Ukraine Adoption MontageNightlight Christian Adoptions’ Ukraine adoption program has been active since 1998 through our South Carolina office (which was formerly Carolina Hope Christian Adoption Agency) and has since moved to our Colorado Office. The fees for an international adoption from Ukraine are reasonable, and we estimate that the process will take about one year from application to completion depending upon the type of child you are seeking to adopt. Your wait time will likely be at the shorter end of this range if you are open to a special needs or older child.

Staying on top of the regulations and the idiosyncrasies of Ukrainian adoptions requires someone with firsthand knowledge of adoptions in Ukraine. Nightlight Christian Adoptions uses a facilitator in Ukraine to meet with key officials. Additionally, Nightlight is committed to helping families prepare for the adoption of children from Ukraine. Because Ukraine does not permit families to pre-identify a child before traveling, you will be identifying a child in-country. Our pre-adoption education requirements will help prepare you by providing information about developmental delays and health issues. Because of the nature of children in need of adoption from Ukraine, you will be learning about the adoption of children over 6 years old and/or children with special needs – and the resources you possess to parent such children.

CHILDREN AVAILABLE

Ukraine adoption is a wonderful international adoption program for families desiring to adopt children (6 and above) or children with special needs ages 14 months and older. Many sibling groups are also available. The types of special needs include cleft palate/cleft lip, club foot, hole in the heart, orthopedic needs, and vision or hearing impairments; there are also more significant needs such as alcohol-related birth defects, Down Syndrome, and mental retardation. Many older children with only minor (and correctable health challenges are also in need of adoption (in the 3-5 age range, and even more in the 6-15 range). Children who would otherwise have little hope for a future can have a better life with the emotional and physical security that a loving family can offer, along with the availability of excellent medical care in the United States. Sibling groups may be available.

ELIGIBILITY TO ADOPT

Based on Ukrainian law, you must be married and be at least 15 years older than the child you seek to adopt and no more than 45 years older than the child. If you have any criminal background or any mental health history, please let us know so that we can determine if the authorities in Ukraine will accept your application.

PROCESS

1. Begin your adoption home study and submit form I-600A to CIS.
2. Submit your home study to SDAPRC and be registered. At this time, you will be given a date to submit your dossier.
3. Begin to assemble your dossier. We will give you detailed instructions.
4. While you are waiting for your CIS approval, Nightlight assists in the apostilling of your dossier.
5. Once CIS has approved your adoption homestudy, you will receive your I-171H pre-approval notice.
6. About 3-4 weeks after you have received your approval from Immigration (I-171H), you should receive a packet of information from the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv.
7. Your dossier will be hand delivered to the SDAPRC by the translator in Ukraine after all the documents are gathered, including your I-171H approval from CIS. Once your documents are submitted, they are reviewed and the facilitator will be notified that your dossier is in good order or if corrections need to be made.
8. At the time that you are notified of the status of your dossier, you should also be given a travel date.

TRAVEL & ADOPTION

You select your child once you are in the country. When you arrive in Kyiv (Kiev), an English-speaking representative will meet you. The next day you will go to the SDAPRC, where you will be given information about a child who is the same sex and approximate age that you requested. You will most likely see a picture of the child. Once you have identified a child to adopt and met with the child at his orphanage, you proceed in that region with the completion of the adoption. You will go to court and meet with a judge about one week after you have met with your child. At this time, you will be required to have a 10-day-wait period. During this time you can go home or you can stay in Ukraine. You then receive your child, and your guide will make arrangements to get your child’s new birth certificate and Ukrainian passport, as well as file paperwork with the U.S. Embassy in Kiev for your child’s U.S. visa. This process takes about 1 week to 10 days. Usually you will stay almost 4 weeks in Ukraine for the entire adoption process or you could make two shorter trips.

The in-country stay gives you time to visit your child daily at the orphanage and to begin the bonding process. It is amazing to see how children change while their parents are there visiting with them. It is quite common for a toddler to begin walking during this time and reaching other developmental milestones. The bonding process is very important, and being in the country allows your child to transition from being in an orphanage to being with you, his new family.

POST ADOPTION

Within 30 days of your arrival home, you must register your child with the Ukrainian Embassy. Your homestudy provider will prepare two post adoption reports and submit them to Nightlight: one report will be completed after the social worker visits your home within 3 months of your child’s arrival home and another about 10 months after your child is home. Each year for the first three years that your child is home, you must send a post adoption report to Nightlight. The first two reports will be conducted by your homestudy provider as stated above. These reports include your child’s developmental progress and pictures. This is a very serious commitment; in the past Ukraine has placed a moratorium on adoptions because adoptive families did not send in yearly post placement reports as requested by the Embassy of Ukraine. Therefore, Nightlight requires that families make a good faith deposit into their Nightlight account. Upon submission of these post placements, a portion of that deposit will be returned to you.

COSTS

The program fee for a Ukraine adoption is $21,500. Additional estimated expenses of approximately $14,815 will bring the total cost to approximately $36,315.Your out-of-pocket expenses may further be reduced if you receive scholarships or employer-provided adoption benefits. Exhibit A of our contract lists all fees and estimated costs for the Ukraine program. Please call (970-663-6799) or e-mail Kate Feeback, kate@nightlight.org, with any questions.

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To learn more about adopting from Ukraine, you may contact us, call our office at (970) 663-5501, or email our Ukraine coordinator, Kate Feeback, at Kate@nightlight.org.

Ukraine Adoption Program Details:

  • Program fee is $21,500
  • Children in this program will be 5 years of age and older
  • The typical referral time is 6 months
  • Parental Age Restrictions will be determined by the adoption agency

More information on Ukraine Adoptions

Ukraine Adoption Overview
U.S. Relations with Ukraine
Intercountry Adoption Information on Ukraine