Misguided Saviors: An Analysis of International Adoption Issues and Necessary Considerations for Prospective Adoptive Parents

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Rich, Louisa; Colorado College
Family, Life Course, and Society; Inequality and Stratification; Place and Environment; Sociology
paper description
International adoption flows from poor countries to rich countries and in the past it has been regarded as a good way to help those in need, by giving impoverished abandoned children families. Recently, however, the need for adoption in these countries has lessened considerably, but the desire to adopt has not. With less children available for adoption and a high demand, combined with large sums of money pouring into less developed countries, adoption scandals and poor practices have been surfacing over the past few years. The right of the child is often not being protected in adoption procedures and associations such as UNICEF, Terre Des Hommes, and the International Social Service are concerned with the pressures coming from receiving countries on the countries of origin. Many prospective adoptive parents are not informed about these issues and continue to line up for their turn to adopt. International adoption involves many actors at different levels and thus it is difficult to fully comprehend the situation. Who is truly benefitting from this and is it in the best interests of the child? Why are so many prospective parents unaware of the risks involved? This report will try to answer these questions and analyze the considerations that should be taken in when deciding whether international adoption is the right decision.