Alliance for Children has been doing international adoptions for decades, having placed thousands of children in adoptive homes since the very first child arrived from Colombia in the mid-1970s. While the landscape of international adoption is ever-changing, this pathway to building a family remains a wonderful option!
Each country has its own set of guidelines that govern such things as eligibility requirements, travel, wait times, type of children available for adoption, etc. Please note that these are set by the sending country — Alliance for Children has no control over these guidelines—and they change periodically.
- The international adoption process begins with the completion of a home study and the gathering of a set of documents, known as a dossier.
- Next, the federal government goes through an approval process that will allow a family to bring an internationally adopted child into the US.
- After those steps are finished, the paperwork can be sent overseas, followed by the amazing, incredible, heart-stopping news about a child! In some countries this means receiving a photograph and medical information abut a specific child, and in others it means receiving an invitation to travel to meet a child and obtain the information at that time.
- All programs require at least one visit to a child's country of origin, though some require more. We make sure that our families know what to expect when they travel, what to pack, and what documents are needed for each step of the process. We have translators and guides who will meet our families at the airport and accompany them to all the places they need to go. And always remember: we are never more than a phone call or email away with any questions that come up! This trip is a wonderful and unique opportunity, and gives an adoptive family a very special chance to experience their child's birth country first-hand. As children grow, their parents' experiences, stories, memories, and photographs become an important part of the adoption journey.
- Once a family returns home with their child, they will start to settle into a routine as a brand new family! This begins the post-placement phase of the adoption process. Families will have several post-placement visits with their social worker, which may vary depending upon the requirements of the country, the program, the family's state of residence, and the needs of the child. The social worker's role during the post-placement period is to make sure that the adjustment and transition is going smoothly and to serve as a resource and source of support.
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