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Championing the Waiting Child

Orphan Care Orphanage Support Colombia South Africa

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  Written by Spence-Chapin International Adoption Staff on 21 Jan 2016

In the summer of 2012 Spence-Chapin’s staff traveled to Colombia and South Africa to explore opportunities to expand our reach to help more children. Visiting these countries and meeting with their child welfare representatives solidified our resolve to find adoptive homes for children there. During our trips, we witnessed the love and care these children receive but also were acutely aware of the staff making do with what little resources they had. In each country we clearly observed the changing face of adoption and saw the many school-aged children, sibling groups, and children with special needs who are waiting for a family of their own. 

Our time in Colombia was inspiring, encouraging and sobering. Having met with the Instituto Colombiano de Bienestar Familiar (ICBF – The Colombian Institute of Family Welfare within the Ministry of Social Protection), our staff was impressed by the level of care provided to the approximately 9,000 children in their custody. In each adoption house we visited, we encountered psychologists, social workers, and other professional staff helping children prepare for adoption, and yet no forever families were on the horizon for these children.

 In South Africa there is no question about the number of children needing permanency. As one of just two U.S. agencies approved by the South African Central Authority to place children with American families, we are delighted to partner in this initiative with Jo’hburg Child Welfare Society (JCW). Our similar mission and history of having worked together on our Granny program, make this partnership a natural fit.

There is much talk about the changing face of adoption, but what we know has not changed is the number of chil­dren, particularly older children, sibling sets, and children with special needs, waiting to be adopted. Spence-Chapin has refocused efforts to help all families afford adoption by offering Adoptionships and specialized pre-adoptive parent preparation and training that will enable families to feel more confident about opening their homes to these children. It is with your ongoing commitment and needed support that we move forward with passion and dedi­cation as we refine our vision and enhance our services to these resilient children and their adoptive forever families.

 




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