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Adopted from an orphanage in Russia when he was two years old, Alex Gilbert tells us his story of what it was like growing up in a small town in New Zealand as an adopted child.
This story starts in Arkhangelsk, Russia. The city where Alex was born. His birth mother unable to take care of him, decided to place him into an orphanage.
Alex was adopted into his New Zealand family in 1994 when he was two years old. Unable to remember anything and with only his birth parents names on paper, Alex has always been determined to find his birth parents. It was a case of curiosity and wonder.
With his New Zealand parents supporting him, Alex decided to do a search for them in 2013 with the help of social media.
He was able to find his birth mother Tatiana and then eventually his birth father Mihail. They had both gone seperate ways before Alex was born. His birth mother never told Mihail of his existence.
After a series of messages and Skype calls, Alex flew to Russia at the end of 2013, meeting them both for the first time. His story was told on New Zealand TV in 2014, helping Alex connect with others adopted in New Zealand who also came from the same orphanage as him in Arkhangelsk, Russia.
This story follows Alex on his journey after he met his birth parents for the first time. Alex went to Russia again in 2015 to appear on Russia's 'Let them Talk' TV show and then again in 2017 to visit his orphanage in Arkhangelsk. He also was honored to meet Anna Kuznetsova, The Children's Rights Commissioner for the President of the Russian Federation while in Russia.
With his own search for his birth parents, Alex created "I'm Adopted" which helps others around the world share their stories and reconnect using social media. Alex talks about how this project has expanded worldwide and how it has helped others also adopted connect with their birth parents.