- Agency fee mid-payment, $1500 (which reflects a 25% pastor's discount).Honestly, I have never asked what exactly the program fee covers. I do know that there is a full-time, wonderful staff in VA that must get paid. The staff makes everything happen, they lead us through the entire complicated process. And they even do it cheerfully! I also know that there is staff in Ethiopia who meets with adoptive families when they arrive, makes court appointments, and handles paperwork.
- Translation/Authentication: $800. That huge stack of paperwork we're gathering? It all has to be translated into Amharic. And authenticated, which give assurance that it's all legal, etc.
- Post-Placement Deposit: $1000. This is actually refundable after the post-placement visits with the social worker have been completed at 3, 6, 9 and 12 months. This is the agency's way of ensuring families meet the standards set by the gov't of Ethiopia for reporting back on how their orphans are doing. If families don't cooperate with this, the country may decide that they don't have enough control over what is happening to their population, and close down adoptions (I have heard this is what happened with Guatemala, at least in part. International adoption is one comlicated can of worms!).
- Courier fee: $150. Get that important stack of paperwork delivered safe and sound!
- 1st half of international program fee: $3750. This covers children's medical exams, the transitional home child-rearing, and an orphanage donation. All good stuff.
I'm working on a post explaining why exactly we're doing fundraising for this adoption. I mean besides the obvious...we think it is right and good for "the church" to support adoption. I hope to share our perspectives on this, and to illustrate how our own church and our families have grasped the heart of it. Stay tuned.