|Adopting from Haiti|
Haiti has a large number of black infants available for adoption, and many Alberta families have been blessed to receive a beautiful Haitian toddler into their home.
More than 7 million people live within Haiti’s mountainous 10,000 square miles, making Haiti the most densely populated and poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere. The average Haitian earns less than $300 per year. Most babies do not live to see their third birthday. Drinking water usually comes from a polluted river, ditch or open pond. Food is so scarce and expensive that most Haitian children receive less nutrition than the average American house pet.
The people of Haiti are descendants of slaves brought over from America centuries ago. In 1804, Haiti became the first Black Republic in the world, gaining its independence by driving out the French Colonists. The decades of self-rule since then have not been easy ones, especially for the rural Haitians. Today, the struggle is for independence and freedom from poverty, illiteracy, lack of education…freedom from malnutrition, disease, and the dark fear of the Voodoo religion. Children surviving the earth quake may be separated from their families and may yet be reunited with them. Children in orphanage care prior to the disaster are presently available.
Adoption a child internationally is truly a rewarding experience, but not a journey to be embarked upon without considerable thought and prayer. It is an emotional roller coaster as you await the arrival of your child, not knowing when they will arrive, how well they are cared for, or how much longer the red tape of governments far away will keep them from you. Couples wait several months after documents are completed, for proposals for infants as young as 6 weeks at the time of matching and can expect to receive the child home a year to 18 months later. Many orphanages prefer to match infants over 9 months old, so there is more time to watch their medical progress. Families can expect to receive placement of a toddler or preschooler.
Currently, Haitian authorities are allowing only some crèches to participate in the International Adoption program. Historically, many of our families have worked with:
This is a Christian Hospital that provides care for sick infants and will process adoptions when one of their infants is declared abandoned. Regular e-mails about the situation in Haiti are provided. Couples or singles need to travel to Haiti, or can have Dixie bring the child to Canada. Accommodation in Haiti is provided at about $25 US a day. At present new applications are on hold.
Haiti Children’s Home www.haitichildrenshome.com
Pat and Melinda have been missionaries in Haiti for some time and assist couples adopting from their orphanage, if they are practicing evangelical Christians. Also, many work teams travel there; they are well known for their work in the community. Proposals come quickly, and the rural area where the orphanage is has courts still operating. For information contact Patti Vold at 403-783-6079.
There are others. Do some research to find an orphanage you would like to work with.
Please remember sending countries are not consistent in care of infants and in the times projected for your child to arrive. Assume your process will be about two years after you have completed all your documents
Couples report total costs vary from $18,000 - $20,000, depending on the rate of exchange, price of plane tickets and other variable expenses.
As of 2013, there are 5 agencies that are accredited to coordinate Haitian adoptions for Canadian families. Families must use a Coordinator if proceeding with an adoption from Haiti.
In Alberta, your process will include:
Afro Canadian Support Group
The Afro-Canadian Adoption Support Group is a group for families who have adopted black children. The group meets approximately four times a year, giving trans-racial families a chance to see that there are many other families just like theirs! They plan picnics, camp outs, gym nights, and attend Carifest together. If you would like to attend any of the groups’ gatherings in Calgary, either before or after adopting, please contact Esther Cross at 403-337-3471. In Edmonton, the last Friday morning of the month, there is a playgroup for trans- racial families; call Kathy Williams at 780-438-3455.