August 6, 2010
“Why should I adopt internationally when there are so many children in need of a family in the United States?” As adoption professionals, this is a question that arises often in our practice. To be honest, it’s a question that I had before my eyes were opened to the international orphan crisis.
There are many ways to build a family and to provide orphaned children a loving home. We support all types of adoption. There are both benefits and risks associated with all adoption, and only the adoptive family can weigh the risks and benefits with respect to their family dynamic. MLJ Adoptions, Inc. prides itself on providing both international and domestic adoption services.
Inter-country adoption does hold a special place in our heart, and in the hearts of many, for several reasons. First, the shear number of orphaned children around the world is astounding. There are approximately 143 million orphans worldwide. With so many children in need, we feel that no child is more or less deserving of a family merely based on geographic location.
Second, many of the children are available for adoption internationally because of extreme poverty in the child’s country of origin. Parents in many impoverished countries are unable to meet even the most basic nutritional and health care needs of their children. While there is no doubt that poverty is a crisis in the United States, we are fortunate to have private, state, and federal financial assistance for families in financial crisis. Programs like Temporary Aid for Needy Families (TANF), Women Infants and Children (WIC), Medicaid, and the like are unavailable to much of the world.
Third, if biological parents are unable to parent their child in the United States, such children are able to reside with a foster family or be adopted as an infant (as there are more waiting families than infant children available for adoption). Additionally, those children aging out of foster care can take advantage of transitional housing and other charitable and governmental programs. Conversely, in many countries once a child reaches age 14 or 15 they are no longer permitted at the orphanage and must learn at a very young age to care for themselves with little or no assistance. Unfortunately, many of these children turn to a life of crime or prostitution out of desperation.
The team at MLJ Adoptions, Inc. is more than happy to answer any questions or concerns regarding both international and domestic adoption. Feel free to contact us at any time.