Yesterday was a very emotional day. Through several weeks of discussion, prayer and research we have decided to terminate our adoption process within Nepal. This is not a decision that we take lightly as it was a year of our lives we became aware of and attached to the great land of Nepal. The need in that small country is so great. Children need homes and their government needs resolution and peace. We hope some stability can soon be found in the Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare as it has been a moving target over the past few months and no adoptions have been completed. This has been tough to swallow for people like us who think people should do what they say. We live in a place where justice is far more prevalent and although things are not perfect we have many government run programs that can assist women and children in challenging times. This is not so in a country such as Nepal. Children simply learn to live on the streets, often being lead by pimps who help them get addicted to glue so they will beg in the streets for money to buy more glue. The money then falls into the hands of corrupt persons who care not for the children. When Nepal reopened their adoption program 8 months ago the political situation was running smooth and we were told they would require one trip to pick up our child of up to 10 days. We were told the Ministry was all in place and we were told they they would be very transparent in their attempt to provide adoptive parents with excellent background information. So far this has not happened. Our agency is not to blame. In fact I dialogue through a yahoo group with people from all over the world looking to adopt from Nepal. They are people who have been to Nepal, studied Nepal and spend endless hours combing the Nepali government websites trying to figure all this turmoil out. The Nepali government is to blame. They should not have told people this would be an 11-14 month process when they did not have proper officials in place. In addition to their lack of readiness, the number or orphans continues to climb and there are fewer foreigners visiting the land that needs their tourism industry to thrive. Lastly, the King was thrown out of Nepal causing a million issues and many delays in all things government related. So why am I telling you all this? Well it is important to us that those of you who have followed and supported us in this journey know that we hope others will join us in praying for the government of Nepal. Pray for children of Nepal and the families who are on board in adopting from Nepal. Many have invested far more time than we have in choosing their child to come from Nepal.
For us this has become a challenge that we could no longer handle. Way back 18 months or so we spent numerous hours agonizing over where we should adopt from. Many of you know that we felt very drawn to both Ethiopia and Nepal. We chose Nepal. Believe me when I say that it is tough to not feel that we made a mistake, however it gets us no where and we know that God still has a child that we are meant to adopt. During a lengthy discussion with the Executive Director of All God’s Children International (AGCI), Doug, he made an interesting comment that we have felt as a family. He said, “We have been doing adoptions for so long and so often we see that God selects and ordains families. Nearly every family we have worked with says they felt God’s pull and force in their lives to adopt.” It is a strange phenomenon and one we sort of wished had gone away recently. There have been times we felt doubtful and down about whether this was right for us at all. That feeling comes with the territory but both Bob and I can now say that we feel like a giant weight has been lifted in recognizing that the uncertainty and lengthening timeline in Nepal was not for our family. It is not the thought of adopting we were needing to squelch just the crazy roadblocks we were encountering with Nepal.
So Ethiopia it is and we are thrilled. AGCI has a program that is truly thriving and as we have learned with international adoption over the past year, nothing is guaranteed but the process is a well oiled machine with many families I have followed through blogs going through it before us. The AGCI Ethiopia group is very tight and we will have so many people to guide us along the way. The best reason to choose Ethiopia is the need. There are so many orphans and we can’t wait to lower that number by one. AGCI owns and operates an orphanage, Hannah’s Hope, in the capital of Ethiopia, Addis Abbaba. It is a remarkable place of love and hope for children. It is a place that drew us in several years ago when we were considering agencies and I was exploring the work that AGCI does around the world. It is a place we can return to someday to donate our time and energy. It is the place where we will find a precious little girl who will thrive with three wild and crazy brothers who will love her to pieces. Adopting within Ethiopia is now a simpler process, although it still could take up to a year. We may request a toddler so that may help the process move more quickly. In Ethiopia the main reason children are orphaned is different from other areas of the world. They are orphaned due to AIDS. Many of the children remain with parents until the end. Children are all very well respected and cared for in Ethiopia but sometimes there is no family left to care for them. There are very few countries on the continent of Africa that are open to adoption but it must be the world’s hope that more children are allowed to be adopted due to the ongoing prevalence of AIDS. We look forward to better educating ourselves about the “Land of a Thousand Smiles” and thanks to all of you for your support and kindness as we change gears and push forward with great anticipation.
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