First, instead of starting our own initiatives, AFFEO supports domestic partners by providing assistance, advice, and accountability. This benefits our mission in two ways:
1. If the initiatives are pre-existing, they are also already in the hearts of the national leaders who understand their countries customs, norms, needs, and viable solutions for the respective nations.
2. The endeavors will be more sustainable and continue even if we are no longer involved financially.
Our Partnership In India: Catalysts for Social Action
CSA is a Non-Governmental Organization that exclusively concentrates on adoption and orphan care standards in India and has worked to lead the scene since 2002. They are based in Mumbai, India, but also have satellite offices in the state of Maharashtra, Goa, Madhya Pradesh and Odisha (Orissa). They are a well-respected organization and they have an outstanding relationship with India’s Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA), which has allowed and encouraged them to bridge the gaps in the frame and structure of India’s local adoption system.
As mentioned in my last article, there were three main reasons for why only a fraction of children were adoptable. Let’s talk about how AFFEO and CSA work together to help.
Failing Systems and Infrastructure
As discussed in my last article, CARA faced lack of resources and infrastructure to check in with prospective parents on the possibility of matching with a child that did not meet their exact and original expectations when they first applied for adoption. Because of this, CSA staff volunteered to meet that need and aided by calling those potential parents. As you may have guessed, those parents were more than willing!
However, CARA has recently implemented an automated system that addresses some of these problems!
Instead of letting their method become redundant or obsolete, CSA shifted their strategy to provide a hotline for adoption questions. In this way, we still contribute to an incomplete infrastructure and system.
Lack of Financing for Background Checks
While CSA’s main objective is increasing adoption numbers, they additionally provide assistance to Indian orphanages for this purpose. Their experience has revealed the impossibility of their main objective if children’s home are unequipped, unlicensed, and improperly trained on registering children for adoption and caring for them until that time. At this time, they support 46 childcare institutions and adoption agencies that cover more than 2200 children. As a direct result of their efforts, over 1215 adoptions have occurred.
Complex Adoption Law(s) and Social Norms
And finally, aside from the adoption law (the Adoption Regulations of 2017 based on the Juvenile Justice (JJ) Act of 2015 and Juvenile Justice (JJ) Rules of 2016) and the religious laws that are still being used with practices that are not regulated consistently, there are the social norms. There is a deep stigma surrounding adoption in general in India and CSA helps to alleviate the pressure and negative connotations involved with that stigma. For example, CSA has published a book of testimonies from adoptive parents and it is now available for those who are interested in adoption. This has been a huge resource for families who feel alone in the process.
Further Contributions in Our Partnership
Maybe you’ve had the opportunity to read about Radha?
In short, Radha was abandoned in an orphanage when she was very young because she has sickle cell anemia, a blood disorder that can cause pain, fatigue, and infections. This genetic condition, also known as sickle cell disease, classified her as a child with special needs and would likely delay or prevent her from ever becoming adopted. CSA’s involvement and efforts helped Radha to be placed on the adoption registry, and in just a FEW months, a wonderful couple with two biological children fell in love with her! She is now with her family at home, where her siblings teach her to speak both Hindi and English. The family loves to go sailing and travel together, and they bond more and more every day.
She’s just one of millions of children in India who have experienced the pain and instability of wondering if someone will want and cherish them, regardless of health, skin color, religion, and cultural norms.
We KNOW that there is a family out there for each one of these children. Our partnership with CSA allows us to achieve the goal of finding those forever families for them, and we help CSA by providing the funding, resources, and backup support by bringing in trainers who are experts in trauma-informed care for children, and giving them opportunities to network with more orphan care professionals internationally.
 215 adoptions completely because of their efforts and over 1000 with their assistance.
About the author: Hi there! My name is Rachel. I grew up with the military, and then married military, and I have moved 22 times and counting in my life. I feel that moving so much has given me the gift of getting to see and experience different cultures and cuisines, and I wouldn’t change it for anything. I consider myself to be a family-focused extrovert who loves tea, art, food, anthropology, and helping people around the world.
My goal in writing these blogs is to bring deeper insight into what we do at A Family For Every Orphan and to give more detail into how we help these children and their unique circumstances.