TOGETHER, WE CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE.
Here at The Archibald Project we care about all aspects of orphan care. However, one trend in the Western World that we have noticed is an increase in uneducated international adoption/funding. While we understand the need for adoption we believe it should always be the last resort an organization seeks for a child's life.
If you or someone you know desires to move forward with an international adoption please carefully consider the following advice:
1.) Before you sign an agreement with any agency ask them - What portion of your payments are sent directly to orphanages and do the orphanages you work with receive funding per child they place in an international adoption? ~ How do you hold your international partners accountable for finances and ethics? ~ How do you ensure that the children you are facilitating adoptions for actually need to be adopted and do not have family members who want them? ~ Can I hire a 3rd party to investigate the orphanage and child I am matched with? ~ Does anyone benefit financially in the U.S. when a child is adopted internationally? (ex. end of year bonus or commission like pay based on number of adoptions one facilitates.)
2.) Ask yourself WHY you want to adopt internationally. There are over 400,000 children in the U.S. Foster Care system in the United States and over 94,000 children in the system in the U.K. It is not bad to desire to adopt internationally but we have seen that healthy and honest adoption practices are not set up for vulnerable children and families in many developing countries. There is a high chance if you adopt from the continent of Africa you are adopting a child with: brothers and sisters, one or both alive parents who desire to parent their children. If you truly want to help a child living in an orphanage just think what help you could bring if you took the thousands of dollars spent on international adoption and donated them to organizations who are supporting birth mothers and fathers to keep their children in their families...if this thought bothers you we humbly challenge you do question you root motivation of wanting to adopt internationally in the first place. ("But how do I find an organization doing this type of work in a country I've never been to?" Helpful tip: search for EXPATS who live in the country you are seeking to adopt from and reach out. Ask if they have ever heard of ethical organizations working to keep families. We promise, you will pretty much always be able to find someone from your country who is up to date on orphan care organizations to trust, it just may take some internet investigation on your part.
Before donating to an organization:
1.) Ask to see their financial records for the past few years AND how they keep their in country partners financially accountable.
2.) Ask what benefits and/or financial incentives any employees have for working for their organization. (Other than providing for the family and pouring into the local economy there shouldn't be any).
3.) If it is an orphanage, ask where they get their children and how they work to resettle their children with family/local families AND what their ratio of resettling to adoption is...if adoptions are higher this is probably a red flag. (Expert Tip: Often times the existence of an orphanage causes vulnerable families to drop their children at orphanage's doors in hopes of a better future when really the family deeply desires to keep their children but they feel as if there is no other way. There is 99% always another way.)
Below are organizations who we have personally worked with in some capacity and wholeheartedly believe in their ethical approach to caring for orphan and vulnerable children. If you would like to get involved with one of these organizations please let them know The Archibald Project sent you so that we can keep track of our advocacy impact!
Our Favorite Organizations
(The Archibald Project has not been paid or asked by anyone affiliated with the organists below to make the list below)
An independent, non-governmental, social development organization that has been providing support to those in need since 1952. India.
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