China Adoption FAQ

Below are the answers to some of the most common questions that our matching specialists hear from families about the China adoption process. If you would like more information contact our China adoption specialists today!

Q: Are the children on your site available for adoption?

A: The children on our photo listing are all either available for placement or have been recently matched through the Special Focus or LID track. Children not on the photo listing have generally already been placed with a family, and are, therefore, not available for placement. Please reach out to our Matching Specialists to learn more about our available children!

Q: We do not live in Texas, can we still work with GWCA?

A: If you live outside of Texas, Great Wall is happy to assist you with your adoption. Although your home study agency must be licensed to perform home studies in your state, your adoption agency can be located anywhere in the US. This allows you to choose an agency based on experience and reputation, rather than location. If you already know which home study agency you are working with, just let us know. If you do not have a home study agency, we will refer you to a reputable Hague-accredited agency located near you. In Texas and Florida, Great Wall is licensed to provide a home study services for you.

Q: How many children does Great Wall place each year?

A: Great Wall has a long-standing history as one of the leading adoption agencies in the US. Since being founded in 1996, GWCA and their sister agency CAN have placed hundreds of children with US families! In 2016, our agency placed 175 children! If you choose Great Wall, you will be working with a well-established, stable organization that will recognize your individual needs throughout your adoption journey.

Q: What is the general cost of adopting from China?

A: Most families where two parents are going to pick up one child end up spending $29,000 – $35,000 total on their overall adoption costs. This amount is with all adoption costs including agency fees, dossier paper chase, home study, USCIS costs, China Legal Fees, Orphanage Donation Fee and Travel costs combined. Costs vary somewhat depending on where in China your child is located, what time of year you are traveling, how many people you are bringing on your trip, etc. This overall amount is not due all at once but will be spread out over your entire adoption process.

Q: Does Great Wall offer a discount if we have adopted from China previously?

A: Yes, Great Wall offers a discount for families who go through our China adoption program a again! You can ask our Adoption Consultant for details about this discount.

Q: Can we adopt more than one child at a time?

A: Yes, families are able to adopt two unrelated children from the China program. Families are able to adopt two children simultaneously, meaning that they are both being matched on one dossier. You are also able to do a dossier copy for a second child. This refers to the process of updating your existing dossier in order to be matched with a second child within one year of the finalization of the initial adoption.

 

 

 

Q: Does Great Wall work with specific orphanages?

A: Great Wall works with all welfare homes authorized by the CCCWA. Many of the files of children that we receive are requested from the shared listing, which is the listing of all available children that agencies worldwide have access to. We also receive a large majority of the files for children from our 19 orphanage partnerships!

 

 

Q: If one parent is 30 and the other parent is 29, when would we be able to send our dossier to China? Do we need to wait until the younger spouse turns 30?

A: Both parents must be 30 at the time that the dossier is sent to China or at the time a match is official made with a child. We recommend starting the process when the youngest parent is about 6 months from turning 30, that way a significant amount of the dossier process can be accomplished prior to the parent’s 30th birthday.

Q: Can you provide us with a list of home study agencies in our area?

A: If you are a family who lives in Texas or Florida, a Great Wall social worker will be doing your home study for you. If you live outside fo Texas or Florida, once you join our agency, your dossier specialist will help you find a Hague and/or COA accredited home study agency in your state to help you do your home study.

Q: Can we work with a home study agency that is not on your list?

A: If you live in Texas or Florida, you must use one of Great Wall’s social workers. If you live outside of Texas and Florida you can use any Hague and/or COA accredited home study agency you want.

Q: How do I know if an agency is Hague Accredited?

A: The State Department’s website provides a list of agencies who received their full or temporary accreditation and those who were denied. Great Wall China Adoption is Hague accredited.

Q: How do we get our 12 hours of the Hague training?

A: The Hague training courses can be purchased through our agency and taken online. Our dossier specialists will notify you as to which courses are needed.

Q: In general, how long does the dossier process take?

A: Most families can complete the entire dossier process (this includes your home study) in about 6 months.

Q: What information should be included in the application letter?

A: After you contract with our agency to start the adoption process, you will be assigned a Dossier Specialist to help you through the Dossier process. They will give you a guide that will help you complete the different documents required for your dossier. In that guide you will have instructions and an example of what an application letter should look like. If you have any questions about your application letter, your Dossier Specialist will assist you.

Q: How long after we receive our referral will we travel?

A: After you receive your official referral, called your LSC (Letter Seeking Confirmation), it is typically 3 – 3.5 months until you travel to China to pick up your child.

Q: Which flights does Great Wall arrange for us?

A: All of your China intra-country travel and accommodations will be arranged and booked by Great Wall, so you don’t have to worry about booking anything within China. The only flights you will need to book for your trip will be your international flights to and from China.

Q: Can we bring additional family or friends with us to China?

A: You can absolutely bring additional friends and family with you to China!

Q: Who will pick us up from the airport when we arrive in China?

A: Great Wall will provide your family with a travel guide/translator who will pick you up from the airport and take you to your hotel, to all of your adoption appointments and for sight seeing while you’re in China. You will always have your guide’s personal cell phone number as well so that you can get a hold of them anytime while you’re in China.

 

 

 

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Adoption Tax Credit

 What is the adoption tax credit?

The Adoption Tax Credit, which can be claimed for eligible adoption-related expenses, has helped thousands of American families offset the cost of adoption since the credit was established in 1997. It has made adoption a financially viable option for many parents who might not otherwise have been able to afford it, allowing them to provide children with loving, permanent families. With over 100,000 children in the U.S. foster care system currently eligible for adoption, and an ever increasing number of orphaned and abandoned children worldwide in institutions, the continuation of the Adoption Tax Credit is vital to providing love, safety, and permanency through adoption to as many children as possible.

For many families, the cost associated with adopting a child or sibling group can be very discouraging. Even for families with the best of intentions and the purest of hearts, a lack of finances can mean the difference between providing an orphan with a loving home and turning a reluctant cheek to the overwhelming need. The Adoption Tax Credit has done so much to bridge this gap, and for that we are forever grateful!

Why do we need your help to save it?

With tax reform up for discussion once more, the Adoption Tax Credit is at risk of being eliminated. We are asking both past and current adoptive families to share their voices to tell Congress about the importance of this tax credit and the difference that it has made in helping them bring their family together. By making adoption more affordable, this tax credit has literally changed the lives of countless orphans around the world, and this is simply not something that we can risk losing.

How you can help!

If your family has benefited from the Adoption Tax Credit, we need your help! Here are a couple of simple ways that you can share your voice to help this cause:

  • Send a Letter to Members of Congress

Use this link to send your thank you letter to Members of Congress to support the Adoption Tax Credit: https://secure2.convio.net/res/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=709

  • Tweet Your Support!

Tag your Member of congress and use the following hashtags: #SavetheATC #taxreform!

Example: For me and thousands of families, the adoption tax credit made adoption possible. Watch my story here [LINK] #SavetheATC #taxreform

  • Share a Facebook Post

Link to a family blog post or photo and tell your story! Again, you can use the hashtags #SavetheATC and #taxreform.

 

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An Update on “L”!

Eight months ago we shared a story about a family reuniting with their host kiddo to bring her home forever. It was a reunion that they had been anxiously awaiting from the moment they had to say their goodbyes at the end of the hosting program. Although the family was certainly sad to see their daughter, “L,” return to China after the hosting program, they knew that they would be seeing her again soon as they had already begun submitting their paperwork to adopt her.

Throughout the month that L spent in the United States with the hosting program, she was able to see life outside of her orphanage and experience the love of a family. These experiences ultimately helped to ease their transition transition upon returning home as a family of three. Now, eight months later, L is thriving in her new family! Read our blog below to learn more about L’s transition and the many firsts she’s experienced in the eight months that she’s been home.

Click here to read about L’s journey home!

October

L loves to drive by and point to the EIU castle.  She begged and pleaded to go there and finally got her chance during EIU’s Homecoming.  She got to meet Billy the Panther and go to her first parade.  We visited Tent City and she cheered on the Panthers at her first football game.

We had a special afternoon with Papa Swing and Grandma Barb at Aikman’s Wildlife Adventure in Arcola.  The highlight was the Wagon Tour where we got up close and personal with the animals and even got to feed them.  The zoo is going to seem boring after this special trip.

This was her first Halloween and she enjoyed carving her first pumpkin.  Mommy also visited her school for her classroom Halloween party.

November

By this time, we have gotten our rhythm and routine down.  L is loving going to school and making new friends.  We enjoyed a visit from special friends and L loved all the extra attention. It’s always so great to catch up with good friends!

We visited Santa Claus at the Festival of Trees and enjoyed face painting with Kinsley and Charlie.  We also had a great Thanksgiving with family and friends.

December

L started the month with the Trojet Dance Clinic.  She loves to cheer and dance so it was no surprise that she loved it.  Even now months later, she randomly starts doing dance moves from the routine she learned.

L had been asking to go on a train ride so we obliged by having lunch with Santa on the Polar Express in Monticello.  She asked Santa for a dress because what girl doesn’t want a dress?!  It was a snowy afternoon and really set the mood for the trip.  She was just excited because she got to eat chips in her sack lunch.
L was the star of the Broadway Christian Church Christmas Program.  She sang her heart out and was very enthusiastic about her performance.  She kept up with the hand motions and was also one of the loudest.  Unfortunately, she didn’t know most of the words even after weeks of practicing.  She could sing Jesus very clearly, but that was about it.  Everyone still seemed to enjoy watching it.
Santa Claus found our house for Christmas.  She was very excited about him going up and down our chimney.  He left L a new bicycle.  She was awfully concerned because her bike was too big and she needed a little bike like her best friend’s.  A great ending to our 2016 and fun to see how much she has changed in one year.

January

We started the year by taking L to her first movie at the theater.  She did really well.

Due to the unseasonably warm temperatures, we were able to visit the St. Louis Zoo in January.  She loved visiting all the animals and can’t wait to plan another visit.

L celebrated the 100th day of school and enjoyed dressing up as a “grandma” with all her classmates.

This was our first year celebrating the Chinese New Year.  The holiday fell on Saturday, January 28th.  This was the first day of the Chinese lunar calendar.  CNY 2017 was the year of the Rooster.  We celebrated by making decorations and re-decorating our Christmas Tree, enjoying traditional Chinese food from the Asian market, and reading a few books about the holiday.  We also went to a special event at the Urbana Free Library.
We ended the month with L’s 10th birthday party.  We enjoyed a small party with close family at home.  She enjoyed the special cake [Peppa Pig] that Grandma Barb made for her, unwrapping gifts, and having everyone sing to her.  This girl isn’t shy about being the center of attention.

February

L and Baba enjoyed their first daddy-daughter dance at Broadway Christian Church.  They were a beautiful couple and had a great evening. L’s favorite part was going out to eat for “china food” beforehand.

L loves all things dancing, cheerleading, and gymnastics.  So when we have events that she can participate in, we try to take full advantage.  She is so limber and flexible, we have no doubt that with practice, she will probably excel.  This month she did an EIU cheer clinic and did a beginner gymnastics class through the Recreation Department.

April

As the weather has warmed up, we have spent more and more time outside.  She loves to play bubbles and use sidewalk chalk.  She is working on riding her bicycle but after a couple of falls, she is understandably apprehensive.  She has gotten so much stronger!  We did a fun science experiment where we inflated a balloon by the reaction of vinegar and baking soda.  She has also learned how to play baseball with a wiffle ball and bat.  Her hand-eye coordination has improved so much she learned immediately and gets tons of hits.

We had special visitors came over to play.  She was excited about eating pizza, doing puzzles, playing Barbies, and playing Go Fish. We were so amazed at how far she has come in interacting with other kids, playing, and communicating.  It was an eye-opener for us.  Especially since it had been several months since she had seen them.

We celebrated our first Easter.  She talked about wearing her special dress to church for weeks.  She enjoyed coloring Easter eggs and seeing which colors could be combined to make new colors.  The Easter Bunny found our house and left her a basket with some special treats.  Since she does not like sweets at all, the eggs that she found contained coins and she was very excited about taking them to the bank.  We compromised and she added them to her bank at home.

She also got to attend a birthday party for one of her classmates.  It was held at the Flip Zone.  She was very uneasy around the trampoline, but by the end, she loved it.  She practiced walking on the balance beam and can’t wait to go back.  She has made some great friends in her class and it was fun to watch them play together.

Overall, it is amazing to see how far L has come.  She has lost three baby teeth and has new permanent teeth coming in.  She has gained some weight and is now up to 38 pounds.  She has grown in height, advanced a shoe size, and started to gain muscle strength and fill out.  Her hair is growing and thickening up.  She begs to have long hair.  She loves to put together puzzles, build with Legos, and play Barbies.  Food is still her love language.  She out eats us most days.  She is always open to trying new foods and is such a good eater.  She loves to snuggle with Mommy and Baba.  She is absolutely in love with her “sister” Bessie.  Bessie is our dog and if you remember when she visited last winter, she was absolutely terrified of the dog and screamed bloody murder.  If you have had a recent conversation with her, she probably asked you if you had a dog, what its name is, if it is big or little, and whether it is inside or outside.  If you asked her dog’s name, you likely got the response “B-E-S-S-I-E.”  She really likes to spell the words that she knows.  She is doing great in school and above average in her recognition/reading of sight words.  It makes my heart-swell to hear her read the leveled readers that she brings home.  This girl loves math.  Her vocabulary improves everyday and her spoken English continues to get stronger.  Her handwriting is beautiful and she concentrates so hard to make every letter or number “pretty.”  Astounding progress for a girl who had never been to school, had never used a pencil, put together a puzzle, and whose coloring consisted of scribbling.  She loves to sing along to the radio.  One of her favorites is Hillary Scott’s “Thy Will Be Done.”  She loves to belt out songs in the car and exclaims, “I know this song.”  Still working on the concept that songs are made up of words:)  This girls loves to sleep.  Every Friday night she says “sleep long time” aka let me sleep in.

I’m not sure how we got so lucky for God to choose us to be her parents, but our lives are blessed by her presence every minute of every day.   She fills our lives with joy with her smile, orneriness, and sassy personality.

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Post-Adoption Report Day!

POSTED MAY 10, 2017 BY NATIONAL COUNCIL FOR ADOPTION

The Office of Children’s Issues at the U.S. Department of State has declared May 15th Post-Adoption Report Day. It’s an opportunity to highlight the importance that parents who have adopted through intercountry adoption keep their promises and submit post-adoption reports as they committed to during the adoption process.

Here are 3 simple reasons NCFA believes Post-Adoption Reporting matters!

– You promised!
As a part of the adoption process, you were entrusted with the care of your child and promised to share about their future experiences. While it is easy to forget about extra paperwork in the important work of caring for your children, we think keeping your promise to report back on the wellbeing of your child is critically important.

– It’s a great opportunity for reflection.
Post-adoption reports are a good time to do some reflection and assessment. Consider your reporting dates an opportunity, not an obligation.  You can review and celebrate progress and milestones. Take a moment to consider what types of support might help your child (and you!) to grow and thrive. And consider what your goals are for your child and your family between now and the next reporting date. It’s also a terrific time to touch base with your adoption agency or other adoption professionals if you need any support. For some countries, you’re required to connect with your agency at this time anyway. It’s a natural and convenient time to touch base about any questions, concerns, or supports your family might find valuable.

– You’re helping to support future adoptions.
Post-adoption reports are one of the ways countries assess whether children are healthy, safe, and loved as a result of intercountry adoption. This information can be critical to deciding whether future children will have the option to join families through intercountry adoption or might otherwise languish in institutions or other impermanent situations.

So, what exactly is a post-adoption report? While the number and timing of reports required varies, generally the report’s goal is to discuss the child’s development and adjustment to a new family, home, and country. It’s important to pay special attention to the specific requirements in the country a child is adopted from. The type of information, how it should be assessed (through an agency or by parents themselves), and how it should be submitted can vary widely from country to country. Below, we’ve listed some basic information on several countries reporting requirements. If you have specific questions about what your reporting requirements are, we encourage you to reach out to your adoption service provider to learn more. Department of State also provides country specific information and can be contacted if you need more information.

Post-Adoption Report Requirements

We aren’t listing in detail all the country requirements, but wanted to give examples of some common countries of origin and their general guidelines, we’ve also linked through to more specific information at Department of State for each country. Of course, the best way to get information on what is required for your adoption is always to contact your adoption service provider and confirm what was required by the country at the time of your adoption and any other requirements the agency might have that you agreed to during the adoption process.

Bulgaria: 4 reports required. One every six months after adoption for first two years.

China: 6 reports required. Six months after adoption and at 1,2,3,4, and 5 years after adoption. First 3 reports must be prepared by the social workers who prepared the homestudy. Families may write last three reports themselves.

Haiti: 7 post-adoption reports are typically required. The first 4 must be completed with the adoption service provider at 6, 12, 18, and 24 months after adoption. The last 3 reports at moths 36, 48, and 60 may be submitted directly to IBESR by adoptive parents.

To find the requirements for the country you’re working with, you can search here or contact our adoption specialists today!

 

 

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My Heroes in Disguise – GWCA’s First Adoptee Shares Her Story

Shortly after GWCA first opened its doors in 1996, Samantha was one of three adoptees to come home with from China with GWCA’s very first travel group. Now, nearly twenty one years later, she’s studying in college and looking at all of the exciting options her future could hold. We asked Samantha to share her perspective on life as an adoptee, her connection to China, and the impact that her incredible family has had on helping her become the person she is today:

They say the best gifts are the ones money can’t buy, and I’m learning each day how much truth is in that statement. Appreciate the people who are genuine, kind, supportive, and who will love you no matter what. Twenty one years ago, I was granted God’s greatest miracle – a family.

Hello to anyone who is reading this! My name is Samantha. I turned twenty one years old this past February, and was born in Lishui, China. In 1996, Snow Wu established what you know as Great Wall China Adoption. Who knew one woman was about to change the lives of many orphaned children like mine? I was the first child to be adopted at ten months old from the Great Wall of China Adoption Agency along with two other girls, Meghan and Rachel, back in 1996. Life in the United States has truly been a blessing, and I owe it all to God and the people he’s put into my life.

I was adopted by a family that has been able to provide beyond a child’s basic needs. My parents, Scott and Angela, weren’t able to have children of their own. They prayed that one day they would have a family. God answered their prayers, and led them to adoption. Never in a million years did they think that adoption would be the route they would take. Of course they were scared, but there wasn’t anything more they wanted than to have a family. With a strong faith and the help of Snow Wu, their dreams finally came true. They flew across the world to find me. Four years later, they went back to China, and adopted my brother, Alexander.

Ever since I was little, my parents have always encouraged my brother and I to try new things and put ourselves out there; I don’t remember a time where we weren’t involved in some type of physical activities. My greatest accomplishment related to sports was when I decided to join competitive gymnastics at four years old. At eleven years old, I ranked twelfth in Texas for my division. I endured many long hours, days, weeks, months, and years of hard work to accomplish the success that I did at such a young age (4 ½ + hrs. a day).  I was not even in middle school at the time and learned to balance my academics, social life, and my extracurricular activities. After I ranked in the state I decided to leave competitive gymnastics and try other sports. I was able to play competitive volleyball, basketball, softball, pole-vault, tennis, track and field, and dance. I was honored to be named one the Silver Dancers in high school, whose team has ranked five consecutive years at the annual Nationals Competition. I’m so blessed for all of the people I’ve met along the way and the memories I’ve made so far. Through everything, my parents have made it a priority to be involved in me and my brother’s lives. Since day one, they have always been our biggest cheerleaders out there.

We were privileged to attend private school for the majority of our lives, where we grew in our spiritual faith and met people who would serve as a positive influence in our lives. Each year we are committed to going on a family trip. I’ve been extremely lucky to explore different cities, states, countries, and continents all around the world. I love travelling, hiking, going to concerts, shopping, interior design (DIY projects), hanging out with friends, blogging, and fitness. I’m currently in college where I am double majoring in Business Marketing and Public Relations, and have made the Dean’s List two years in a row. I plan on either becoming a wedding planner who focuses on destination weddings or being heavily involved in corporate event planning/sports entertainment.

We live in America, where dreams come true. If you’re scared of adoption, don’t be. I wouldn’t be the person who I am today, if it weren’t for the greatness of God, my family, and Great Wall China Adoption. Family doesn’t necessarily mean you’re related by blood. The people who will love you on your best days and even more on your worst days are considered family to me. My parents have hearts of gold, and will forever be my heroes. I know that whatever obstacles life throws my way that my parents will be there to support my brother and I, and they’ll have our backs like no one else. I’ll forever be grateful for my parents pushing us to be the best we can be, and teaching us to live a Christ like life every day. They truly inspire me like no one else I have ever met, and have taught me to stay true to who I am no matter what. I’m a strong believer that even though life can seem scary and unpredictable, everything happens for a reason. God has a journey for each and every one of us, so trust that he will guide you to the path you’re meant to be on. For my parents, their paths sent them across the globe, to find what they were yearning for, which was a family.

People ask me all of the time if I would want to meet my biological parents, and my response is always the same. The people who’ve raised me since I was ten months old are my parents, they’re all I’ve ever known, and having them in my life is all I really need. I wouldn’t trade them for the world, and will forever appreciate everything they’ve done for our family. Thank you to God, Snow Wu, my parents, mentors, and my lifelong friendships I’ve established in America. I hope someday I can leave an imprint on somebody else’s life like they have all made on mine.

If you’re interested in learning how you can begin your journey with GWCA’s China adoption program, contact our matching specialists or visit our Waiting Child photo listing today!

Resources

– Visit the Waiting Child Photo Listing
– Contact a China Matching Specialist
– Learn more about China adoption

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The Day I Met You: Caseworkers Watch Adoption Journeys Come Full Circle

Meeting the Children of GWCA and CAN

When working with children that need our advocacy, meeting them in person is truly one of the most life-changing experiences. From the moment that you hold them in your arms, your heart breaks for them and you know you have to do everything in your power to help them find the love of a family. Every day GWCA and CAN’s matching specialists advocate for kids, many of whom they have never met before. While it is always incredible to help a child find their family, nothing can compare to the moment when you see the same child you held in your arms in an orphanage finally uniting with their Forever Family.

We asked our matching specialist, Hilary, Meredith, and Heidi to reflect on a few of the incredible moments that they experienced while watching the adoptions of children they met come full circle.

GWCA and CAN are currently advocating for many Waiting Children who are in need of loving families. If you’re interested in learning more about these incredible kids or finding out how your family can be matched, visit our Waiting Child photo listings or contact our matching specialists today!

Visit GWCA’s Waiting Child Photo Listing!

From Haiti to Home

There are not many moments in your life where you truly feel the ground move beneath you. And, there are not many moments in your life where you can say that you directly impacted someone’s life and changed it for the better. As a matching specialist that is a feeling I often get to experience and it is nothing short of incredible. However, there are also moments when you get to meet a child face to face in their country and later see that same child come home with their forever family, and that feeling…well that is a feeling like no other. It is honestly indescribable.

I recently got to experience this feeling when one of my kiddos from Haiti came home. I met little E about a year ago and she was the caretaker of her creche. She loved to give everyone hugs and check on her crying friends. After spending a short amount of time at the creche little E quickly became one of my buddies. She would grab my hand and drag me from room to room and even jumped of my back for a photo op. This sweet little girl was full of personality and at the time was soft matched with one of my families. I could not wait to get back to Texas and call her mom to tell her exactly what her precious girl was like! Time passed, documents were approved, and I finally got to make the call that we as matching specialists love to do, “This is it. This is the call. You can go pick up your girl!” And, just like that, little E finally came home.

Once they were settled her mom called me to update me on how they were doing and that phone call went something like this, “Can you say hi Hilary?”, “Hi Hilary” in the tinniest and cutest little voice. It was little E on the other end of the phone. The sweet girl I met so long ago and now in her home with her forever family. I LOST IT.

International adoption is not easy. It is not easy for anyone involved in the process whether you are working on the adoption or adopting. But, these moments are what keep me going. These are the reminders of why I do what I do.

Meeting Lottie

Last summer, I had the amazing opportunity to fly to Chicago to meet the summer host kiddos that were flying in from Beijing. I will never forget the feeling of waiting at the gate with all of the families eager to meet the children they would be hosting for the next four weeks. For the kiddos that were going to be advocated for, I had the amazing chance to spend time with the kiddos at the airport to learn more about their sweet and incredible spirits. One little girl in particular, Lottie, captured my heart completely while we were waiting for her connecting flight. Even after a long and exhausting day of travel for the kiddos and the chaperone, she brought such joy and mischievousness to our little group. During the hosting session Lottie’s host family and I worked closely to find her a forever family, and now I am overjoyed to say that her family will be traveling to bring her home soon! I can’t wait to see photos of Lottie again, this time with a family to call her own. 

An Indescribable Feeling

What does it feel like to meet a child in China who doesn’t think they’ll ever have a mom or a dad, brothers or sisters, a home, a family to call their own?  What does it feel like to give them hope that one day you might help them find what they’ve always dreamed of?  What does it feel like to talk to a family who wants that child they have seen on a photo listing, to help them start the adoption process, to see their family work for months and months and finally get to go pick them up?

I got to follow their journey, I got to see pictures of their Gotcha’ Day, and even better, I received a phone call from the family telling me that the child I had met one year before was on the other end of the line asking to speak with me.

What does that feel like you ask?  It is indescribable!  There are no words to describe that feeling.  It takes your breath away.  It punches you in the gut, but in the best way possible.  You want to run and jump and laugh and scream with joy, but you also want to fall to the ground and cry because of how big, how huge that moment is.  How can you describe being the catalyst for an orphaned child’s life being changed forever?  How can you describe someone telling you that the photo or video you took in China is what made them fall in love with a child?  The sheer weight of that knowledge is almost too much to bare! And yet it’s one of the most amazing feelings a person could ever experience!

A moment of silence.  Then you hear the child pick up the phone.  And then, “Hello Heidi?  It is…”  Breathless.  Speechless.  Silent tears stream down my face. There are no words to describe this moment.  And there never will be.

*Note: For privacy purposes, the kids shown in the image above are not the kids featured in the post.

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Christina Has a $2,000 Grant!

Meet Christina, GWCA’s Sponsored Star for May!

Christina is an awesome little girl from China that is 7 and a half years old! Christina has cerebral palsy that appears to be pretty mild and only seems to affect her lower limbs. Christina can walk just fine by herself and can play just like any other child. She has good fine motor skills and her upper body and limbs work normally.

Christina’s cognitive abilities are at the same level as the other children in the orphanage. Her language is delayed and she can only speaks in short sentences. Christina does understand what other people are saying to her and she can follow directions when they are given by her caretakers.

Christina is very sympathetic to other children and when they are upset she will go to comfort them and try to help them calm down. Christina does get along well with other children and likes to play games with them. Christina is very outgoing with people she is familiar with, but she gets quite shy around strangers.

You can contact the China Home Finding Team at Great Wall if you would like to learn more about adopting sweet Christina. We hope we are able to find Christina her Forever Family soon!

As our Sponsored Star, Christina has a $2,000 grant available towards her adoption fees! If you are interested in seeing Christina’s file or learning how you can be matched with her, visit our China Waiting Child Photo Listing or contact our China adoption specialists today!

What is a Sponsored Star?

On the 1st of each month, Great Wall China Adoption will feature one of the kiddos from our Orphanage Partnerships as our monthly “Sponsored Star!” As our Sponsored Star, that child will be provided a $2,000 grant towards their adoption fees! Each of the kiddos selected will be a Special Focus child,  meaning they have not found their Forever Family yet due to their age, or the degree of their needs. Together, we can find loving homes for these amazing kids!

We encourage any families interested in learning more about our Sponsored Star of the Month to visit our China Waiting Child Photo Listing, or contact our China Matching Specialists to learn how you can be matched today! Check back on the first of each month to meet the newest featured child!

Watch Christina’s video:

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Forever Family Found

Hooray! This #ForeverFamilyFriday we’re DELIGHTED to announce that a family has begun submitting their paperwork to bring this sweet girl home forever!

GWCA received this beautiful little girl’s file from one of our Orphanage Partnerships and were able to find a family that was ready to move forward with her right away. We are so happy that she is now one step closer to her Forever Family, and we are eager to continue following her journey home. Congratulations to her and her new family from all of us at GWCA and CAN!

China Waiting Child Adoption

Our China adoption program allows families to be matched with Special Focus children at any point in the process, making the adoption journey as a whole relatively quick! We receive new children’s files each week, both from our orphanage partnerships and from the Shared List, which provides our families with the opportunity to review multiple files until they find a child that they feel would be a good fit. Contact our China matching specialists or visit our photo listing to learn more about the kids that we’re currently advocating for!

Resources:

– Contact GWCA’s Adoption Specialists
– Learn more about GWCA’s Orphanage Partnerships
– Visit GWCA’s Waiting Child Photo Listing
– Learn more about adopting from China

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Adoption Tax Credit

For many families, the cost associated with adopting a child or sibling group can be very discouraging. Even for families with the best of intentions and the purest of hearts, a lack of finances can mean the difference between providing a orphan with a loving home and turning a reluctant cheek to the overwhelming need. The Adoption Tax Credit has done so much to bridge this gap, and for that we are forever grateful!

With Tax Day quickly approaching and the issue of tax reform up for discussion, the Adoption Tax Credit Working Group has launched a “Thank You” campaign to remind members of Congress about the importance of the Adoption Tax Credit and the change it has brought to countless families. Click the link below to add your voice to their campaign to help get their message across!

“Did the Adoption Tax Credit help you build your family? Use our form to send a thank you letter to your Members of Congress for supporting the ATC!: https://secure2.convio.net/res/site/Advocacy…

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Matching – We’re Here to Help!

Did you know? In China’s Waiting Child adoption program, families can be matched with a child at any point in the process. That means you can start submitting your paperwork for a specific child as soon as you’re ready to begin your journey!

Does this mean that you should wait to get started until you’ve found your child? Not necessarily! While there are many children listed on agency’s photo listings and advocacy sites, the reality is that we receive children’s files in a variety of ways, and many children will be matched prior to being listed publicly!

Whether your family is waiting to be matched with an LID child once your dossier is logged in or you’re looking for a specific age range or need, speaking with an adoption specialist and getting started may be the quickest way to find your child.

Once you’ve started your adoption journey and discussed what you’re open to with a China adoption specialist, we’ll keep you in mind every time we receive new files from an Orphanage Partnership or when requesting files from China’s Shared List. Since our Orphanage Partnerships send us files that they’ve just finished preparing, you may receive a file that has never been reviewed by a family before. That’s how the beautiful girl pictured in this post found her family!

Are you ready to speak to an adoption specialist about finding your child? Contact GWCA today!

Resources

– Speak to a China Adoption Specialist
– Visit the Waiting Child Photo Listing
– Learn more about the China adoption process!

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