2016/09/23 – Adoption assistance benefit helps bring ‘blessing from above’ to Buckeye family - Human Resources at Ohio State

Adoption assistance benefit helps bring 'blessing from above' to Buckeye family

Dave Thomas Foundation Names Ohio State ‘Adoption Friendly Workplace’ for 10th Year in a Row

Lissa Kidwell’s dad says she is a “blessing from above” who entered his life with the assistance of Ohio State’s adoption benefit.

Aaron Kidwell, a GIS analyst in Ohio State’s Office of Planning and Real Estate, and his wife Lisette adopted Lissa in 2015.

“We’ve had her since she’s been about a minute old. It was exciting! We didn’t know if we were getting a boy or a girl,” Aaron said.

Ohio State’s adoption assistance benefit is available to eligible employees with a regular or term appointment of at least 20 hours per week. Adoption assistance is a benefit that provides university employees with financial help. Paid parental leave may also be available to employees who are adoptive parents.

This is one reason why the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption recognized Ohio State as an adoption-friendly workplace in 2016 for the 10th consecutive year.

For Lissa, who just turned 1 in August, the adoption assistance benefit helped bring her family together.

“Without it, I’m not sure we could have done it,” Lisette said.

Angela Persichetti, a benefits coordinator in the Office of Human Resources, partnered with the Kidwells in their adoption journey.

“It was a pleasure working with Aaron to get his family started,” said Angela, who enjoys receiving photo updates from the family.

Aaron, who has been at Ohio State for four years, first learned about the adoption assistance program during new employee orientation.

“If you’re not sure about adoption, go for it. Especially here at Ohio State,” he said.

A few weeks before Lissa was born, Aaron and Lisette received a phone call saying everything was falling into place, and they were going to have a family.

“Adoption is incredible, you can’t use words to explain it,” Aaron said.

Lissa already has a lot of Ohio State gear, and there’s a good chance she’ll join Ohio State as a student one day, Aaron said. For now, she is rooting for the Buckeyes alongside her mom and dad.

The Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption is a nonprofit charity that raises funds and increases awareness, awards grants and provides free resources to be used throughout the country.

Read more about your benefits eligibility on the Benefits Eligibility page.

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