events promote best-practice


Where: Level 1, Sydney Mechanics School of Arts, 280 Pitt St, Sydney

When: 9.30am – 2.00pm

Face-to-face ($15) & remote ($10) tickets available (post event recording)

This event is for Australian intended parents to learn about surrogacy and/or egg donation, logistics, eligibility and costs.  We will cover domestic and international options. Hear from Australian parents who have recently completed their family via surrogacy. Local and international experts will discuss the legal, medical, psychological and practical considerations.  Australian surrogates will talk about their motivation to carry a child for another family.

This is the first time we have been able to meet face to face in over a year. If you are in Sydney, come along for a cup of tea and a light lunch to network with parents via surrogacy, surrogates and experts.   

Digital tickets are also available. 

IconSaturday 20 March 2021 Australian Eastern Daylight Time (Sydney Time)
Timing Description

Understanding the Current Egg Donor and Surrogacy Landscape

An overview of options globally, including embryo and sperm shipping options & costs, donor and surrogate availability,  travel for donor-IVF, the impact of Covid-19, entry and exit processes for births as well as surrogate & clinic interaction.

Sam Everingham, Growing Families

Medical Preparation for Intended Parents

Whether you are shipping sperm for egg donor IVF or surrogacy elsewhere, or making embryos in your own city, there are important steps in the medical screening and testing process. Understand the importance of blood & urine screening, how your reproductive capacity can be medically assessed and what can be done to increase the quality of your sperm or embryos

Dr Peter Illingworth, IVF Australia

The Impact of Covid-19 on Ukraine Surrogacy

Lotus Surrogacy has been assisting Australian intended parents with Ukraine surrogacy for more than five years. Before that they ran programs in India and elsewhere. Their large team have an unparalleled understanding of Ukraine paperwork and processes. Lotus principal Dana Magdassi discusses the impact of the pandemic on their own surrogates, parents and how they have learned to adapt.

Dana Magdassi, Lotus Surrogacy

Practical Advice on Legal and Parentage Issues 

Provides a simple guide to when & how you will need to interact with lawyers in undertaking surrogacy arrangements domestically or offshore

Cassandra Kalpaxis, Kalpaxis Legal

Morning Tea & Networking With Parents and Experts

Altruistic Surrogacy in Colombia

Surprisingly, Colombia offers a limited altruistic surrogacy program for foreigners with a focus on the needs of gay couples unable to locate a surrogate in their home country.  Dozens have enrolled in such programs and already Australians have welcomed children through Colombia. While Colombia is now open to travel, most intended parents are choosing to ship sperm. Dad via surrogacy Damien Chambers provides an update on the processes, including surrogate screening and care, the impact of Covid-19, donor and surrogate availability, costs and exit processes for Australians

Damien Chambers, Tammuz Family

Considerations for Australians needing to travel for Donor IVF or Surrogacy Births
While there is no need to travel to commence international surrogacy, given sperm or embryos can be shipped, many Australians need to travel for egg donor IVF, given the lack of donors in Australia and the fact that many have embryos offshore already. As well,  parents need to leave and enter Australia every week for surrogacy births. With the lack of airlines flying, the special permission required to travel and the strict quotas on arrivals, it is essential that you are well organised.
Craig Fyfe, Your Travel Expert, Australia

Parent Panel

Recent heterosexual and gay Australian parents via surrogacy in Australia and internationally  share their experiences, the highs and lows, what they learned and what they would have done differently

Moderator: Sam Everingham

Panelists: Rebecca Newson (via Ukraine), Michael & Iolanda (via Canada) Todd & Phil (via US) Tamara & John (via Australia)


The Australian Surrogate Perspective

Local altruistic surrogates provide a reality check for intended parents – one who had a positive journey and one a more negative journey- discussing what they expect from singles or couples they carry for, what motivates them and the ups and downs of the journey.

Michelle Fenwick (two-time NSW surrogate), Leanne McKay (NSW surrogate)