When considering where to adopt from, it's important to recognize that the adoption process is a complex journey of the head and the heart.
At The Barker Adoption Foundation we recommend you learn as much as you can about adoption in general, and adopting internationally, and then, before you proceed, be honest with yourself about what’s truly important to you and your family.
The first consideration is whether you are eligible to adopt on the basis of the country's guidelines. Each country sets its own criteria for adoptive parents. Your ages and health as prospective parents, your marital status, the number of years you have been married, and whether you have other children are among the factors that affect your eligibility. You can find more details in this comparison chart, on each program’s page or by contacting us directly for information specific to your family.
Barker staff can help you better understand our international partnerships and help you prioritize which factors are most important in choosing the program that would be the best fit for your family and the prospective adoptive child. Staff help you learn about the particular needs of the children in each country who seek permanent loving families and recommend resources and information for learning more about the culture, history, and traditions of the country. Barker also recommends that you try to remain as flexible as possible, as conditions and opportunities in international adoption programs change from time to time.
Here are other factors to consider when evaluating whether international adoption is a good fit for your family and, if so, from which country to adopt a child. Barker staff are available to answer your questions and point you to additional relevant resources.
Adoption-Related Issues to Consider in Assessing Countries:
- Quantity and quality of information on the child and birth parents
- Medical treatment and expertise (medical resources, availability of care, and reliability of information)
- Quality of the facilities and care where children are staying, including staff to child ratio
- Extent of the information available about the program
- Length of time the adoption program has operated (to assess experience and stability)
- Ease of communication with the country and its receptiveness to inquiries
- Predictability and reliability of the country's legal system for adoption
- Experience of other people in adopting through the program
- Stability of the country's political system, including the presence of an adoption process and, if present, its predictability
- Possibility of maintaining a relationship with the international adoption agency, orphanage, or foster family
Additional Considerations in Building Your Long-Term Vision of "Family":
- Your degree of interest in the culture
- Your extended family’s and your community’s attitudes toward this culture
- Racial and ethnic heritage of the children
- Ages of the children
- Health needs of the children
- Financial resources needed for adoption fees and international travel
- Length of the wait before and after the referral of the child
- Travel requirements
For more detailed information on the costs, guidelines, and time frames of each program, click here.