Peru Adoption
TRAVEL : QUIXO PERU : Special Interests

Adopting a Child from Peru

Your Guide: Catherine Criolla
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International adoptions from Peru are legal and regulated and there is a community of families with Peruvian born children living in the U.S. They have gatherings in the U.S., family trips back to Peru, and other activities. Adopting a child from Peru is not a simple process, and it is useful to do a considerable amount of research before embarking on this (or any) kind of international adoption.

A good place to begin is with organizations of adoptive parents and families (there are several, with considerable web presence). Also, start doing research on health issues at the Oakland Children’s Hospital International Adoption Clinic. They provide everything from pre-travel consultations through ongoing care — even if you are nowhere near northern California they are an invaluable resource.

If you are deciding to adopt a child from Peru, the first thing you must find is a reputable agency approved by the Peruvian government. The list of these (pdf) is available at the U.S. Embassy Website. You should evaluate these agencies carefully before selecting one. Be aware that if you are working with another agency from the U.S. they will need to go through one of these agencies.

You should also read the U.S. State Department documents about adopting from Peru. These provide all the rules from the U.S. side.

Over years of watching friends and acquaintances go through the process of adopting a child from Peru here are my observations:

  1. Those who know what they’re getting into do better than those who’re less prepared. This means:
    1. do a lot of research up front
    2. be very sure you have the time, money and the support to get all the way through the adoption process
    3. make sure you have the infrastructure and support you’ll need at home
    4. learn about Peru
  2. The adoption agencies will tell you up front that you will need to spend a good deal of time in Peru, but they generally underestimate the real length of time that it will take. Check with parents who have recently adopted to get a sense of their experiences
  3. There are often bumps in the road, or apparent bumps in the road as you go through the process. The explanations of these can be confusing and frustrating. Again, having talked with other adoptive parents about their experiences will be the best guide.
  4. Those who speak some Spanish and who make it their business to learn about Peru and to try and enjoy and appreciate the country have a better time of it — not because things go any faster or smoother but because they just have a better and more interesting time. The Peruvian courts and governement agencies are not necessarily the best things about Peru, so try to spend some time seeing the better things about the country. While you’re stuck in Lima you can explore the museums, take day trips, eat lots of wonderful food, and explore. I suggest finding a comfortable place to stay in the Miraflores area where there’s plenty to do (coffee shops, bookstores, plenty of restaurants of all levels, lots of shopping, etc.).

Web Resources for families with children adopted from Peru

PeruAdopt listserve — a yahoo group for families with adoptive children born in Peru (pre-and post-adoption)

PeruToddlerstoTeens listerve — a yahoo group for families with adoptive children born in Peru (post-adoption)

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