“Thinking of becoming a Dad? Start planning now.” | Growing Families

A message from Growing Families, an inclusive surrogacy service.

Melbourne seminar – Saturday November 5 – 12pm to 6pm

Tom & Ofir

Thinking of becoming a Dad? Start planning now.

It is alarming how fast the rainbow family-building landscape has shifted in the past decade. Ten years ago, there was a large cohort of gay couples and singles who flocked to India to chase their dream of family; a similarly large group did the same in Thailand a few years later. Smaller numbers built families in Cambodia and Nepal. One by one those countries closed as governments wised up to the challenges that a lack of supportive laws posed.

Amidst all this, surrogacy here in Australia have steadily grown in popularity -with a caveat. The lack of structured support, screening and compensation for Australian surrogates means many fall over before they even get to the embryo transfer stage. 

The lucky amongst us have a sister or friend who might step forward to offer her eggs, or even to carry our child. But most look further afield – to the US or Canada – stalwarts of the surrogacy landscape – and more recently to programs in Colombia or Argentina to create family. There are pros and cons to all these options which are vital to understand.

Jewish couple Ofir, a high school maths teacher and Tom, a software engineer, met on Facebook.  Both come from close families with three siblings each. Tom had dreamt of parenthood for a long time. Around four years into their relationship they attended a surrogacy conference to understand their options. A seed was planted for Ofir. He kept thinking about the possibilities, imagining becoming a parent.

They knew this pathway would be expensive. Moving in with Ofir’s parents to save money, the couple were drawn to altruistic surrogacy in Canada. Good friends had a child via surrogacy in Canada and helped the pair with their research. (Their story features in a new book Surrogacy Stories).

Cross-border surrogacy can be an arduous journey with a myriad grey areas. So start planning early. If you think you want to be a dad in three years time and do it without financial hardship – now is the time to start gathering information, saving funds and getting yourself on agency wait-lists. 

Between 5 – 8 November, at seminars in Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth – singles and couples will share their journeys to parenthood here in Australia, in Canada, the US and Colombia, including how they planned, budgeted and survived the hurdles. The seminars bring together surrogates, intended parents and experts from around the globe.  They are a great opportunity to get educated on the options available, the risks and ensure you can look back on your family building journey with pride. Go to www.growingfamilies.org/all-events 

JCCV and ZV support new Israeli surrogacy statement


Please see our statement alongside Zionism Victoria regarding Israel’s Supreme Court decision to remove restrictions for same-sex couples and single men to become parents.

“The Jewish Community Council of Victoria (JCCV) and Zionism Victoria (ZV) welcome the decision handed down by Israel’s Supreme Court that removes restrictions for same-sex couples and single men to become parents. As the elected Jewish Victorian roof bodies in our community, we advocate for the interests of all our constituents and fully support this inclusive statement on surrogacy in Israel.

The ruling said that “[a]s it has been determined that the [current] arrangement is unconstitutional, ‘a lack of political feasibility’ cannot justify the connotation of severe harm to basic rights.” The court ruled that restrictions on surrogacy for same-sex couples and single fathers in Israel must be lifted within six months, giving authorities time to prepare for the change.

Surrogacy was previously permitted for heterosexual couples and single women in Israel but the law excluded same-sex couples and single men.

Daniel Aghion, President of the JCCV states that “Good parents are defined by the love and care for children, not by the gender and sexual orientation of parents.”

Yossi Goldfarb acknowledges that Israel, once again proves to be a beacon of democracy and inclusiveness in the Middle East.

The JCCV and ZV stand by our LGBTIQ+ community members and wholeheartedly welcome this change.”

Aleph Melbourne & Dayenu stand up for LGBTIQ surrogacy in Israel

LGBTIQ Jewish groups stand up for equal access to surrogacy in Israel.

A Letter to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu - LGBTQ-Jews


Benjamin Netanyahu
Office of the Prime Minister
Jerusalem, Israel
July 21, 2018

Dear Mr. Prime Minister:

We represent more than 20 LGBTQ-Jewish communities from across the world and writing to express our strong support for the Israeli LGBTQ community’s struggle and fight for equality.

The right to become a parent is a universal basic human right that should not be deprived to anyone, especially due to their sexual or gender identity. It is not just a liberal concept, but also a Jewish mandate to “be fruitful and multiply”. Israel’s latest legislation, which discriminates against Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, Transgenders, and Queers by denying their right to parenthood, comes after several years where same-sex couples in Israel are facing inequality in parenthood rights and legal recognition.

We stand in solidarity with the LGBTQ community in Israel and express our concerns over the recent trends happening to individuals and their equal rights.

We call on you to amend this discrimination and to truly promote equality for the LGBTQ community.