The Republic of Kazakhstan is situated between Russia and China, giving it a rich culture and history. Because of its location in Central Asia, its multicultural population of nearly 15 million is composed mainly of people of Kazakh descent (a mix of Turkic and Mongol nomadic tribes, giving natives a Eurasian look) and Caucasians. There are nearly 80,000 orphans in Kazakhstan, many of which are true orphans or have parents who were not able to care for them. The orphanages are in most major cities as well as their outlying regions. Both Eurasian and Caucasian children are available for adoption. Kazakh orphanages generally house anywhere from 30–70 children with approximately 5–8 children per caregiver. Sibling adoptions are also available. Children 12 months to 15 years are available. Most children available and waiting are over the age of 3 years. Families desiring to adopt children from 12 to 36 months must first be approved and prepared to wait an extended amount of time as these children remain on a domestic database before being released for international adoption. Sibling groups are available, but families should be prepared to have a minimum age range of 6 years for siblings. Unrelated child requests are not permitted. Boys are more readily available for adoption than girls. The care in the orphanages in Kazakhstan is said to be the best orphanage care. Some of these infants are in a hospital, from the time they are born until they are 3-4 months of age then moved to the orphanage.PROCESS
The Central Adoption Authority in Kazakhstan is the Ministry of Education and Sciences (MOES). The adoption process usually requires families to make two trips (or three trips, with the second trip split) to complete the adoption. The process is begun by collecting documents to compose the dossier (or set of paperwork), including a home study completed by a social worker. The document gathering process takes an average of 3–6 months to complete. Once the documents have been collected, they are translated and submitted to the appropriate Kazakhstan adoption authorities. The documents are registered and then sent directly to our experienced staff, who will submit the paperwork to a specific region, based on several factors, such as child request, average wait time, and availability of children. After the referral, a visa invitation is sent to notify a family that they have been approved to travel to Kazakhstan to adopt a child. America World assists them in the details of their travel planning and they will generally have 2-3 weeks to prepare.
The first trip to Kazakhstan is approximately 4-5 weeks. Upon arrival, families will be taken to the region in which they have been registered. They will then have the opportunity to visit a baby or child house and meet with a child(ren) who matches their request. Once a family has officially accepted a child, they begin the visitation process. The government requires that families spend 30 days visiting or "bonding" with their child before applying for a court date. Once this time has expired, a court date will be held no less than one month later. Families are then allowed to travel home during this wait period and return for a second trip that involves the court appointment. After the court appointment a mandatory 14 day appeal period begins. One or both parents again have the option to return home during this period. Some regions will waive the wait period, and an additional 9 days to process the paperwork for immigration would be required. It is only necessary for one parent to return for trip two, which consists of picking up their child from the orphanage and completing the necessary requirements for US immigration. This trip lasts approximately 5–7 days. Families who desire to stay in-country will be in Kazakhstan for a minimum of 45 days. Families will then return to the US with their new son or daughter!