As we reported on Friday, the U.S. State Department announced that adoptions with Vietnam are re-opening, on a limited basis.
Vietnam’s Central Adoption Authority, the Ministry of Justice, announced that it has authorized two U.S. adoption service providers to facilitate intercountry adoptions in Vietnam:
Dillon International, Inc.
Holt International Children’s Services, Inc.
Effective on September 16, the United States will process Hague Convention adoptions from Vietnam through a program for children with special needs, children aged five and older, and children in biological sibling groups (Special Adoption Program).
Soon after, the two agencies released their own Joint Announcement:
“We are honored by the trust Vietnam’s Ministry of Justice has placed in our agencies to serve some of the nation’s most vulnerable children,” said Kyle Tresch, Dillon International’s executive director.
“Both Holt and Dillon consider it a privilege to continue in our long-standing commitments to meet the needs of children in Vietnam,” added Phillip Littleton, Holt International president and CEO. “We are grateful for all of the efforts of the Ministry of Justice to develop strategies to ensure ethical adoption practices in Vietnam and for the U.S. Department of State’s support for these efforts.”
Today the US Embassy in Vietnam posted details of the ceremony in which the agencies were officially given their licenses.
On September 16, 2014, Chargé d’Affaire Claire Pierangelo led the U.S. Mission delegation to attend a ceremony held by the Ministry of Justice of Vietnam, during which Mr. Nguyen Van Binh, Director of the Department of Adoptions, Ministry of Justice has officially presented the licenses to the representatives of two U.S. adoption service providers – Dillon International and Holt International Children’s Services
For those hoping for more detail about the program, USCIS posted this notice that clarifies the categories of children and how to go about starting the paperwork process:
Prospective Adoptive Parents Wishing to Pursue a Hague Convention Adoption in Vietnam
Under this Hague Adoption Convention Special Adoption Program, U.S. prospective adoptive parents must work with an Adoption Service Provider (ASP) that has been authorized by Vietnam to facilitate intercountry adoptions under the Special Adoption Program and may only seek to adopt a child or children from Vietnam referred by the Vietnamese Central Authority:
Who has/have special needs;
Who is/are age five and older; or
Who are in a biological sibling group.
If the child you are intending to adopt meets one or more of these qualifications, your adoption case can proceed under the Hague Adoption Convention Special Adoption Program.
Note: USCIS will not approve any Hague Adoption Convention petitions for children from Vietnam who do not meet one or more of these three categories under the Special Adoption Program, or who were not referred by the Vietnamese Central Authority. Additionally, USCIS will deny any Form I-800 petition where an ASP was used in Vietnam that was not authorized to facilitate intercountry adoptions under the Special Adoption Program.
Dillon International has begun posting information on their website about the new program. In addition to the requirements mentioned by USCIS, Dillon lists requirements that applicants be between 25-55 years of age, married a minimum of two years and have a maximum of five children already in the home. Single applicants will also be accepted. Dillon says both parents will be required to travel and stay in Vietnam for approximately 2-3 weeks. The overall predicted cost of adopting from Vietnam with Dillon is $25,955 – $32, 165. It appears that the Vietnamese government fees cover about $8000 of that total amount. (We are still in the process of researching the exact fees required by the Vietnamese government. )
Holt International also posted an announcement on their website, but have not yet posted any additional information about their program and fees.
As to the exact definition of “Special Needs” the best information we have comes from a December 2011 Vietnamese Decree Document.
Article 3. Disable, dangerous disease children are specific adopted
Disable, dangerous disease children are specific adopted under provisions in point d clause 2 Article 28 of Law on Adoption include: children with cleft lip and cleft palate, children who are blinded with one or two eyes; mutism, deaf; dumb; children with curved arms or legs, children with missing fingers, hands, foot (feet), toes, children infected with HIV; children with heart diseases; children with navel, groin, belly hernia; children without an anus or sexual organ; children with blood disease; children with diseases requiring life-long treatment; children with other disabilities or dangerous disease which restricting the chances of adoption.
For more information, Dillon International’s contact is Jynger Roberts firstname.lastname@example.org (918) 749-4600. Holt invites interested applicants to contact them through their online webform.
We will continue to post updates and news as we receive them.