Sanjana, with her grandfather
"I was born in Arkhangelsk, Russia in 1992. A few months after my birth, I was placed in the Regional Baby Home and was adopted by my New Zealand family in 1994. I was raised in a small town outside of Auckland, and in 2011, I moved to New Zealand's largest city, Auckland. In 2013 at the age of 21, I began my journey to search for my birth parents. By the end of the year, I travelled to Russia to meet them for the first time in my life.
Amidst all this, I have faced all sorts of highs and lows. Since 2013, I have been to Russia five times. I have been fortunate to reconnect with my birth father and his family. Unfortunately, I haven't been as lucky in reconnecting with my birth mother. Regardless, connecting with my birth parents isn't something I regret at all - it changed my life completely.
In 2015, I founded "I'm Adopted" which helps other adoptees globally share their own story of adoption. Along with this platform, I have set up events in New Zealand, Russia and Ireland for adoptees to connect. Something I've always wanted to do is provide for my old orphanage by offering gifts for the children at the orphanage currently."
(Auckland, New Zealand)
Alex is living in Auckland, New Zealand. He manages I’m Adopted, which has over 30,000 followers on Facebook. You can follow his work and connect with him on Facebook @nzalexgilbert and on Instagram @alexgilbert.