Thursday, April 23, 2009

UPDATE: Status of Agencies with Expired Temporary Hague Accreditation

The following agencies were given a temporary one year Hague accreditation by COA last year, each of these accreditations has expired. Current agency status is listed.

1. Carolina Hope Christian Adoption Agency: Expired April 8, 2009. Now a part of Nightlight Adoptions. See: Adoption Agencies Join Forces to Offer Expanded International Services Plus Embryo Donation & Adoption GREENVILLE, S.C.-(Business Wire)-April 22, 2009

2. Premier Adoption Agency. DOS website is incorrect - Full accreditation received March 30, 2009 per Premier Adoption website.

3. The Florence Crittendon League - DOS website incorrect - Full accreditation granted March 2, 2009 per The Florence Crittendon League website.

4. Los Ninos - Expired March 31, 2009. Agency CLOSED. No information available on case transfers.

5. Hope For Children - Expired April 1, 2009. Agency CLOSED. Cases transferred as follows:
a) China, Ukraine, or Russia programs with HFC, please note that HFC recommends that you transfer to Adoption Associates, Inc.
b) India program with HFC, please note that HFC recommends that you transfer to Illien Adoptions International.
c) Colombia program with HFC, please note that HFC recommends that you transfer to Adoption by Shepherd Care.
d) If you have a home study in process, or are in need of a post-adoption report in the state of Georgia, HFC recommends that you transfer to Illien Adoptions International (404-815-1599). If you reside in another state and are in need of home study or post adoption services, please contact a licensed home study agency in your state for assistance.
e) If you did not submit an AGENCY RELEASE OF INFORMATION form to HFC to have your file transferred to another agency, please note that your file has been transferred to the State of Georgia. You may contact the state directly for further information. Please contact Sheila Waterman at 404-657-3562.

Gina Pollock

Monday, April 20, 2009

The best interests of the child: Children stolen for adoption- Guatemala and beyond

In 2006, 4 Guatemalan girls were stolen from their mothers. One of those girls was identified just prior to adoption and returned to her mother Ana Escobar. The other 3 girls are believed to be adopted by US adoptive parents who, through no fault of their own, are now faced with difficult issues.

I cannot imagine the fear, anger, and grief that the Adoptive Parents of these girls might be feeling now. It is certainly not fair that they find themselves in this situation.

Adoptive parents who may find themselves in the situation of parenting a child who may have been stolen should know that they are not alone; there are others who have walked this path. Many of these parents have chosen to establish a relationship with the child's first family.


You can read several cases of families who chose to open their adoption and establish relationships with their child's first families:

David and Desire Smolin
Julia and Barry Rollings
Mosley family

You can read stories of families who have not chosen to establish a relationship:

Wisconsin family
McKrola family
Borz family
In particular, here is a powerful video of Gustavo Tobar


Children grow fast, the needs of the infant are different than the needs of the teen and young's decisions impact a whole life.

Identifying an adopted child as a stolen child, does not automatically lead to returning the child to the first family. That has virtually never happened to US adoptive parents of a stolen international child.


For more than a year, the situations of three mothers of stolen children, Raquel, Olga, and Loyda, have been championed by Norma Cruz of the Survivors Foundation in Guatemala. Ms Cruz was one of 8 women worldwide who were recognized in March 2009, as Women of Courage by the US Secretary of State.

You can read about Raquel, Olga, and Loyda

For myself, the one thing that is very clear, is that the 3 mothers in Guatemala: Raquel, Olga, and Loyda, deserve to know where their child is currently living.

It is clear to me, that extensive DNA tests should be used to determine whether the children in question are the daughters stolen from Raquel, Olga,and Loyda. (Sadly, the original DNA tests performed in Guatemala were probably falsified.)

Disrupting the young girl's lives and abruptly returning them to their first mothers may not be in the girl's best interests.

But it is clear to me that it is in the best interest of the girls to be able to have a relationship with the mothers they were stolen from.

It is possible to do, and it is the right thing to do.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Mothers in Guatemala Demand Justice

Norma Cruz and members of The Survivor's Foundation (La Fundacion Sobrevivientes) are on the fourth day of strike in front of the Family Court Building in Guatemala City today. They are demanding justice be served for those responsible for the processing of four illegal adoptions.

In a shocking decision two weeks ago, attorneys and facilitators involved in the processing of the illegal adoption of Esther Sulamita, daughter of Ana Escobar, were found not guilty. The judge on the case stated not enough evidence despite the attorney's name and signature being on the falsified DNA test.

Ana's case was the first indisputable case of kidnapping where the child passed a DNA test for US immigration. Ms. Norma Cruz, Director of Sobrevivientes, is demanding justice be served and believes this is a case of impunity which often runs rampant in Guatemala.

Ms. Cruz demanded the return of three other stolen children believed to have been adopted and now living in the US. Daughters of Olga Lopez (known as "Cindy Garcia"), Loyda Rodriguez (known as "Dulce Maria" or "Karen Abigail") and Raquel Par (known as "Kimberli Azucena") are still missing. To date, the US adoptive parents have not come forward voluntarily.

A reward is now offered for information on these three girls. If you have any information on these children, please call (502) 2413-8888 EXT 2226 or The Survivor's Foundation at (502) 2230-4222 / 2251-9931 / 2232-7967 or

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Message from Cal Open

PEAR is a partner of Cal Open, a legislative movement in California to restore access of the Original Birth Certificate (OBC) to adult adoptees. We would like to encourage our members and all those in support of Open Records who may be in the Sacramento area to attend a rally in support of Cal Open and AB 372 just prior to the Assembly Judiciary Committee Hearing on the morning of April 28. Please see for more information on AB 372 and click on the red banner "Attend" for more information on the rally!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

PEAR Supports The Adoptee Rights Demonstration to be held in Philadelphia July 21, 2009

PEAR believe that ALL Americans have a right to access government records about their own lives. Adoptees should not be singled out as a class of persons to be denied this basic right. Adoption is about the formation of a family for the benefit and best interests of children, not the destruction of identity. That is why we are supporting the Adoptee Rights Demonstration, a rally and protest in Philadelphia, PA, at 11 AM on July 21, 2009. This rally will coincide with the opening day of the Legislative Summit of the National Conference of State Legislators. For more information, and to register, please see:

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Guatemala: Raid on Asociación Primavera April 7, 2009

Recently, there have been news reports in Guatemala that there was a raid on Asociación Primavera on April 7,2009. News reports have stated that 9 children were removed from the home in Palin

PEAR has confirmed through the DOS that NO children were removed from Asociación Primavera.

Two news articles below
April 12, 2009
Nine Tots Rescued From Illegal Adoption in Guatemala

GUATEMALA CITY – Nine children being subjected to illegal adoption were rescued Tuesday in the southern Guatemalan municipality of Palin, officials said.

A state prosecutor told Efe that the minors, ranging in age from 1 to 5, were found at a home that did not meet the required standards of hygiene.

The residence was run by the Primavera Association, which had no legal permit to operate in the Palin municipality, only in the Guatemalan capital, he said.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Update on Raided Hogars in Guatemala

Recently the DOS posted an update about the adoption cases from Casa Quivira and Semillas de Amor. A 3rd new location was mentioned: Asociacion Santa Lucia de la Flores Silvestres. This location may also be known as Hogar Santa Lucia de Las Flores Silvestres La Esperanza.

This hogar was raided in May 2008. It appears that 6 or 7 of the children taken were intended for adoption by US families. The DOS has only heard from 2 of those families.

According to PEAR's discussions with DOS, these children were moved to Hogar Remar. REMAR is located at:
Calzada Atanasio Tzul 23-41, Zona 12
Guatemala City
Ph: 2429-0400/ 5205-7823

If you believe that a child referred to you may have been at Asociacion Santa Lucia de la Flores Silvestres, and you have not yet contacted DOS, PEAR suggests you do so. You may contact DOS at

As always, you may contact PEAR at