Adoption Agencies Working in Russia – 2012
Over a dozen American adoption agencies currently hold permits to work in Russia. Back in December, 3-D contacted all that we know of and asked if they wished for our website to highlight them. We posed several of the most basic questions. If they wanted to reach thousands of readers, free of charge, no strings attached, they simply needed to fill out the form, with two reminder e-mails in January.
Sounds simple enough, and attractive enough, for those understanding that our readership is predominantly adoptive parents, friends or family of adoptive parents, and adoptive-parent wannabes. Talk about a tailored, target audience.
Two agencies responded: Buckner and Lutheran Social Services. They were appreciative, and polite, and took a few minutes out of their busy days to communicate. “Refreshing and impressive” is all I can say.
1. Agency Name: Buckner Adoption and Maternity Services, Inc.
Website Address: www.beafamily.org
2. Contact Telephone: 214-319-3426
E-mail Contact: email@example.com Irina Young, Russia Program Director
3. Approximate Cost of a Russian Adoption in 2012: $37,500 – $38,000+
Sum includes: agency fees, international fees, and travel costs
4. Items not covered in the overall cost include: home study and post- placement fees, USCIS fees, out-of-pocket expenses related to family’s dossier preparation
5. How many trips to Russia are required ? Three (3) trips
First trip: 5 – 7 days
Second trip: 3 – 5 days
Third trip: 10 -11 days
6. Names of regions in which your agency currently works: St. Petersburg , Arkhangelsk and the Arkhangelsk region, Murmansk and the Murmansk region, Krasnodar and the Krasnodar region, Chuvashia, Novgorod.
7. Ages of children available: 12 months – 15 years old
8. Other comments (eligibility requirements of parents, registration of child in Moscow or in US, etc.): Eligibility requirements for parents:* Heterosexual married couples, who are between the ages of 25 – 50 years old, are eligible to adopt. * Single heterosexual women who are living alone and are between the ages of 25 – 50 years old are also eligible to adopt. * There should be no more than 45 years age difference between the parents’ age(s) and the age of the child whom they are adopting. * Couples must have been married a minimum of 2 years. Second marriages must be a minimum of 3 years. * There may be no more than 15 years age difference between husband and wife. * Families may not have more than 5 children under the age of 18 already living in their home to be able to adopt. * U.S. citizens in all 50 states are eligible to adopt from this program. Waiting time for a referral: Wait time for a referral of a male child older than 3 years of age is approximately 6 – 9 months; for a female child – 9-12 months. Wait time for a referral of a boy younger than 3 years old is approximately 3 – 9 months. Wait time for a referral of a girl younger than 3 years old is approximately 16 + months. Registration of the child’s adoption:* The family will register the child’s adoption with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Moscow. * The family will also register the child’s adoption in the U.S. after completing 4 post-placement visits with the family’s social worker at 6, 12, 24 and 36 months.
1. Agency Name: Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsine and Upper Michigan, Inc.
Website Address: www.lssadopt.org
2. Contact Telephone and E-mail Contact:
3. Approximate Cost of a Russian Adoption in 2012: $33,250 +
Sum includes agency fee, foreign fee, in-country travel and US Embassy, refundable post-placement report deposit
4. Items that would not be covered in the overall cost: homestudy and post-placement fees, dossier prep, airfare to and from Russia, certifications/apostilles, Russian visas
5. How many trips to Russia are required? Two or Three Trips
Trip One: 7-10 days
Trip Two: 14-24 days (or 14 days with a Third Trip)
Trip Three: 3 days
6. Names of regions in which your agency currently works: 17 Regions: Stavropol, Kursk, Pskov, Tambov, Bryansk, Moscow, Ulyanovsk, Nizhny Novgorod, Karelia (Petrozavodsk), Yaroslavl, Udmurtia, Perm/Komi, Omsk, Kirov, Novosibirsk, Buryatia, Vladivostok
7. Ages of children available: 12 months – 15 years old
8. Other comments (eligibility requirements of parents, registration of child in Moscow or in US, etc.): •Families must be flexible •Married or single persons between 25 and 50 years old. Applicants over 50 on a case-by-case basis. •No requirement for length of marriage or regarding previous divorce. •No limit on number of children already in adopting family. •Individuals with criminal record, mental health diagnosis, or history of cancer assessed on case-by-case basis. •Applicants must be open to either gender, 0-36 months, or if adopting two children, 0-5 years. •Travel required by both parents; currently 2-3 trips approximately 4-12 weeks apart. •Family must complete post placement reports and registration.
Russia- Children Available: •Children ages 12 months, toddlers, older children and sibling groups. •Applicants must be open to a child of either gender. •Birth parents have either terminated their parental rights or abandoned their child. •Brief medical and family history may be available at time of acceptance; however, this is constantly changing. •Developmental delays as well as malnutrition should be anticipated due to institutional care. •Children are from various racial and ethnic groups. •If a family resides in Wisconsin or Upper Michigan, LSS would also perform the homestudy.
Thanks, Buckner and LSS. We appreciate your candor and ability to communicate.
Give them a call or e-mail if you need further info. Keep in mind that some requirements may be agency rules, others may be Russia’s rules. Check on regions where an agency is working and if those areas are moving forward with adoptions, or if they try to hinder foreign adoptions, or give referrals of severely-affected children.
More regions doesn’t necessarily mean a better agency. Talk with the regional Yahoo group members to get a feel for how their process went and how well connected the workers were in a particular krai or oblast (region or state of Russia).
Communication with an agency is key. Not that you want to be calling or e-mailing every day, but if you need them, you want to be sure that they’re accessible. I’d say that this looks like a promising start.
Just reading over the materials makes my heart skip a beat: is it time to adopt again???
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