Alex Gilbert has helped over 300 adoptees trace their birth families through a platform he founded called the I’m Adopted project. Now he’s being featured in a new documentary about adoption search and reunion. “The Man from Nowhere” was released last week.
Through his work on I’m Adopted, which offers a platform for adoptees to share stories, advice, and resources, Gilbert met filmmaker Katerina Gordeeva in Moscow. She highlighted his return to the orphanage he was adopted from in Arkhangelsk, Russia in her documentary.
Gilbert’s desire to help others stems from his own personal journey with search and reunion. In 1994, Alex and his brother, Andrei, were adopted by Mark and Janice Gilbert after spending two years in the orphanage. The two were raised in New Zealand. Unlike his brother, he was always curious about where he came from and who his biological family was. He used to enjoy being told stories about their past.
Gilbert reunited with his birth parents in 2013. Since that time, he hasn’t kept in contact much with his biological mother. He does, however, talk with his birth father frequently. He is planning a trip to go stay with him for a couple of weeks. There is a bit of a language barrier, but they make do.
Speaking of his search, he says, “I’m lucky my parents were very supportive. It was big, life-changing event.” Gilbert is grateful to be able to use his experience to help others with their search and reunion.