“SRP is an adoption-friendly workplace” was originally published Nov 1, 2018. In honor of National Adoption Month, we’re re-visiting the adoption story of SRP employee Patrick Bald and wife Ashley.
SRP benefits support employees on their adoption journey
An adoption-friendly workplace may not be top-of-mind for everyone when seeking employment, but it was for one SRP employee when he sought employment at one of Arizona’s most admired companies.
SRP employees like Patrick Bald are a testament to the life-changing impact these benefits can have on employees and their families.
Employees who participate in the SRP Adoption Assistance Program can receive a per-child payment of as much as $4,000 for a regular adoption and as much as $6,000 for a special needs adoption.
The adopted child is eligible to be added to the SRP group insurance plan once he or she is legally placed in the home. Employees may also be eligible for up to 12 weeks of leave, with four of those weeks paid under SRP’s parental leave policy if the employee qualifies.
The road to becoming a happy family started with an adoption-friendly workplace
Bald’s son is full of smiles and laughter. He’s chatty and inquisitive and loves to be read to.
“Seeing his progress is my favorite thing about being a dad,” said Bald, a Senior Engineer at SRP. “It’s the little moments of seeing something click in his head. And obviously all the love and snuggles.”
Becoming a father was a long process for Bald, though — one that would have been even longer without SRP’s adoption benefits.
“My wife had to have a hysterectomy, so our options for having children were limited to surrogacy and adoption,” said Bald, a Senior Engineer in System Protection. “We decided to adopt because there are plenty of kids who are already here and need a good home.”
Those benefits factored into Bald joining SRP SRP in February 2017.
The financial and emotional costs of adopting
According to Bald, the adoption process added up to nearly $40,000 between the cost of the adoption agency, a lawyer and travel to San Antonio, Texas, where their son was born.
“We were able to complete the adoption in about a year. Before coming to SRP, we had planned on it taking us about five years to financially be able to adopt. It was a godsend.”
Bald knows there are worries associated with adoption. Will I be able to bond with a child who isn’t biologically mine? Will the child love me? He encouraged those who are considering adoption to not let fear override the opportunity to become a parent.
“I had the same fears, but as soon as I got to the hospital and saw Hunter, there was no doubt in my mind that I loved him,” Bald said. “Don’t be afraid.”