We’re no pros on adoption from Ukraine but we’ve had some questions we’ll try to answer. If those of you more experienced find errors, please correct us gently in the comments and we’ll edit to correct this post.
What agency did we use?
Adoption agencies are not recognized in Ukraine, they cannot do an adoption on your behalf or represent you. They may assist with collection of the dossier paperwork in the US and have a Ukrainian facilitator/translator who works with you in country.
The required homestudy has to be done by a home study agency licensed in the state of the family’s residence and the license of the social worker is included with the homestudy in the dossier.
We did not use an adoption agency, our adoption is totally independent. We have personally hired private Ukrainian facilitators who know the laws and procedures and also serve as translators. With the internet offering skype, email and chat it is as easy to work directly with a Ukrainian facilitator yourself as it is to talk with your neighbor. We are “do-it-yourself” kind of folks. We do everything this way and always prefer being directly involved in every step of anything. We are doing our adoption the same way. We contacted our facilitators directly and worked with them every step of the way. It was wonderful to step off the plane to folks we already knew and had been establishing a relationship with for over a year.
Are the orphanages government or privately operated?
There are both. As we understand the majority are government operated. The only ones we have had contact with have been government orphanages. The head of each orphanage is called a Director. We are not familiar with the exact chain of command of authority above them. In the legal process we first met with an Inspector who serves several orphanages in a city or area, then the Director who introduced us to the children.
Today we petitioned to have our case heard in court. Tomorrow we will learn of the court date and assigned judge. There is also a prosecutor whose job it is to see that all is done according to the law.
We are hopeful that our court date will be by the end of next week. Then there will be a mandatory 10 day waiting period for any appeals to be filed. If the Lord allows, following this we will receive the court decree declaring us the parents of these children. The next step will be securing new birth certificates for them. They will have the same registration number as their original birth certificates so they can be traced as the same person but will list their new names and us as their parents. Then application is made for a Ukrainian Passport. Upon receipt of the passport we will depart for Kiev for required medical exams for the children and to receive their US Visas for entrance into America and the process in Ukraine will be complete.
Upon arrival home there is another wave of paperwork to complete to receive their US Passports, etc. but we’re not acquainted with the details of that yet, so that will be another post during that season.
Thank you for your prayers and kind comments and emails. We cherish each one. This is tough, heavy stuff and this ended as a tough day.
It started off wonderfully with a delightful tea with 4 of the young ladies and gentlemen. They fixed delicious tea flavored syrup 🙂 and served it to us with the most delicious cookies. In the middle of tea, we got a call to make a fast dash to the Courthouse to file the petition for court and then walked back to resume our visit.
As the day wore on we realized exhaustion, both physical and emotional, is setting in for us. The children also seemed very tired today after 3 separate trips to the hospital for their required exams along with the intensity of emotion of the past few days. We got in a little work on English and in spite of the fatigue, it is always a joy to be with them. We look forward to a looong night’s rest and our visit tomorrow afternoon.
Tomorrow we are going to do a fun project with all of the children…origami paper cranes that will benefit the children of Japan so affected by the recent earthquake and tsunami and resulting nuclear disaster. For every origami crane made, up to 50,000, OshKosh will donate a piece of clothing to the children of Japan.
A friend has verified with OskKosh that this is a valid promotion. Check it out and join in at http://www.oshkoshbgosh.com/Cranes-For-Kids/cranes-for-kids,default,pg.html?id=oshkosh
We’ll be submitting a photo of the cranes made by the orphans and will also post it here in the coming days. We’d love to see your photos too!! Email them to us, and if you give your permission, we’ll post them here along with ours!!