Recent happenings throughout the Ethiopian government, concerning international adoption have our hearts breaking. We are requesting that you pray with us. Please pray for God to sway hearts of the Ethiopian government officials. Pray that positive adoption PR will flood Ethiopia. Pray God's will be done for these children without families and consequently, without hope.
This news article came from AllAfrica just one day after Christmas:
"The House of Peoples' Representatives and the Ministry of Women, Children and Youth urged stakeholders and the public to undertake integrated work to totally stop adoption of Ethiopian children by foreign families.
In a press conference, House Speaker Abadula Gemeda and the Minister Zenebu Tadesse told journalists that stakeholders should work closely to end foreign adoption.
Abadula urged the importance to give priority to use local means to raise orphaned children rather than giving them away to foreign families.
He suggested the importance to establish and support local NGOs which raise orphaned children with the close collaboration of the public.
He urged stakeholders and the public to support these initiatives and protect children from any kind of abuse.
The Minister Zenebu on her part said the government is working hard to end foreign adoption and facilitate situations to raise the children within their community.
Over 9,000 children were adopted by foreign families during the previous years, in a yearly basis, she said.
Through various activities carried out over the past years, number of children adopted by foreign families reduced to less than 1,000 in 2005EC.
She attributed the success to implementation of various laws and increasing knowledge of the public."
We were informed through EthioStork, an agency founded by Duni Zenaye, a native Ethiopian, that walks families through the adoption process and beyond, providing information about the Ethiopian culture, the adoption process as a whole, and assist families through the many challenges of trans-racial adoptions, of some follow-up information concerning a meeting held with parliament.
Duni writes "I just spoke to folks back home. They have informed me that the meeting of the adoption network with parliament didn't go well. The minister of federal MOWCYA, Minister Zenebu had declared she wants to shut down adoption in the coming weeks. It was very political, "we have controlled the spread of AIDS, we have dared to build a dam at the Nile, surly we can put a stop to adoption as well". The speaker of Parliament agreed with her. The meeting was adjourned with the plan to create a committee that will present a "plan of action to end adoption" not poverty or orphaning, mind you, within 10 days. If this gets accepted by parliament then next will be getting the prime minister to sign it. Let's hope that doesn't happen."
We currently wait ten of the longest days since starting our adoption journey. We hope to hear positive news soon. Positive news would consist of adoption reform, new standards, new laws that do not include the shut off of international adoption. Protection of these precious children from child trafficking, abuse cases such as those like Hana Williams and more and financial corruption on the part of orphanages and even government, is so vitally important to the future of all orphans. Adoption can become a very politically and even culturally charged subject. The first priority that we share with many adoptive families INTACT. The primary family unit is of the highest importance. When that is no longer an option, children being kept in their own culture, raised by members of their native land would be preferred. In many cases this is not a viable option either. Many areas with concentrated numbers of orphans are many times areas that are extremely poverty stricken. Here is where opinions begin to differ. These children can be kept in their cultural land and be raised by various members of local villages or be raised in orphanages. We feel this is not ideal. The children never form attachments to parents that are their OWN. They do not develop trust and intimate relationships with adult figures. And so, we find ourselves at the mercy of the government, parliament, adoption advocates, local orphanage personnel, and the Prime Minister to make the right decision.
We have faith in the fact that our great God, Creator of all, knew this was coming. He knows the outcome as well. Please pray that He will intervene on behalf of the children of Ethiopia and those waiting to provide families to these little ones.