Lovette Gaston joined AGAPE in 2003 as a social worker. She provides maternity care to women with unplanned or crisis pregnancies, and she’s been involved in hundreds of adoptions over the years. She plays a critical role at AGAPE and within the lives of birth mothers and adoptive families. Read the Q&A below to learn more about her!
What's your favorite part of the job?
My favorite part of working with maternity clients is supporting broken people who have no other source of support. I enjoy helping women realize that they have options and that adoption is not a selfish decision. When they decide that adoption is the best option for their child, they are creating a way for their child to have a life that they cannot currently provide. I love connecting wonderful families who grieve the fact that they can never have biological children of their own with birth mothers who feel they can never provide for their child’s needs. My absolute favorite thing to see is the look on the adoptive families’ faces the first time they hold their adopted child...absolutely awesome!
What about your work might surprise people?
Even though I teach skills in parenting and how parents should talk to their children, I too sometimes struggle with the same issues with my own children.
What motivates you?
After completing Infant Adoption Preparation class, couples who struggle with infertility say that they feel a sense of hope. They feel that adoption is not the second best – it is a loving way to build a family. I’m also motivated when birth mothers tell me that they trust me and that I helped them see the positive side to their pregnancy.
What have you learned since joining AGAPE?
I’ve learned that life experiences can shape our futures, as well as the way we relate to others and see ourselves.
Do you have a favorite memory from working at AGAPE?
Where do I begin! A college student had made an adoption plan, and I was meeting with her and her parents to discuss the adoption. After I explained everything, the father stated that he was glad I gave the answers I did because he was throwing in some trick questions to see if AGAPE was just in it for the “money” that the adoptive family would pay in fees. Little did they know, the “money” goes back to support the maternity program. It allows us to offer maternity work free of charge to the birth parents, pay for court proceedings, pay for interim care for the babies and provide food and clothing assistance to birth mothers as the law allows. A portion also helps pay our attorneys who accompany us to court proceedings.
I mediated the meeting of this birth family and the adoptive family. There was such a connection that both sides no longer feared openness in adoption. They are now like extended family members and see each other regularly.
What do you like to do for fun?
I am an avid scrapbooker. I love having get-togethers with family and friends with food and games, as well as decorating, traveling, watching movies and photography. I also take on DIY projects that are way above my skill level. I wish I could say working out. :)
Tell us a little about your family:
My wonderful husband, Fred, and I have been married for 31 years after dating for five years. We have been together longer than we lived before meeting each other. We have one son and three daughters. Two are biological, and two were adopted through an AGAPE state contract before I began working here. I now work closely with the AGAPE social worker who was our adoption worker. We love family time, board games and traveling together. We have fun, laugh a lot and we love each other dearly. We are awesome as a team, and others sometimes refer to us as the “Gaston Threat” during game competitions! We are currently preparing our youngest to move to Atlanta for her first “big girl job” after graduating college in May. She will work in her field of journalism. It is bittersweet as we will truly be empty nesters…until one of the others comes back. :)