Ukraine is a beautiful country located on the western border of Russia. It gained independence following the collapse of the Soviet Union, and achieved statehood in 1991. Since that time, economic decline has contributed to an increased number of orphans throughout the country. Of the estimated 60,000 to 100,000 orphans in Ukraine, 68% are estimated to be social orphans.
Adoption from Ukraine is unique in that parents are not matched with a specific child, but have the ability to select their child from a few choices once they arrive in the country. The process itself is divided into 3 phases, and takes approximately 15 months to complete. You begin your adoption process by compiling a collection of documents referred to as your Dossier. These documents must go through a careful process of verification and certification within your state so that they can be used as the legal framework for your adoption. When you have assembled and Apostille certified your dossier, it is sent to our office where we review it for accuracy. From there, America World sends the dossier on to Ukraine for translation. Once your documents have been translated, they are submitted to the Ukrainian Ministry of Social Policy (MSP) in Kiev, Ukraine. When your Dossier is submitted to the MSP, it is reviewed and processed by one of their lawyers. According to Ukraine’s regulations, the review process should take twenty business days.
After the Ministry of Social Policy processes and approves your Dossier, families are extended an invitation to travel to Ukraine for an appointment at the MSP on a specific date. There is no referral at this time, nor are there any pre-travel photos or videos of children available to prospective parents. At this point in the process, permission has been granted for the prospective family to come to the MSP to choose a child from among the children presented to the family. At this time, families are shown between 2-4 referrals from which to choose. America World assists with the details of your travel planning, and families customarily have between 4-8 weeks to prepare for their visit.
When you arrive at the Ministry of Social Policy, you will have the opportunity to sit with one of their staff psychologists and review profiles of Ukrainian children available for adoption. After you have selected a child that you feel might be a good match for your family, arrangements are made for you to travel to the region in which the child resides to meet him or her. When you arrive at the orphanage, you are allowed a brief interaction with the child. You are given access to the child’s medical and developmental history. Based on your interaction with the child, you will accept or decline the referral. If you accept, you immediately begin processing the paperwork for the adoption. If for any reason, you feel the child is not a good match, you may decline the referral and request a second appointment. Families may wait in Kiev four weeks to recieve a second appointment or return to the states for a few months. Ukraine currently has a yearly quota for the number of foreign citizens who can submit dossiers to the MSP. For 2008, the 1,453 dossiers will be accepted. Children classified as handicapped by Ukraine are not included in this quota.
Families should prepare to make two trips to Ukraine, although the choice to complete the adoption in one extended trip is available. The first trip will last approximately 3-5 weeks after which a 10 (business) day waiting period will be imposed. Once the waiting period is complete, one or both parents will return for a second trip which will last approximately 5-7 days in order to finalize the adoption.
Previously, a trip to Warsaw was required to complete your child's visa requirements. The American Consulate in Kiev, Ukraine is now able to complete all parts of the visa process. This allows you to process your child's visa application in Ukraine and return directly to the United States, without stopping in Warsaw.
Our Ukraine Coordinators have successfully placed many children in their forever families. You can be assured that you will be in good hands throughout your entire adoption process, and our knowledgeable staff will be a constant source of support for you every step of the way.