Monday, August 22, 2011

Adoption: Why Does It Cost So Much?

We're in the thick of it now.  Paperwork aplenty, but starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel.  One of the questions I've been getting a lot lately is the simple - "How much does it cost?"  so I thought I'd expand a little on that today.
First of all, cost varies by agency, country program, and even the state you live in.  For AWAA's Ethiopia program, and for us living in PA, here's the breakdown of our costs....

Application & Dossier Building
   Application Fee                                      $250
   1st Installment of Program Fee                $1500
   Home Study (varies by state)                  $1800
   Home Study travel fees                           $78
   Adoptive Parent Training                        $175
   Document Collecting, etc                        $100-$500
   USCIS/Fingerprinting                             $890
   Notarization/Certification/Authentication  $400

Dossier Submission & Waiting
   Courier Service                                       $150
   2nd Installment of Program Fee               $2000
   Post Adoption Report Deposit                $1000
   Dossier Service & Translation                 $800
   1/2 International Program Fee                 $3750

Referral & Travel
   International Specialist Consultation         $100-$400
   3rd Installment of Program Fee               $1500
   Post Adoption Administrative Fee           $385
   1/2 International Program Fee                 $3750
   Trip 1 Airfare                                         $2400-$4000
   Trip 1 In Country Package                     $1400-$2500
   Trip 1 Visas                                           $40
   Trip 2 Airfare                                         $2400-$4000
   Trip 2 Airfare (child)                               $250-$1000
   Trip 2 In Country Package                     $1000-$2000
   Trip 2 Visas                                           $40
   Visa/Embassy Fee (child)                       $404

Post Adoption
   Post Adoption Visits                              $600-$1300
   Post Adoption Visit travel fees               $0-$300
   Post Adoption Report REFUND           ($1000)
   Other costs (doctors, etc)                      $100-$1000

TOTAL:   $27,762-$34,912

Readoption in the United States is optional, but recommended, and varies by state - $300-$1500.  Another thing to consider is this is the estimated costs for one child.  If we would receive a referral for two children, some of the costs would increase.

Ok, I'm feeling overwhelmed.  How about you?  The next question I have gotten is, "Are you independently wealthy?"  And the answer to that is a big fat NO.  (I'm a stay at home mom, and have you seen my mad couponing skillz?)

It means we are stepping out in faith.  We believe so strongly that adoption is God's plan for our family that we will do it.....even if we don't necessarily know how.  Yes, we do have some of the money saved.  Yes, we could take out a loan, and we will if we need to (there are places who will sometimes grant interest-free loans for the purpose of adoption).  Yes, we will begin applying for grants as soon as our home study is finalized.  Yes, we will be putting house plans on the backburner (my hideous kitchen will remain hideous for a few more years!)  And yes, we are so so thankful for people who have given to us through various ways so far (our coffee fundraiser, through a PayPal donation, items for our upcoming yard sale, or a friend who has donated her notary services!)  We have a few more fundraisers coming up and we are so thankful for the friends behind them!! 

It is expensive.  But God is God.  He can provide us with that money in whatever way He sees fit.  Personally, I vote for a basket of bills floating down from heaven :)  We are trusting in Him and also doing everything we can to save and raise the money.  It will be worth it.

"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you wear.  Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?  Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them.  Are you not much more valuable than they?  Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?"  -Matthew 6:25-27


Kathleen said...

Wow. I knew it was expensive but wow. I will be praying for your finances. God is faithful!

Natalie said...

That's crazy, Angie, but so worth it! I've been thinking and praying for you guys a lot! Do you need more stuff for your yard sale? I definitely have stuff I could swing by and drop off if you wanted it!

Emily @ mirrors metaphors and kaleidoscopes said...

We have good friends going though this process as well. We feel called to adopt also, but yes, it is SO expensive. I will pray for you. I also wanted to let you know that I really enjoy reading your blog and have mentioned you in my latest post, for the versatile blogger award.



Meri @ twofive365 said...

Adoption is very expensive. But I am glad that you are listening to God's will for your lives, He will reward you richly! There is a couple here who did this very cool fund raiser for theirs--they designed t-shirts and sold them, they made several thousand dollars for their daughter's adoption. I will pray for your family as they continue on this path! :D

Jen said... well bring me to tears! THANK YOU for that example of following God's will!!!!

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