Monday, May 4, 2015

An Orphan Status Verification that Saved Twins from Separating

I was in Ethiopia for my quarterly quality check visit when our local EthioStork employee called me. She was in Oromiya region, conducting Orphan Status Verifications on a number of children who were being adopted through an agency that has made it a requirement for a verification by EthioStork to be done before an adoption is finalized. 

"That two babies, A and M are actually twins" my employee said. I could hear the emotions in her being excitement. And I was feeling the same thing.  That what we do really matters, that this was a matter of life and death. A matter of siblings, minutes apart in birth order, being saved from being miles and hours apart, placed in different homes with different families.  A and M were referred to families in separate states. The agency had no idea they were twins as they had separate paperwork and the orphanage representative had told them they were brought by the police separately.   While there was relief this was discovered, much was left for the agency to resolve. They had to rush to get both cases out of court so they don't get approved separately and also make the hard decision of which family gets to take the twins.  It was heart breaking for one family, and double the joy for another.  But most importantly, twins were reunited.   I have come across such situations before, just not with good endings.  In the other situations (unfortunately I knew about them long after the adoptions were finalized and there wasn't much I could do). 

To be continued Monday May 11. Come back then and read the rest. 


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  2. As the heartbroken parent in this story we thank you for ensuring that A and M will always be together. What made it even harder is that unlike the story states we live miles not states away from the other family. I don't know if I will ever recover from losing our sweet one but knowing they are together is the comfort I cling to. Thank you Ethiostork for your commitment to honest integrity and child centered adoptions

    1. We do apologize for this error re the distance, as well as for your great loss. What a difficult position you were in. We admire your attitude of putting the children's need of being together first and hope you were able to provide a loving home for another child. We regret that all parties could not have a positive outcome in this situation.

  3. Doug and Jill, I'm sorry for your pain in this. Ethiostork, thank you for posting this story. Can you give us examples of time when the investigation resulted in a child going to a family member who wanted to care for the child and hadn't fully been informed about the realities of the int'l adoption process? I think you sharing these types of stories would give us confidence in your 3rd party services. I realize these are sensitive stories, but perhaps families involved would give permission in order to educate others about the realities of what can happen and why deeper investigation is necessary.

  4. We can Mary. You make a good point. We do have plans for some future stories with other experiences from families. It does involve getting permission, etc. to share details, but we will work on this and hopefully post something soon.