Monday, July 2, 2007

Why Sooooooo slow?

(Dossiers awaiting a child match at the CCAA in China)

As I mentioned in a previous entry, the wait period for adopting from China (from dossier submission to referral) has increased from 6 months to 19 months with the likelihood of getting up between 24 and 36 months. We have no way of knowing when we will receive our referral for Lily.

For those of you who are curious about the causes of the slowdown, I'll explain it as well as I can with the limited amount of information that I have. The CCAA is the Chinese governmental organization that is responsible for the adoptions of Chinese children. The CCAA says that they have been receiving more dossiers from potential adoptive parents than the number of "paper ready" children that are currently needing families. "Paper ready" is a key part of this statement.

There are over 1,000 orphanages in China, it's currently estimated that only 1/3 of these participate in international adoption. A conservative estimate puts the number of orphans in China living in these institutions at 60,000. This is where the "paper ready" part comes in. Tens of thousands of children are not paper ready and are therefore not eligible for international adoption. China is obviously a huge country and it is difficult for them to micromanage over 1,000 orphanages. It is up to each of these orphanages to complete the extra paperwork required to make these children eligible for adoption. There are many reasons, mainly political and financial, why this does not get done. There are about 30,000 families waiting to adopt Chinese children and more importantly twice that many children waiting for families. I don't mind waiting for my daughter, but I think it's so sad that these babies and children have to wait so long for families and that some of them will never be placed. There has been some discussion about more orphanages getting into international adoption; I hope it happens soon. This is an incredibly complex issue, so please forgive my oversimplification of it.