Archive for the ‘ Rules and Regulations ’ Category

New Website Spreads Awareness of Dangers of “Orphanage Tourism”

Monday, November 26th, 2012

international adoption nutritionIf you are even considering an international adoption, much like my family is with a toddler daughter in India, you must thoroughly do your homework, document all your paperwork, legalize everything — and make sure you’re not stealing some poor mother’s newborn in a Third World Country without her knowledge.

It happens all the time, but international rules and regulations are halting such illegal practices.

This helpful website is to educate people about what orphanage tourism is and the devastating affect is having on the children of Cambodia, many of whom are not even orphans. Most governments and child care professionals regard the institutionalization of children in orphanages as the very last resort. Unfortunately, in Cambodia it is increasingly becoming the first, mainly due to the increased demand from travelers and donors for more and more orphanages. Others are nothing more than money-making scams that are specifically targeting unsuspecting tourists.

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The group’s spokesperson said in an interview, “Few of these people that are trying to help are actually qualified to work with traumatized or vulnerable children, so what we end up with is an even more dire situation. We really want to get the word out about this important cause, and let well-intentioned people know that there are better alternatives and avenues through which they can help.”

“The fact is, most travelers, donors, and volunteers are completely unaware that they are fueling this problem or that they may be doing more harm than good,” comments the group spokesperson. Media Note: Because many of the most profiteering Cambodian orphanages have close ties with the government (some of those who have spoken out about this in the past have been threatened) this group prefers to remain anonymous for now.

“We encourage visitors to become educated about orphanage tourism, and to help us continue to raise awareness by sharing the information they learn here with others. The goal is to stop fueling the orphanage industry and find ways to support vulnerable children and their families, not split them up. The children of Cambodia, and around the world, deserve better.”

You can help channel the good intentions of travelers and donors towards initiatives that provide more positive support for children, and support family based care, reducing the separation of children and their communities.”

Are you considering international adoption of a baby or a special needs toddler? What countries are you considering?

 

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Why Does Adoption Take So Long?

Monday, July 30th, 2012

After 12 months of personalized research between international adoption (more specifically, a young daughter from India) and doing all my research, I find that the average the time it takes to adopt a toddler via international adoption from the countries we looked at (Haiti, Russia and India) is two years. On the other hand, I now know families that have registered with the county — in these cases Los Angeles Country — taken all their training hours and been placed on foster-to-adopt lists in under a year.

Waiting less than a year for an adoption is more like it.

Has anyone out there been able to speed up the international adoption process? I realize that it’s quicker to adopt an Indian daughter if you are Indian and live nearly anywhere. It also helps to possess wads of adoption cash.

Domestically, I spoke to a single dad of two adopted American children and although he won’t go on the record (he is a gay dad who had to lie about his partner throughout the Home Study and adoption paperwork) this gay did swears that the second adoption only took a few months because everyone knew he was ready to plunk down $80,000 for a perfect little blond, Caucasian newborn.

(Off the record, this dad told me that his first adoption of a transracial child — also a private adoption via birth mother and attorneys — took much longer than adoption number two. He confirms that thick bank accounts can speed your process along.)

Over the last decade, U.S. families have adopted on average approximately 20,000 children from foreign nations each year.

Generally speaking, to qualify as an adoption for immigration purposes, the adopted child has the same rights and privileges as a child by birth (such as inheritance rights, etc.). “Simple”, “conditional”, or “limited” adoptions are more accurately described as guardianship and are not considered adoptions for U.S. immigration purposes.

The Hague Convention establishes important standards and safeguards to protect intercountry adoptions. These protections apply to you if you choose to adopt from a country that is also party to the Convention. Your adoption will be known as a Convention Adoption. It will be important early on to determine if you wish to pursue a Convention adoption, and you do, trust me you do.

How long should it honestly take to adopt a child in need? Tell me what you think here:

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The History of Adoption – How Did the Practice Start?

Wednesday, July 18th, 2012

I surfed a bunch of sites and called an adoption resource line to research how the actual practice of adoption even started. I thought it began in the olden days between extended families very casually, but that’s only one part of the history of adoption. How did families and neighbors begin taking each others’ children?

Ancient adoptions can be traced back to the Roman Empire where wealthy, aristocratic families without male heirs would adopt older boys or men from within their community, extended family or local village in order to continue the family lineage and name.

Adoption declined during the Middle Ages when pure bloodlines became more important for inheritance and land owners.

Until the 1850s, informal adoptions — from family to family — would take in the occasional orphaned neighbor child. As informal adoptions increased, the need for legalizing the process became law.

In 1853, Charles Loring Brace, a protestant minister who founded the Children’s Aid Society of New York, conceived the idea to relocate and find homes for orphans from the Civil War. Some documents claim that orphaned and adopted kids ended up as servants or worse but the era after the war shaped America’s foster care system.

Through the 20th century, states passed adoption legislation to protect and serve orphans. President Theodore Roosevelt recommended moving away from institutional orphanages and placing children in family homes.

From closed adoption in the 1940s and 1950s, gradually the industry has progressed to more “open adoptions” without the stigma for birth mothers.

Adoptions reached their highest point in 1970, and have leveled off.

In the last two decades, international adoption is popular too, providing homes to children that have been orphaned by war, disease and global poverty.

Read more about The History of Adoption,  and tell me your adoption story in Comments below.

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New Countries Partner for International Adoptions

Monday, July 16th, 2012

As my family wends its way through the grueling, mystifying journey of international adoption, I keep my ear out for countries that follow the Hague Convention, and work with those agencies only.

The Convention was originally written to help countries regulate international adoptions and to protect children.

The Hague Convention’s main goals are to:

· Protect the best interests of adopted children

· Standardize processes between countries

· Prevent child abuse, such as trafficking in children

The new Ghana program offered by Adoption Associates said two separate trips are required: one to meet the child and attend a court hearing and the second to obtain the child’s visa and bring the child home.

So many families are passionate about the plight of African orphans, but one couple has been in the news lately because of a paperwork jam and they are awaiting a sibling adoption in Ghana. They left a couple biological kids at home with relatives.

Read all about this Orange Country, Calif. family who is being detained in Ghana after being totally cleared of child trafficking. The couple had to post bond for their own release and their passports were finally returned.

How scary.

Tell me your adoption story here:

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Abused? Jerry Sandusky’s Second Adopted Son

Friday, July 13th, 2012

Well, of course he was. Psychotic pedophile Jerry Sandusky has a “type” of boy he seems to prefer to rape, molest and devour, including his adopted sons who were tormented from about the time they were 8 years old. (That seems to be the old perv’s sweet spot.)

I just watched Matt Sandusky in his testimony, he actually seems kind of envious when he aged out of Jerry Sandusky’s clutches. He didn’t know any better but all these little boys loved Jerry Sandusky and he betrayed them all in the worst way possible.

Matt 33, was adopted by Jerry and Dottie Sandusky as an adult, after going to live with the family as a foster child. He was prepared to testify at Jerry Sandusky’s trial about years of abuse. [Old photograph of Matt Sandusky, Photo Right]

During testimony at trial, Victim 4 told jurors that one time Jerry Sandusky began touching him during a shower, Matt Sandusky was present, but left the shower when the assault began.

And then there’s foster son #2. Didn’t know about him — did you?

EJ Sandusky, also adopted, is no longer an assistant football coach at West Chester University, near Philadelphia. He has 19 years of experience as a college coach. He graduated from Penn State in 1992 and played football.

EJ has not spoken publicly about Jerry Sandusky’s arrest or conviction, but he’s left his post at the University.

Jerry Sandusky, the 68-year-old retired defensive coach for Penn State, was found guilty of 45 counts of sexually abusing 10 boys over a period of 15 years on June 23. The charges filed last month carry a minimum 60-year sentence and 442 years maximum. [Jerry Sandusky, Photo Right.]

“Our most saddening and sobering finding is the total disregard for the safety and welfare of Sandusky’s child victims,” said Louis J. Freeh, the former federal judge and director of the F.B.I. who oversaw the investigation.

“The most powerful men at Penn State failed to take any steps for 14 years to protect the children who Sandusky victimized.”

How many more lives can this one evil man, Jerry Sandusky, ruin? His legacy of brutality and devastation will live on long after that dirty old man does. He’s a physically big guy and he purposely chooses these sweet, defenseless little victims who loved and depended on him.

Do you have anything to add about fostering teenagers, adoption or Jerry Sandusky? I hate his guts.

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