More than 220 attendees from 12 countries attended the 2016 MHB Brussels conference on Parenting options for European gay men. The conference was widely covered by the Belgian media, allowing us to raise the need for ethical and effective surrogacy legislation around Europe. Representatives of seven European LGBT associations expressed frustration over the currently limited fatherhood options gay Europeans have, and joined MHB in calling for ethical and effective European surrogacy parenting options. The call was informed by ethical parameters for the use of surrogacy that were developed by MHB in collaboration with an advisory committee of surrogates, two of whom took part in the conference. This was MHB’s second Brussels Conference and it once again provided a wealth of unbiased information and access to a wide range of relevant service providers. It was offered in an expanded two-days format, and at a larger venue, yet once again an overflow room with live video feed had to be added to accommodate the large demand. It brought together community activists from several LGBT European organizations, medical and legal experts, parents and surrogate mothers.
September 24-25, 2016
Hilton Brussels Grand Place
Carrefour de l'Europe 3
1000 Brussels | Belgium
Carrefour de l'Europe 3
1000 Brussels | Belgium
Advanced registration is now closed.
Attendees can benefit from special group rates for hotel accommodations at the Hilton Brussels Grand Place.
The conference will be mainly in English with simultaneous translation to French and German
The 2016 Brussels conference on:
Parenting options for European gay men
Unbiased information & resources on surrogacy and adoption
Comprehensive "how-to" parenting program
Advise from surrogates and gay surrogacy parents
Gay Parenting Services Exhibitors
Reception and networking for parents, prospects and allies
Medical, psychological, and legal experts
Breakout sessions to meet clinics and agencies
On September 24-25, 2016, the most comprehensive conference dedicated to gay men who want to have children is returning to Brussels!
Following the success of our 2015 conference, our second Brussels Conference will once again provide a wealth of unbiased information and access a wide range of relevant service providers. The conference this year will be offered in an expanded two-days format, and at a larger venue - given the high demand we had last year. It will bring together community activists, medical and legal experts, parents and surrogate mothers. Several workshops and panels will provide peer advice on surrogacy in the USA and Canada, and adoption of children from the USA. We will offer peer advice about finding and picking professionals to help in the process, and information about financial assistance.
On the first day of the conference we will introduce MHB’s new Framework for Ethical Surrogacy, which was developed with the assistance of an advisory board made of surrogates. The framework already received endorsements from several LGBT family associations worldwide.
Across most of Europe gay men who want to become fathers face serious legal, cultural, and financial obstacles. With over 4500 future and current gay parents worldwide, the nonprofit organization Men Having Babies (MHB) is dedicated to helping gay men become parents. Since our previous conference we strengthened our ties with our European partners and started accepting applicants to the Gay Parenting Assistance Program (GPAP) from France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Switzerland and the UK.
Agenda in brief(for more details and speakers see the full program here)
Saturday, September 24:
- 17:30 - 18:00: Registration and welcome reception (light refreshments)
- 18:00-19:00: Personal stories panel - hear from several surrogates and European parents.
- 19:00-19:15: Coffee break
- 19:15-20:30: Ethical and Effective European Surrogacy Solutions — the need, the vision, and the path forward.
Sunday, September 25:
- 9:00 - 9:30: Registration
- 09:30-10:00: Overview of surrogacy and adoption options in the USA and Canada
- 10:00-11:00: Planning your parenting journey - major legal, medical and financial considerations.
- 11:00-11:15: Coffee break
- 11:15-12:30: Picking providers, budgeting and financial assistance (GPAP).
- 12:30-14:00: Lunch and gay parenting resource fair (tables of surrogacy and adoption agencies, clinics, lawyers and community organizations).
- 14:00-15:15: Country-specific expert panels: Legal, medical and peer advice on surrogacy for France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany and the rest of Europe (UK, Ireland, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, etc.).
- 15:15-15:30: Coffee break
- 15:30-17:10: Breakout sessions - learn more about the surrogacy and adoption providers.
- 17:10-18:00: Resource fair & networking reception.
- Please note that the conference will be mostly in English, some in French, but we will have simultaneous interpretation to both French and German at all of the main sessions.
- Conference attendees are eligible for 25-40% discount on accommodations at the Hilton Brussels Grand Place.
- Attendees can also book private consultations for Saturday or Monday with the clinics and agencies who will be in Brussels for the conference (also at the Hilton).