Matthew: A Special Needs Adoption Program Story


Baby Matthew arrived at the end of June, a beautiful little boy with gorgeous brown eyes. Both his biological and adoptive families were by his side when doctors confirmed the diagnosis they had suspected in utero—Alagille Syndrome, a rare genetic disorder that impacts the liver and heart and often requires a myriad of interventions and surgeries throughout the individual’s life. Matthew’s birth parents had chosen to make an adoption plan for him and had worked with Spence-Chapin to select an extraordinary adoptive family.


Matthew’s adoptive family had already received extensive training from Spence-Chapin, and they were more than prepared to care for Baby Matthew’s needs.  By August, Baby Matthew was doing incredibly well and went home to his adoptive parents and siblings.

Matthew Update October 2020

Matthew has now been home with his forever family for 15 months and is his health has been stable. He is small but still growing reasonably for a person with Alagille syndrome. His kidney and liver issues are chronic but holding steady. His heart issues have improved some as he has grown. He is adored by his brothers and sisters and his family has a great open adoption with his biological family. 

This story is part of our Special Needs Adoption Program Story series, commemorating 25 years of our Special Needs Adoption Program. We are celebrating these stories and more throughout the month of November for National Adoption Month.  If you would like to support programs for children and families like our Special Needs Adoption Program, please visit or contact our Development Office at 212-360-0263. Thank you!

To find out more contact us at

212-400-8150 or email us at