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BMX superstar becomes Adoption UK ambassador

Published: 08.01.18

Adoption UK is delighted to announce that adoptee, author and BMX superstar John Buultjens has become the charity’s latest ambassador.
BMX superstar becomes Adoption UK ambassador

John grew up in Glasgow where he experienced violence at the hands of his birth father and was placed in care aged seven.  He suffered burns after being thrown into a fire and was knocked out by his father during one attack.

He said: “Burnt flesh is my first memory.

“He threw me in the fire when I was three-years-old. My sock and slipper melted into my foot.”

After being placed in care on Christmas Eve, John was fostered at the age of ten and his foster parents went on to adopt him.

After being adopted, John discovered his love for riding and, with the support of his family, became a professional BMX rider. He is now the global brand manager for Haro BMX Bikes in 80 countries around the world.

John wrote an account of his amazing yet turbulent life in his book, Ride. In 2018, he will be starring in a film of the same name produced by ESX Entertainment. In this big budget production – filmed in California – John plays his abusive birth father.

When asked about his new role, John said: “I’m honoured to have been asked to be an ambassador for Adoption UK and I’m so proud to be working with this amazing organisation. I know what a fantastic job adoptive parents do for their children and I owe everything to my adoptive parents – they are my role models. It means everything to me that I can make them so proud today.

“When I wrote my book I wanted to inspire adopted children but it’s great to hear that I can also inspire parents of these children, and remind them of what their kids can achieve.”

Fiona Aitken, Adoption UK’s director in Scotland, said: “Many of our members’ children have had challenging early experiences similar to John’s.  He is a fantastic example of adverse early experiences not limiting your life’s outcomes. His acknowledgement of his parents’ role in helping him to achieve all he has is testament to the positive role adoption can have in children’s lives.  He understands the issues adoptive families face today, and so will be a fantastic representative for Adoption UK and adopted young people in Scotland.  We are delighted to have him on board.”

John joins our already formidable team of ambassadors which includes two Olympians, a broadcasting heavyweight and a West End star – all of whom have a personal connection with adoption.