China special need and special focus adoptions
There are many wonderful children waiting for forever families within China's special need and special focus adoption programs. Children from 9 months to 14 years of age are available for adoption, both male and female, with varying special needs. These two programs, although similar due to expedition of the adoption process, have some differences which are noted below.
SPECIAL NEEDS ADOPTION:
Children who are considered special needs are children with minor correctable medical conditions. These children often have cleft lip and palate, club foot/feet, minor heart conditions, etc. Children in this program are often under the age of 8 and have only been listed for adoption a very short time.
In order for a family to apply for a SN child, you must have a completed dossier logged in with the CCCWA. Once your dossier is logged in, AAI estimates 2-8 months to a referral for your consideration. At that time your family will receive medical history and child background as well as photos of the child. Your family has 72 hours to make a decision to proceed or decline the referral. If you decide to proceed your family will complete a Letter of Intent. This letter is a statement from your family explaining your decision to adopt this particular child and the care and resources your family can provide. AAI will provide guidelines on preparing this letter. If your family decides the referral is not the best match you may decline the referral prior to completing a Letter of Intent with no negative impact to your adoption. Your family would continue to wait for another referral.
SPECIAL FOCUS ADOPTION:
Children who are part of the special focus program are children who have been listed for adoption for over two months, have a medical condition that the CCCWA considers more serious, or children considered harder to place. Some of the children are healthy and their age is considered their special need. AAI has had great success in placement of SF children.
Families and single woman may apply for a special focus child prior to a dossier being logged in with the CCCWA. Once you are matched with a child and pre-approval is obtained, your family has six months to complete the paperwork to submit to the CCCWA to proceed with the adoption.
There are three unique adoption options for the special focus program:
- A family may proceed with an adoption of a special focus child while maintaining your log in date for an adoption in the regular process. The CCCWA will use a photo copy of your dossier for the special focus adoption and provide you with a new log in date. Families will need to obtain USCIS approval for a special focus child in order to complete the adoption. A new homestudy would need to be completed before you could accept a referral in the regular process noting the placement and adjustment of the special focus child in your home.
- If approved by your social worker, a family may adopt two children at the same time. One of these children must be a special focus child. Your homestudy and USCIS approval must approve you for the adoption of two children. AAI has experience with adoptions of two children and it can be a wonderful opportunity for families and provide a unique bond for the children.
- CCCWA now allows families to reuse a previous dossier for the adoption of a special focus child. If a letter of intent is submitted within 12 months of the time your first adoption was registered in China the dossier may be reused. A new homestudy, USCIS approval, and a photo copy of the dossier would be required for the special focus adoption.