Alternatives to Russian Adoption
With Russia closed to Americans adopting, what’s a prospective adoptive parent to do? You’re going to need to do your research on this one. Many are the agencies and facilitators looking to sell you on their program, but just be sure that’s it’s a proven program.
Guinea pigs often spend their times running in circles and get nowhere. You don’t want to be the one to test the waters for them in any foreign country where they have no previous experience.
Many parents looking to adopt in Russia are seeking babies and toddlers, healthy, usually Caucasian or slightly Asian. That’s not really going to happen elsewhere. Possible, though, so don’t give up hope.
All you need is one (or two, or three…)!
In my opinion, your best bet is to adopt from Ukraine. We’ve written about it a couple of times here at 3-D. And I quote: “No upper age limit for parents, approximately school-age for children (few babies available unless they have an older sibling and you adopt both), about 1/2 the price of Russian adoption, one 5-6 week stay in country–or possibly make that into two trips, no agency necessary but a facilitator would be helpful.”
West of Russia, on the Black Sea and bordered by Russia, Poland, and Romania, Ukraine is a country whose time has come. Number of adoptions from Ukraine to the US in 2011: 640. I have a feeling that number will be skyrocketing.
Our second prospective country for adoptions is on the Black Sea, north of Greece and Turkey is… Bulgaria. I’ve heard mixed reviews about this program which can take 2 to 3 years to complete, unless you’re adopting a special needs child. Most of the children are Roma (gypsy), with a few Caucasian children available. They may be 3 to 15 years of age and have at least minor special needs.
Few age restrictions for potential parents, simply at least 15 years older than the child. You may be married or single. Two trips to Bulgaria are required, each about a week, with 3 to 4 months inbetween. Number of adoptions from Bulgaria to the US in 2011: 75.
Our third country for prospecive adoptions is rather iffy. Landlocked near Slovakia, Croatia, Austria, and Macedonia, we speak of Hungary. Also Caucasian and Roma, the children available range from 6-16 years old. The adoption may take 1-2 years. Parents must be less than 45 years older than the child, and must be married unless a single woman wishes to petition for a child over 10.
The children often come from foster homes and receive good care. You will need to travel to Hungary for 6 weeks, similar to Ukraine. After the referral, and should you decide to adopt the child, he/she comes to live with you in the apartment or hotel where you are staying. The local social worker visits you over a period of weeks and makes observations and writes reports. This determines whether or not you may adopt.
Here’s the rub: Number of adoptions from Hungary to the US in 2011: 4.
Not promising. We need to ask: why so few? Maybe the numbers will increase, but be careful for now.
That’s it, folks. Three possible alternatives to Russia. Do your research, proceed with caution, but don’t become discouraged. There’s a child out there, waiting for you.
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