This Saturday, March 7, Men Having Babies (MHB) will host the first in a series of events about surrogacy in Canada. The series consists of four seminars, each three to four hours long, running from March through to October of 2020, hosted and co-sponsored by Toronto LGBTQ+ institution, The 519.
Frank Nelson, a board member of MHB and Toronto local, is helping to facilitate these seminars. As a dad through surrogacy himself - you might recognize him from this photo that went viral - Frank is thrilled to help enlighten others about the altruistic process in Canada. Through his own journey, Frank and his husband BJ have become advocates for surrogacy in Canada, and he's honored to have been an MHB board member for the past three years.
"These seminars give prospective parents an opportunity to meet other gay parents through surrogacy as well as the other key players involved in surrogacy," said Frank about this new initiative in Toronto. "We are going to have clinics, lawyers, agencies and mental health professionals at the seminars to answer questions and take part in panels. This is a rare opportunity to get under one roof a wealth of information, advice and access to a wide range of relevant service providers."
Each seminar will include advice from peers on how to "Plan Your Surrogacy Journey in Canada," an expert panel focusing on different topics such as legal and medical aspects, as well as opportunities to hear directly from parents, surrogates and egg donors. There will also be time set aside to meet with local trusted service providers, and an opportunity to mingle with other folk who are interested in surrogacy.
Frank can't wait for others to learn more about the surrogacy process in Canada and realize their dream of fatherhood, but he does advise patience. "Because we follow the altruistic model for surrogacy here in Canada, it often takes a longer time to find the perfect surrogate. My husband and I met with many women before we met our angel. I feel the right woman is out there for everyone. Start looking for your surrogate right away, and then get everything else underway."
With the first event of the four taking place this coming Saturday, starting at midday, attendees are encouraged to keep their calendars free for the May 2, July 11, and October 3 seminars taking place later this year.
Tickets are $15 on the door, and $10 in advance.