There are some very serious changes being proposed right now for adoptions in Ethiopia. For those of you unfamiliar with what is going on: The summary is that there is a government agency (MOWA- Ministry of Women's Affairs) in Ethiopia that must write a recommendation letter regarding every adoption before a judge can hear the case and adoptive parents can be granted custody of their new child. This agency typically writes about 40 of these letters everyday. Well, they are proposing that beginning on March 10th, they will only write 5 letters per day (a 90% reduction). This is unfathomable in a country where there are 5 MILLION orphans.
The motives behind this are wonderful: there is rising concern that child trafficking and other illegal practices are occurring, and they want to allow enough time to do more thorough investigations of all cases. However, this also would mean that thousands upon thousands of children who are in orphanages right now would remain there for much longer periods of time. And when the orphanages are full, there would be no room for more children. Our government is in talks with them to try to get them additional training and staff, if the problem truly is a lack of time/staff to investigate. We have also been told that things like this are stated sometimes but never come to fruition, so that may happen as well. They said they would begin this new policy on March 10th, so we should begin to see some answers throughout the week. Many adoption agencies, as well as the US State Department, are in talks with them this week as well, trying to find a compromise.
So right now, we wait. We pray. If you are the praying kind, we would ask that you pray as well. Pray for the government agency to try to find a solution that won't affect the long-term future of these children. Pray that court cases are allowed to continue at a reasonable rate. And please, pray for the children there, that they feel our love here and know that we are waiting for them, no matter how long it takes. We plead with you to join us in acting on behalf of those who do not have a voice. Our prayers and hands are called to ACT for these children desperately needing a home.
God is not surprised by this decision by the Ethiopian government. God is always and forever in control. He loves these children more than we do. He has created them to be in a loving home. Simultaneously, we know that we are His representatives to speak on their behalf and advocate for them. Please join us in acting for these children. PLEASE take the time to sign the petition below and help reverse this decision!!
JCICS Call to Action
March 8, 2011
Joint Council: Emergency Campaign for Ethiopian Children
What You Can Do:
1) Sign the petition here to the Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Meles Zenawi and pass it on! It only takes a minute!!
2) Have you adopted from Ethiopia? Please send us up to 3 photos and 50 words or less with what you would like the Ministry to know about your child – we’ll compile the information and send a book to the Ministry of Woman’s Affairs. Send your photos and stories to firstname.lastname@example.org bySunday, March 12, 2011 to be included. Please note that sending photos and stories gives Joint Council unrestricted right to use the information you provide.
3) Share…Please send this Call to Action to family members, other adoptive parents, and everyone you know! Post, forward and share your adoption stories via Facebook, Twitter, and blogs.