Friday, February 20, 2009

File of Russian Homestudy Providers missing PPR

A downloadable pdf file of the list of Homestudy Providers with missing Post Placement Reports can be found on PEAR's website at

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Home Study Agencies with Missing Post Placement Reports

For families currently in Process of a Russian adoption.

Please be aware that the Russian Ministry of Education and Science has just sent a letter to the regions with a list of Home Study Providers who have not followed through with their commitment to produce post placement reports. This would be mainly from 'independent' or non-accredited adoptions, or closed agencies. It may affect a pending adoption even if you are working with an Agency with a Russian permit but your homestudy agency is listed below.

If your Homestudy provider is listed below, it is possible your homestudy will not be accepted by the region, or by the judge at court time. You should speak to your placing agency for advice, and your homestudy agency to see if they are taking steps to provide the missing reports. You may need to locate another homestudy agency to complete your adoption process.

This is the official letter from the MOE to the regional databank operators. The original is in Russian.

This is the official list of homestudy agencies, it is mainly in English

The a list of homestudy agencies, organized by state, with minor corrections is below:

Unknown or State not listed:
[International Children's alliance] Internejshnl Childrens Allajns, Ink. - -
[Lifelink Bensville Home Society] Lajflink/Bensvill Houm Sosajeti - -
[Little Flower Adoptions] Littl Flauer Edopshns - -
[Paquette Children's Services] Poket Childrens Servisiz, Ink - -
[Seek International] Sik Internejshnal - -
[Sunny Ridge Family Center] Sanni Ridzh Femili Senter, Ink. - -
Jewish family service Metrovest - -
Licensed Master social worker – Malinda A. Perr - -
Sandra Carlson and Associates, Inc.. Child Pleysing Agency -

UK agency:
Norwood Jewish Adoption Society Broadway House 80-82 The Broadway Stanmore Middlesex UK HA7 4HB

Lifeline Children Adoption Services 2908 Pump House Road Birmingham AL 352433
Southern Social Works Inc. 3008 Shady Creek Lane Anniston AL 36207
Villa Hope International Adoptions 6 Office Park Circle Suite 218 Birmingham AL 35223

Childrens Homes 1502 East KiehlSherwood AR 72120

Arizona Family Adoption Services Inc 346 AZ 85004
Oasis Adoption Services Inc. 4420 West Oasis Drive Tucson AZ

[Adopt International] Dip International 121 Springdale Redwood city CA 94061
Accept an Adoption and Counseling Center 339 South San Antonio Road Suite 1A Los Altos CA 94022
Accros the World Adoptions 399 Taylor Blyd. Ste. 102 Pleasant Hill CA 94523
Adopt International 1000 Brannan Street # 301 San Francisco CA 94103
Angels` Haven Outreach 25134 Avenida Rotella Santa Clarita CA 91355
Famili Connection Adoptions 1120 Tully Road Modesto CA 95350
The Family Network Inc. Adoption Services 820 Bay Ave.Suite 206 Capitola CA 95010
Vista Del Mar 3200 Motors Ave Los Angeles CA 90034
Vista del Mar Cyild and Family Services Reiss-Davis Child Study Center - Home-Safe - Family Service of Santa Monica 3200 Motor Avenue los Angeles CA 90034

Adoption Homestudy Agency of Colorado 4685 West Princeton Avenue Denver CO 80236-3213
Friends of Children of Various Nations Inc 1562 Pearl Street Denver CO 80203

[One World Adoption Services] Van Vorld Edopshn Servisesb Ink. 1030 S Federal Suite 100 Hollywood FL
Adoption Home Stady Services Inc. 37118 Dogtrot St. New Port Richey FL 34655
Adoption Placement Inc. 1840 North Pine Island Rd Plantation FL 33322
Advocates for Children and Families 16831 N.E. Sixth Avenue North Miami Beach FL 33162
Children's Home Society of S. Florida 2100 45th Street West Palm Beach FL 33407
Chldren`s Home Society of Florida 415 Ave. A Suite 101 Ft. Pierce FL 34950
Commonwealth Adoption International Inc 13902 North Dale Mabry Hwy Suite 102 Tampa FL 33618
Family Creations Inc. 5550 26th Street West Suite 8a Bradenton FL 34207
Hope for Families : Adoption and Cancellin 207 1/2 east Orang Avenue Suite A Ft. Pierce FL 34950-4348
United Advocates for Families Inc. 23123 State Road 7 Suite 304 Boca Raton FL 33428

AAA Partners in Adoption Inc 5665 Highway 9 Suite 103-351 Alpharetta GA 30004
Adoption Planning Inc 17 Executive Park Drive Suite 290 Atlanta GA 30329
Elina Adoption Services Inc. 310 Saddle Ctreek Drive Roswell GA 30127
Families First Making Families Last 1105 West Peachtree Street N.E. P.O. Box 7948 Station C Atlanta GA 30357-0948
Family Counseling Center CSRA 630 Ellis Street Augusta Richmond GA
Illien Adoptions Internationai Inc. 1250 Piedmont Avenue NE Atlanta GA 30309

Adoption and Child Custody Studies 6868 NE Berwick Drive PO Box 618 Ankeny IA 50021
Williwam Pearce Adoptions 6868 NE Berwick Drive HJ Box 618 Ankeny IA 50071

Idaho Youth Ranch Adoption Services 2201 Government Way STE “J” Coeur D Alene ID 83814

[Illini Christian Ministries] Christian missionary org of Illinois 429 E Warren Box 200 St Joseph IL
[Illini Christian Ministries] Christian missionary org of Illinois 429 E Warren Box 200 St Joseph IL
Bethany Christian Services 9718 S Halsted St. Chicago IL 60628-1007
Catholic Charities of Joliet. 203 N Ottava st Joliet city IL 60432-4006
EuroAsian Adoption Consultants 4320 Winfield Road Ste 200 Warrenville IL 60555
Glenkirk 3504 Commercial Ave Northbrook IL 60062
Glenkirk 3504 Commercial Ave Northbrook IL 60062
Illini Children's Ministries 429 E. Warren St.Joseph IL 61873
International Children's Alliance 200 South Frontage Rd. Suite 330A Burr Ridge IL 60527
Jill M. Silvestri 1500 W/ Kennedy Road Lake Forest IL 60045
Sunny Ridge Family Center 2 Soutn 426 Orchard Road Wheaton IL 60187

Adoptions of Indiana 1980 116-th St. of.325 Carmel IN 460326
Children`s Bureau Inc. 615 North Alabama Street Ste. 426 Indianapolis IN 46204
KidsFirst Adoption Services, LLC 8580 Ctdar Place Drive Suite 120 Indianapolis IN 46240
Lutheran Child &Family Services of Indiana 1525 N.Ritter Ave. Indianapolis IN 46219
Paralegal On Call 275 Southwind Way Greenwood IN 46162

Adoption And Beyond 16236 Metcalf Avenue Overland Park KS 66085
Adoption Connections Inc 105 E. Rhondda Andover KS 67002
Special Additions Inc. 19055 Metcalf Ave. Stilwell KS 66085

Bluegrass Christian Adoption Services Inc. 1517 Nicholasville Road Lexington KY
NECCO the Power of Family 125 Eagle Nest Drive Paducah KY 42003

Saint Elizabeth Foundation 8054 Summa Avenue Suite A Baton Rouge LA 70809
Adoption Home Studies Inc 3433 Hwy 190 # 327 Mandeville LA 70471

Bright Futures Adoption Center 5 Broadview Street Acton MA 1720

Adoptions Together Inc. 5750 Executive Drive Suite 107 Baltimore MD 21228
DIAKON ADOPTION SERVICES 3805 N. Charles Street Baltimore MD 21218
The Adoption Resource Center Inc; 6630 Baltimore National Pike 205-A Baltimore MD 21228
The Adoption Resource Center Inc; 6630 Baltimore National Pike 205-A Baltimore MD 21228

Adoptees Help Adopt International 5955 North Wayne Road Westland MI 48185
Adoption Advocates 218 S/Main St. Rockford MI 49341
Adoption Options Worldwide Inc 5745 W. Maple Rd. Suite 214 W. Bloomfield MI 48322
Child and Family Services 2806 Davenport Saginaw MI 48602
Child and Parent Services 30600 Telegraph Suine 2215 Bingham Farms MI 48025
Christian Family Services 17105 W 12 Mile Rd Southfield MI 48076
International Adoption Assoc. Inc 517 Baldwin Avenue Jenison MI 49428

Crossroads Adoption Services 4620 West 77th Street Suite 105 Edina MN 55435
REACHING ARMS INTERNATIONAL 3701 WINNETKA AVE. NORTH NEW HOPE MN 55427 Summit Adaption Home Studies Inc. 1389 Summit Avenue St. Paul MN 55105

Creative Families Inc. 9378 Olive Blvd St. Louis MO 63132
Heart of America Family Services 3100 NE 83rd Street Suite 1401 Kansas City MO 64119
Lutheran Family and Children’s Services of Missouri 4201 Lindell Boulevard S.400 St. Louis MO 63108
Adoption Counseling 206 Austin St. A3 Columbia MO 65201

New Beginnings 2164 Southridge Drive Tupelo MS 38801
Southern Adoption 12511 Marty Stuart Drrive Philadelphia MS 39350
World Child Inc. 200-F Pass Road Gulfport MS 39507
World Child of Mississippi 2413 23rd Ave. Gulfport MS 39501

Life Line of Hope Adoptions 135 Kelly Road Kalispell MT 59901

North Carolina:
Children’s Home Society of North Carolina 604 Meadow Street Greensboro NC 27405
Lutheran Family Services in the Carolinas P.O. Box 12287 Raleigh NC 27605
Mandala Adoption Services 6601 Turkey Farm Rd. Chapel Hill NC 27514
Nathanson Adoption Services 6060 J.A.Jones Drive Suite 504 Charlotte NC 28287

New Hampshire:
Adoptive Families For Children Inc. 26 Fairview Street Keene NH 3431
Lutheran Social Services of Northern New England 261 Sheep Davis Rd. Suite A-1 Concord NH 3301

New Jersey:
Better Living Services Inc. 560 Spring Field Avenue Suite C Westfield NJ 07991-2969
The Children`s Home Society of New Jersey 635 South Clinton Avenue Trenton NJ 08611-1831

New Mexico:
La Familia Inc 707 Broadway NE Suite 103 Albuquerque NM 87102

Departament of Human Resources Division jf Child and Family Services 701 N. Pecos Building K Las vegas NV 89101-2411

New York:
Family Focus Adoption Services 54-40 Litte Neck Parkway Suite 4 Litte Neck NY 11362
Family Tree Adoption Agency 2 Crestmont Dr. Route 146 Clifton Park NY 12065
Heart to Heart Adoption 340 Central Park Avenue Scarsdale NY 10583
Jewish Child Care Association 120 Wall Street New York NY 10005
Karing Angels International Adoptions Inc. 302 Virginia Avenue Oceanside NY 11572-5433
New Beginnigs Family and Childrens Services Inc 141 Willis Avenue Mineola NY 11501
Small World Chity Inc 350 Fifth Avenue New York NY 10118
Spence-Chapin Services to Families and Children 6 East 94-th Street New York NY 10128-0698
The Family Tree Adoption Agency 2 Crestmont Drive C Clifton Park NY

A Child Waiting Worldwide Inc 3490 Ridgewood Rd Akron OH 44333
AdopTion By Gentle Care 3893 Library Pank South Columbus OH 43215
Adoption Specialists Inc. 3373 East Scarborough Road Cleveland Heights OH 44118
Worlds Together Inc. 6209 Bona Vista Place Cincinnati OH 45213

Bless This Child Inc. 10220 South Quebec Tulsa OK 74137
Crisis Pregnancy Outreach Inc 470583 Tulsa OK 74147
Crisis Pregnancy Outreach Inc. 11323 South Vine Jenks OK 74037
Natasha's Story Inc. 1554 South Yorktown Place Tulsa OK 74104
Oklahoma Home Study 1820 Threestars Road Edmond OK 73034

Angel Adoptions International P.O. Box 7361 Salem OR 97303
Dove Adoptions World Inc. 3735 SE Martins Portland OR 97202
Orphans Overseas 1486 NW Cornell Road Portland OR 97229
Tree of Life Adoption Center 9570 SW Barbur Boulevard Suite 304 Portland OR 97219

Adoption By Choice 2503 West 15th Street Suite Four Erie PA 16505
Adoption From The Heart Inc. 4331 North Front Street Harrisburg PA 17110
Catholic Social Service of Lackawanna County 400 Wyoming Avenue Scranton PA 18503-1272
Child and Home Study Associates 1029 N. Providence Road Media PA 19063
Children and youth dervice Administration Office:Central Park Complex 110Frankin Street Suite 400 Johnston PA 15901-1881
Covenant Family Resources 743 Roy Road King of Prussia PA 19406
Families International 1205 Farragut Street Pittsburgh PA 15206
First Steps International Adoption Inc R.R. 2 Box 38 Hawiey PA
ILB Adoption Agencu 734 Melboume st. Pittsburgh PA 15217
The Salvation Army 3055 College Heights Boulevard Allentown PA 18104

South Carolina:
A loving Choice International Inc 209 North Main Street PMB #103 Greenville SC 29601
Child of the Heart 1156 Bowman Rd. Ste. 200 Mt. Pleasant SC 29464
Worldwide Adoption Services Inc 187 North Church Street No city state given- Probably: Spartanburg SC 29306

Adoption Hromists [Promises] P.O.Box 253 Huntingdon TN 38344
Adoption Promises P.O. Box 253 Huntingdon TN 38344
Adoptions Consultants in Tennessee 8921 Shallowford Road Knoxville TN 37923
Heaven Sent Children Inc 307 North Walnut Street Murfreesboro TN 37130
Jewish Family Service of MetroWest 6560 Poplar Av. Memphis TN 38138

Adoption Access Inc 8330 Meadow Road suite 222 Dallas TX 75231
Adoption Agency 417 San Pedro San Pedro TX 78212
Adoption Servicies Associates 5370 Pru Road San Antonio TX 78240
AdoptionPros 1110 Kingwood Dr. Suite 200L Kingwood TX 77339
Adoptions International Inc. 7475 Skillman Suite 107D Dallas TX 75231
El Paso Adoption Services Inc. 905 Noble Street El Paso TX 79902
International Family Services 700 S. Friendswood Drive Suite B Friendswood TX 77546
Licensed Master Social Worker Ruth Alene Stratton 3419 Navasota Circle San Antonio TX 78259
Lutheran Social Services Of The South Inc. 8305 CROOS PARK DRIVE AUSTIN TX 78754

Children’s House International 1236 North 150 West American Fork UT 84003
Families For Children P.O. Box 521192 Salt Lake City UT 84152-1192
West Sands Adoptions 461 East 2780 North Provo UT 84604

Family Life Services 124 Liberty Mountain Drive Lynchburg VA 24502
Forever Families Adoption Services Inc 9 North Third Street Suite 100 13 Warrenton VA 20186
Frost International Adoptions Inc 6348 Lakeview Drive Falls Church VA 22041
Loving Families Inc. 102 South Whiting Street Alexandria VA 22304
Madison Adoption Associates 3357 Hillcrtst Drive Toms Brook VA 22660

Family Centr Lund 389 Warden Pond Road Barnet VT 5821

Faith International Adoptions 535 East Dock Street Suite 103 Tacoma WA 98402
Luteran Community Services Northwest 7 S.Howard St. Sbite 200 Spokane WA 99201
Lutheran Social Services 7 South Howard Stuite 200 Spokane WA
New Home Child and Family Agency 2611 Northeast 125th Street Suite 146 Seattle WA 98125

Adoption Choice Inc 924 E. Juneau Avenue Milwaukee WI 53202-2748
Adoption Services Inc. 911- of. # 2C North Lindeyl Drive Appleton WI 54914
Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Lacrosse 204 East Avenue 4th Floor Eau Claire WI 54701
Pauquette Children's Services 315 West Conant Street Portage WI 53901-0162
Special Children Inc. 15285 Watertown Plank Poad Suite # 3 Elm Grove WI 53122

Catholic Charities of Wyoming P.O. Box 1468 Cheyenne WY 82003-1468

Adoption Agencies with a Russian Permit for Adoption Activity

Agency Name ~ Russian Permit for Adoption Activity (formerly known as 'accredited')

ABC Adoption Services Inc ~ 28-Jan-08
Adopt-A-Child ~ 19-Jul-07
Adoption Associates ~ 19-Jul-07
Adoption Center of Washington ~ 26-Feb-08
Adoptions Together Inc ~ 14-Dec-07
Alaska International Adoption Agency (AIA) ~ 28-Dec-07
Alliance for Children ~ 22-Nov-07
Beacon House Adoption Services Inc ~ 28-Jan-08
Buckner Adoption and Maternity Services ~ 21-Jul-08
Catholic Social Services of the Diocese of Charlotte ~ 27-Jun-07
Children of the World Adoption Agency, NY ~ 14-Dec-07
Children's Home Society & Family Services (CHSFS) ~ 27-Jun-07
Children's Hope International ~ 14-Dec-07
Christian World Adoptions ~ 14-Dec-07
Cradle of Hope Adoption Center (COH) ~ 27-Jun-07 (reinstated)
Cradle Society (The Cradle) ~ 27-Jun-07
Creative Adoptions Inc ~ 14-Dec-07
Dove Adoptions International Inc ~ 26-Feb-08
European Adoption Consultants (EAC) ~ 19-Jul-07
Families Through International Adoption (FTIA) ~ 20-May-08
Florence Crittenton League of Lowell ~ 14-Dec-07
Frank Adoption Center-NC ~ 27-Jun-07
Gift of Life ~ 19-Jul-07
Gladney Center for Adoption ~ 14-Dec-07
Global Adoption Services Inc ~ 26-Feb-08
Hand in Hand ~ 26-Feb-08
Happy Families International Center ~ 22-Nov-07
Homestudies & Adoption Placement Services (HAPS) ~ 24-Dec-07
International Assistance Group (IAG) ~ 27-Jun-07
Life Adoption Services ~ 22-Nov-07
Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan ~ 3-Mar-08
Maine Adoption Placement Services (MAPS) ~ 14-Dec-07
New Hope Christian Services ~ 24-Dec-07
Nightlight Christian Adoptions ~ 24-Dec-07
Small World Adoption Foundation of Missouri ~ 12-Sep-07
Wide Horizons for Children ~ 22-Nov-07
World Association for Children and Parents (WACAP) ~ 14-Dec-07
World Child International ~ 28-Jan-08
Wyoming Children's Society ~ 19-Jul-07

A La Croisee Des Chemins ~ 14-Dec-07
Adoptiedienst Horizon ~ 22-Nov-07

Adoption Horizons Inc ~ 22-Nov-07
Caring Homes for Orphan Children (CHOC) Tzivos Hashem ~ 22-Nov-07
CHOICES Adoption ~ 3-Apr-08
Societe D'Adoption Quebecoise Une Grande Famille ~ 28-Aug-08

Pelastakaa Lapset ~ 24-Dec-07

De Pauline à Anaëlle Association ~ 28-Jan-08
Enfance Avenir ~ 19-Jul-07
L'Agence Française d'Adoption ~ 27-Jun-07

Diaconal Services of the Evangelical Church of the Rhein-Necker Region ~ 26-Feb-08

Atid Haieladim ~ 22-Nov-07
TAF ~ 19-Jul-07

ARAI - Regione Piemonte (ARAI) ~ 28-Dec-07 ~ corrected permit ~ 3-Apr-08
Associazione Amici dei Bambini (Ai. Bi.) ~ 14-Dec-07
Associazione Ariete ~ 28-Dec-07
Centro Internazionale per l'Infanzia e la Famiglia (CIFA) ~ 14-Dec-07
I Bambini dell'Arcobaleno ~ 28-Dec-07
La Primogenita International adoption ~ 28-Jan-08
L'airone - Adozioni Internazionali ~ 28-Dec-07
Nuova associazione di genitori insieme per l'adozione (NADIA) ~ 22-Nov-07
Servizio polifunzionale per l'adozione internazionale (SPAI) ~ 24-Dec-07
SOS Bambino International Adoption ~ 24-Dec-07

AIPAME ~ 19-Jul-07
ANDAI Asociación Nacional de Acogida Infantil ~ 24-Dec-07
Asociacion de Aydua a la Infancia del Mundo (AAIM) ~ 19-Jul-07
Association of Navarra Nuevo Futuro ~ 28-Jan-08
Creixer Junts ~ 24-Dec-07
Infancia y Futur ~ 3-Apr-08

Adopshunssentrum ~ 28-Jan-08

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Recent DOS Updates for International Adoption Programs; Guatemala, Cambodia, Brazil, Kyrgyzstan, Lesotho, Republic of Georgia


Adoption Alert

Bureau of Consular Affairs
Office of Children’s Issues

Update on Casa Quivira and Semillas de Amor Cases

February 5, 2009

Casa Quivira

According to our records, about 14 of the original 46 children at CQ still have cases pending. For six of these cases, the Attorney General’s Office (PGN) has identified irregularities. All six will have to be processed as abandonment cases; however, the Guatemalan government has agreed cases will be processed as transition cases and do not have to wait for the new procedures to drafted and implemented.

Semillas de Amor

The Embassy has obtained agreement from GOG officials that children whose adoptions have been completed, and who already have U.S. visas, should be allowed to leave the country. However, both the MP and PGN must complete their investigation and processing and then the Judge must lift to order for the children to stay at Semillas. Simply having the completed adoption and issued a visa will not automatically allow the child to leave Guatemala. Twelve more cases were released by the MP to PGN in January. According to the MP only five cases of the original 54 cases have irregularities; these likely will have to be processed as abandonments under Guatemala’s new laws.


Adoption Notice

Bureau of Consular Affairs
Office of Children’s Issues

February 13, 2009

On December 21, 2001 the processing of adoption petitions for Cambodia was suspended. This decision was based on numerous concerns related to fraud in Cambodia, as well as the lack of sufficient local legal frameworks and other safeguards to protect the children’s best interests. Due to continued concerns, U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services (USCIS) remains unable to approve any form I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative, filed on behalf of a child to be adopted from Cambodia. The USCIS suspension remains in effect for all I-600 forms that have been filed. For more information on the USCIS suspension please see the following link:
Based on the existing issues of fraud and irregularity in Cambodia, the Department of State (DOS) has reconfirmed the suspension of adoptions under the Hague process in Cambodia. It has been determined that at this time Cambodia is not meeting its obligations under The Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption. For these reasons the DOS remains unable to issue the required Hague Certificate or Hague Custody Declaration for any form I-800, Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child from a Convention country. The Department of State will continue to monitor the situation in Cambodia and will provide updates as soon as they are available.

Adoption Notice

Bureau of Consular Affairs
Office of Children’s Issues
February 13, 2009


We are working very closely with the Brazilian government to establish how the Hague Intercountry Adoption Convention, which entered into force for the U.S. in 2008, will affect future adoptions in Brazil. At the moment, parents should expect a lengthy process because there is currently no U.S. Hague-accredited adoption service provider working in Brazil. If you are not an immediate relative qualified to adopt via the Brazilian national adoption system, it is unlikely you will be permitted to adopt in Brazil for the foreseeable future. The Brazilian government has not yet passed adoption-related legislation, which may change the criteria by which U.S. adoption service providers are evaluated. Nor has Brazil re-opened the accreditation process for foreign service providers which would allow U.S. agencies to operate in Brazil. They are currently undertaking a review of all foreign service providers working in Brazil which may affect future evaluation criteria as well. These steps will likely take a year or more to be resolved. Prospective adoptive parents should also be aware that children available for international adoption in Brazil are generally over 5 years of age, sibling pairs, or have special needs.

Adoption Alert

Bureau of Consular Affairs
Office of Children’s Issues
February 13, 2009

The U.S. Department of State does not recommend that U.S. citizens consider adoption from Kyrgyzstan at this time. Currently, no adoption cases are being processed, including at least sixty-five adoption cases by U.S. citizens already in progress. In addition, the Kyrgyz government is considering significant changes to its adoption regulations.

The Kyrgyz Government has formed an adoption commission that includes officials from the Vice Prime Minister’s office, the Ministries of Education, Social Protection and Labor, Foreign Affairs, Internal Affairs, and Justice, as well as the General Prosecutor’s office. This commission is responsible for drafting new adoption policy and legislation, with special emphasis on clarifying the roles and responsibilities of the different agencies involved. The commission will recommend whether the Kyrgyz Republic should join the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption. The commission plans to report to Parliament by March 20; the Parliament will then choose what action it will take on these proposals. The Kyrgyz government does not intend to process any adoption cases, new or pending, until the adoption commission issues its report and Parliament has taken action on its recommendations.

Although the new legislation likely will not affect existing cases of children already matched with adoptive parents, it will allow the Ministry of Education authority to resume processing these adoption dossiers. New adoption cases would be subject to any new requirements established by Parliament.

The U.S. Embassy continues to monitor the situation and will provide clarification as soon as it is received.


Adoption Alert

Bureau of Consular Affairs
Office of Children’s Issues

February 12, 2009

Government of Lesotho

The Government of the Kingdom of Lesotho has lifted the suspension on intercountry adoptions for four countries: the U.S., Sweden, The Netherlands and Canada. The Government of Lesotho (GOL) plans to designate only one adoption agency per country which will be responsible for coordinating all adoptions, assisting in monitoring the progress of adopted children and providing follow-up reports to the Department of Social Welfare in the Ministry of Health. The Ministry of Health has designated Americans for African Adoptions, Inc. (AFAA) to coordinate intercountry adoptions for the U.S. The Department of Social Welfare is forming an adoption committee to liaise with the adoption agency and prospective adoptive parents to ensure adherence to the adoption process. There has been no change in GOL adoption laws, policies or procedures. However, the GOL requires any case that was in process at the time of the suspension to be reinstated. Any cases that were processed during the suspension are invalid and will require amendment of adoption documents by the High Court.

The U.S. Embassy in Lesotho and the Office of Children’s Issues will continue to monitor the situation and will provide further information on as it becomes available.


Adoption Notice

Bureau of Consular Affairs
Office of Children’s Issues

February 5, 2009

The U.S. Department of State does not recommend that U.S. citizens begin new adoption cases from Georgia at this time because of changes in the country’s intercountry adoption process. The Georgian Government has recently transferred responsibility for adoptions from the Ministry of Education to the Ministry of Health, and the Ministry of Health is currently in the process of developing procedures both to refer children to prospective adopting parents and to review and process adoption cases to completion.

According to local experts, no new international adoption cases are being processed at this time.

The U.S. Embassy continues to monitor the situation and will provide updated information as soon as it is received.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Focus On Children - Sentencing scheduled for February 19

Sentencing for Focus on Children's Karen and Scott Banks, Dan Wakefield, Coleen Bartlett and Karalee Thornock is scheduled for February 19, 2009. In January, they pleaded guilty to counts of aiding and abetting the improper entry of an alien for putting false information on immigration forms during the performance of adoption services relating to FOC's Samoa program. Although the plea agreements have a recommendation for probation, U.S. District Judge David Sam may impose up to six months on each count and a $5,000 fine.

Transparency, honesty and full disclosure during the adoption process are vital to the integrity of adoptive families. Conduct such as that displayed by Focus on Children cannot be tolerated. The families and children involved in this case deserve justice.

For more information on this case please see:
Adoption Scandal Has Prompted Only Minor Changes
Focus on Children Defendants in the case likely to get probation.

By Pamela Manson, The Salt Lake Tribune, Posted: 02/14/2009 02:29:00 PM MST

If you would like to express your opinions on the sentencing of Focus on Children defendants, please send letters to:

The Hon. Judge David Sam
United States Court for the District of Utah
350 South Main Street
Salt Lake City, UT 84111

Below is a letter sent to Judge Sam by PEAR board member Barbara McArtney:

Dear Judge Sam,

I am writing you concerning the sentencing of Karen and Scott Banks and the proposed plea deal. I was stunned to hear that anything other than a prison sentence was proposed and hope that you will see justice is done in this case.

I am an adoption provider, parent of internationally adopted children and an adoptee. Adoption is an activity that should be motivated by humanitarian interests not greed. Providers have a legal and moral obligation to place child and family welfare first and foremost. To do otherwise is a grave violation of the rights of birth parents, children and adoptive parents alike.

The Bankses engaged in heinous activity ripping apart families, stealing children, lying and committing fraud as adoption professionals. They have ruined many lives. Other criminals have gone to jail for far, far less. Perhaps even more troubling is their trail of dumped adopted children that show even in their own family they have no regard for human life. Though this conduct may not be criminal, it is a strong indication of how little respect and concern they have for children's welfare.

Adoptive parents come to providers in a very vulnerable position. They are emotional and unknowledgeable about the legal process, a combination that makes them easy prey for those looking to make money. The international adoption industry is largely unregulated with the state patchwork of laws having little relevance, let alone protection over foreign proceedings. Parents rely completely upon their agencies to follow the law and operate ethically. Consular screening is generally cursory at best and is not a substitute for good ethical agency practices. Parents have little to no recourse when things go wrong.

Despite numerous instances of fraud in international adoptions, with many countries closing for similar child trafficking, it is rare that evidence is available against a US citizen that allows prosecution. Developing countries lack the resources to protect impoverished families considering adoption. It is up to the United States to act decisively in the rare instances that a case is prosecutable. For those cases, it is critical that the legal process sends a loud, clear message. Fraud, trafficking and corruption will not be tolerated and will be punished proportionately to the enormous damage done by such profiteers. To give a mere slap on the wrist only encourages others to cross legal boundaries to get rich in this lucrative business and is a slap in the face to those families torn apart by this criminal behavior.

Much needs to be done on a legislative and international basis to improve adoptions, but this case is truly a golden opportunity to make it perfectly clear that the utmost due diligence and ethical judgment must be exercised when conducting adoptions. That fast and loose practices, deceit and theft will never be allowed especially when American's operate in vulnerable populations. Punishment will be meaningful not token.

Please sentence the Bankses to the substantial prison time they clearly deserve. Not only will the Bankses and their victims receive the justice they deserve but you will be deterring other providers tempted to follow in their footsteps to profit from illegal adoptions. Much future heartache to other families may be prevented by a firm stance against this sort of reprehensible criminal conduct.
Respectfully submitted,

Barbara J McArtney

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Announcing Ethica's Webinars for Prospective Adoptive Parents

Ethica is pleased to offer its first webinar series for prospective adoptive families as they begin to pursue the adoption process. Please join us as we explore issues surrounding adoption fraud, how to choose an agency, and the implications of adopting from a "Hague" country. Note that *space is limited* so please register early. Thank you!

*Webinar** 1: February 25th, 7-8:30PM EST*
*"Adoption Fraud 101: What to look out for in your international adoption

Many adoptive families rely on testimonials from other adoptive families as well as information from their adoption agency to prepare for the adoption process. However what many families are unaware of are the uncertainties that can come with their adoptions; policy changes by both sending and receiving countries, as well as unethical and sometimes illegal practices leading to adoption fraud. Ethica has assisted hundreds of families who were unable or barely able to complete their adoptions as a result of crises that could have either been avoided or handled to meet the best interests of the child involved. This workshop will guide families through what to look for in their contracts (gag clauses, refunds), what are reasonable requests from your agency (fee changes, foster care, etc.), and examples of adoption fraud that have led to indictments and lawsuits. Attendees will be better able to advocate for themselves to their agencies as well as to state and federal
authorities. Register Here

*Webinar** 2: March 18, 7-8:30PM EST*
*"From Good Samaritans to Convicts - How to Choose an Ethical International
Adoption Agency"*

The most common request Ethica receives is, "how can families choose an ethical adoption agency?" Families are increasingly aware of adoptions being in limbo, stretching out for years, or not being completed at all due to unethical agency practices. This workshop will cover the basics on what to look for in an agency, what best practices are used and recognized within the adoption service provider community, as well as where the most common concerns are regarding establishing a child's status as an orphan (according to international and U.S. laws). Case studies of agency practices will be covered with first person accounts, as well as insight from agency personnel and government representatives. Attendees will have a greater understanding
of what resources are available to them and ways to evaluate agency promises and performance. Register Here

*Webinar** 3: April 8, 7-8:30PM EST*
*"The Hague Convention 1 Year Later: Successes and Drawbacks"*

The Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption was ratified by the U.S. in April 2007, after nearly 15 years after signing the agreement. Since then, the U.S.has gone down the path of accrediting adoption agencies and encouraging sending countries to "become Hague." This workshop will give an overview of the Convention's history, incentives for families to adopt from Hague countries, and case studies of the Hague's successes and drawbacks with insight from adoption policy experts and adoption agency personnel. Attendees will gain a greater understanding of how the Hague impacts their adoptions (China, Guatemala, El Salvador, strong potential for Ethiopia and Vietnam). Register

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

PEAR Observational Survey - Post Adoption Services

PEAR invites all adoptive parents to take the PEAR Observational Survey of Adoptive Parents on Success, Satisfaction and Types of Post-Adoption Services (POSitive Study).

This survey is for those who have completed a domestic or international/inter-country adoption from any country. Whether your child has had virtually no issues or interventions or many, we would like your input!

This anonymous survey is in English. One survey would need to be taken per child. It will take between 20 and 40 minutes to complete depending on the amount of services you have used. The survey includes questions about adoption professional follow-up; financial and life insurance; International Adoption Clinic and medical doctor follow-up; early intervention services(US only); mental health/attachment services; faith-based services; school-based services; testing, therapies and at-home interventions.

We seek to address gaps in post-adoptive support and provide free information to adoptive parents. Starting in 2009, we will be sharing explanations of interventions and practical tips.

Our goal is to bring health care sectors together to solve the gaps brought to light in the survey. Ultimately, we want to recommend a healing roadmap that will have an interactive flowchart to assist parents in determining timing and types of interventions.

You can access our survey at the following link or go to our website at and access it there.

You will also find on our website a free, comprehensive listing of 128 international adoption doctors and other issues we are currently addressing. Click on the Files Pear