Kilkenny sports journalist with RTE, Evanne Ní Chuilinn explores the long and often difficult story of adoption in Ireland in a poignant documentary to air on TG4 this week.
In this 70-minute authored documentary, broadcaster, mother and adopted child Evanne meets with law-makers, activists and people who have gone through the adoption process as children and parents and uncovers the human stories behind adoption in Ireland.
“The time is right for this,” says Ní Chuilinn “because the government is trying at last to grapple with the problems that the practice of adoption in this country has created over the years.”
Adopted from one of Ireland’s notorious Mother and Baby Homes in the early 1980s, Evanne embarks on a very personal mission to fill the gaps in her own information and to try and find out where she was for the first four months of her life before she arrived at her parents’ home in the arms of a social worker. However, she discovers that accessing basic information about yourself is far from straight forward when you are adopted.
Evanne’s emotional journey takes her around the country, from where she grew up in Kilkenny to the site of the Bon Secours Mother and Baby Home in Tuam, as she strives to find out more about the dirty history of Ireland’s past adoption practices.
She meets with fellow adoptees and birth parents who share their stories with her.
Evanne discovers that legislating for adoption is wrought with controversy. But in the conflict between information and tracing rights for adoptees versus the right to privacy of birth parents, Evanne is in no doubt as to where she stands.
“We should all have access to basic information about ourselves. It is not a danger to anybody.”
The documentary shows Evanne finally get a response to her requests for her own information, but will these be the answers she has been looking for?
Uchtú: Evanne Ní Chuilinn is scheduled for broadcast on TG4 at 9.30pm on Wednesday, November 13.