This is the place where we are have documented the road we have walked in order to adopt our four children from Brazil and the road we are now on as a family. We are keenly aware that adopting is not just a process we've chosen to go through, but part of God's plan for us and for our children. May He be glorified through the process and through our family!
Monday, January 28, 2008
A letter from AWAA
You'll be home with us soon.
Dear El Salvador Families,
Thank you all for your prayers and encouragement in my most recent trip to El Salvador. I was able to visit two small orphanages outside San Salvador with Identity for Children. The children I met were as loving and as beautiful as any I’ve met so far. They were always smiling and excited to play or just get hugged. I was especially moved when we visited a home for HIV+ children. Many were very healthy, active, and loving infants and children. I hope to have pictures for you all soon.
America World is developing a program and process that works with HIV+ children available for adoption. With new medical technology, HIV+ children live full lives without serious medical issues arising from their condition. Adopting an HIV+ child is not for everyone, but this may be a good option for many families.
During my trip I was able to meet with the Director of OPA; we talked about options for AW families as things are moving slower than any of us anticipated. She shared that they do still have children to place but there is still a lack of human resources to not only process families’ dossiers (to be approved by OPA) but also within ISNA to process the children’s paperwork for adoption.
I encouraged her to give (and gave suggestions for) options that would allow families to learn more about the older children and special needs children that are waiting and available. We’ll keep you all posted as that portion of the program develops. We are encouraged though by their deep desire and commitment to continue to work with our families in placing their children for adoption.
However, due to the significant time delays we are seeing we do need to revise the estimated wait time for a referral and now project it to be 18 months and increasing. All of America World’s information will be reflecting this estimate in the coming days. I know this is hard news for many families to hear and I want to assure you that we’re doing everything possible to decrease this wait time. In addition, we have decided to stop accepting new applications after February 8th for this program, in order to allow the backlog of families to be processed.
I know that many of you were praying for more immediate positive outcomes to be seen from my trip. If after praying about and discussing this new information you determine that this is no longer the right program for your family and wish to transfer to one of America World’s other programs by March 1, 2008 you may do that. While we do not transfer fees as a matter of practice, for any family who feels that they do not want to continue in the El Salvador program at this time we will transfer all program fees to another America World Program. Our current programs with the shortest wait time between dossier submission and referral are Ethiopia , Kazakhstan and Russia .
If you decide to withdraw from the El Salvador Program you will need to submit in writing to me your desire to withdraw from this program and your desire to switch to one of our other programs. You will need to be reviewed through our Intake Department for that other program; if approved, all of the fees you have paid so far will be transferred for you toward your new program. If there is a cost difference that will be reflected in what money does transfer. If you decide to withdraw from the El Salvador program and not to transfer to another America World program the America World refund policy will be used to determine any refund of program fees.
We are doing everything in our power to be able to place waiting Salvadorian children in the homes of America World Families. One avenue we are taking is to setup a roundtable with members of government humanitarian aid and development projects in El Salvador to discuss ways in which they can leverage their aid against the commitment of El Salvador to process and place orphans into permanent families. In addition to this, we’re supporting the work of Identity for Children to help orphans get their necessary paperwork and we’re continually in contact with ISNA and OPA regarding the status of their work and our families dossiers.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions you may have about this information. My prayers go with each of you as you seek God’s will for your family.
In His Service,
Latin America Program Director
Eastern Europe Family Coordinator
6723 Whittier Avenue, Suite 202
McLean, VA 22101
Toll Free: 888-ONE-CHILD ext. 124
Direct Line: (703) 891-3145
Fax: (703) 356-8973
(KJV) Romans 8:15 For ye have not received
the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have
received the Spirit of Adoption, whereby we
cry, Abba, Father.
Click here to learn more about AWAA’s An Orphan’s Ticket Home campaign.