The waiting child or special need, program was started by China Center of Adoption Affairs (CCAA) in April, 2002. Adoption agencies have to be approved to participate in this program and it operates differently than the regular adoption processing. CCAA assigns a small amount of children (it varies by agency – we usually receive 5 – 6 children) to the approved agencies. The children (boys and girls) can range in age from 6 months old and older. The “special need” of each child will vary, cleft palate, hepatitis B positive and congenital heart defect are the most common, but there may also be vision impaired children and children born with a deformity. The agency has three months to try to find a loving, adoptive family for the children. At the end of that time we are required to send the unmatched children’s referrals back to CCAA, hopefully to be reassigned soon to another agency.
Document processing is a little different than the process for regular adoptions from China. Once a family makes a commitment to a “waiting” child, they complete a “Letter of Intent to Adopt a Special Needs Child”. This letter includes information about their family, and a doctor’s evaluation of possible treatment, based on the medical information that was provided. CCAA is looking for married couples, or singles with a slightly higher than average income with no more that 4 children in the home.

After CCAA receives the Letter of Intent, (LOI), a pre-approval “Notice” for the family is issued. Then the dossier is processed and travel permission is given. Parents can travel to China and bring their child home. Kathy Wang, our employee in China, escorts all of our families during the China adoption process.

The CCAA process should only take about six months or less. US CIS approval and completion of your dossier will add on another few months. Time frames for the entirety of the adoption may vary.

To view pictures of the children that are currently available please contact Vicki Paulson for the password to access the web site. We have posted the children’s pictures and limited information. More information is available by contacting Heritage.

Listed below are answers to the most frequently asked questions concerning our Special Needs Adoption Program in China.

1. How much time does it take? The time will vary, depending on if you have started the USCIS (Citizenship and Immigration Services, formally known as the INS) approval and/or your China dossier. If your Heritage dossier is in China at the time you decide to accept an referral, the time frame is approximately 4 – 6 months to travel. If you need to start the paperwork process and to receive your USCIS approval, the time frame will be approximately 6–9 months to travel. 2. What are the ages of the children available for adoption? From six months to about ten years old. The children are boys and girls and are designated as legal orphans, living in orphanages.

3. What is the range of “special needs” of these children? The children have a variety of medical conditions. Some have a deformity, which may not be correctable or correctable only when they have finished growing. Other children have been referred with a cleft lip and pallet, congenital heart disease, Hepatitis B, or blindness. Most of the children have correctable medical conditions.

4. Who qualifies to adopt from China? In general, persons with a favorable home study, slightly higher income, married or single, 30 – 50 years. Single men must be over 40 years and may only adopt male children. There must be no more than 4 children currently in a family.

5. Do I have to apply with Heritage before I can receive information on the Waiting Children? No, we are happy to talk with you. A short paragraph about each child is on our Waiting Child website. You can always contact Vicki Paulson for more information.

6. Can I place a child on a temporary hold? To be eligible to place a child on a temporary hold a family must first submit the Heritage Application or a previous or current home study report. Once agency approval is given, a family will be able to place a child on a 7 day hold. This option is available to give families time to consult their local physician or specialist for a medical opinion of required treatment.

7. Can we submit the application to be held on file at Heritage in case at a later date we want to place a child on hold? Yes, we will hold a application for six months, at which time a new, updated application will need to be submitted.

8. How do we access the application? On the left side menu above, click on “FORMS”. Then open the International Programs Adoption Application form that will work the best on your computer. Print only the first four pages of the application.

9. When I decide to adopt the child, what is my first step? Contact Vicki Paulson and let her know of your intent to adopt. Complete the Heritage Application form, if not already submitted, and request the Waiting Child packet, which will include the Letter of Intent to Adopt a Special Needs Child (LOI). The LOI is sent to China Center of Adoption Affairs for the adoption process to begin in China.
10. What information is available about the child? You can view a photo – probably several, and have access to a developmental and health report. You will also know where she/he is located.

11. What is the cost of this program?

Please contact Heritage for the fee schedule and explanation. [email protected]

12. Is travel involved? Yes At least one parent must travel to China for approximately 10 – 14 days to claim their child, be processed through the adoption with the provincial government and to obtain a U. S. visa to bring the child into the U. S.

13. Do we go alone to China?Yes, unless there is another family adopting a special need child from the same orphanage. Our full time, bilingual employee in China, Kathy Wang, will escort you during your adoption process. All arrangements for in-country hotels, travel, and sightseeing are done for you.

14. What does Heritage do for us? We perform the following services:

Help with the Letter of Intent, and the Information about the Adoption Parents forms;
For Oregon and Washington residents, we prepare the home study. For nonresidents we review and work with your home study agency in the preparation and composition of your home study;
Prepare & obtain Secretary of State Authentication of you dossier (file);
Prepare & obtain Chinese government legalization of dossier (file);
Help you with the process of getting the visa approval for your child from United States I.N.S.;
Refer your documents for translation by Kathy Wang;
Refer your dossier to the Chinese Center of Adoption Affairs (CCAA);
Help you to prepare for a transcultural adoption;
Coordinate your adoption journey to China;
Arrange for your bilingual guide and interpreter while in China
Provide educational materials in preparation for international adoption;
Provide individual adoption counseling;
Provide encouragement and support while you are going through this exciting experience;
Notify you of any changes or new procedures in adoption protocol in either the U. S. government. or the Chinese government as we are notified;
Encourage continued support after your adoption through Heritage “family” gatherings and activities.
bullet Provide professional adoption-related counseling by our agency counselor / educator.

15. Is it possible to talk with families who adopted a special needs child from China through Heritage? Yes. We’re happy to supply names and phone numbers or email addresses of Heritage families who have volunteered to talk about their experience in adoption from China with seriously interested persons.

16. We want more information. What do we do? E-mail Vicki at [email protected] or call her at (503) 233-1099. If you live in the area, we would enjoy meeting you, please feel free to request a private, no-obligation interview.

To view pictures of the children that are currently available please contact Vicki Paulson for the password to access the web site. We have posted the children’s pictures and limited information. More information is available by contacting Heritage.

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