Friday, November 6, 2015

Armenian Adoption of Special Needs Down Syndrome from Armenia

Another Special Angel from Armenia is being RESCUED by yet another self indignant, self righteous nut this one is from Michigan.
Save the praises for her - and adoration, she is purchasing this child and it's not cheap. 

This poor little "Homie with an extra Chromie"
could have stayed with her family had Robin spent $200,000 to
improve the conditions in Armenia for special needs children instead
she unsuccessfully tried to sue me for ??  That didn't work, nor trying to
harm my reputation, by calling me "crazy" and stirring up trouble via
her nutcase attorney Bennet Kelley<---loves to represent people who are sleazy

Here is Ms Obenauf's tasteless self adoration (hold the applause for this child savior-wait till she is home and
reality of raisng a special needs down syndrome child set in)  Obenauf is even selling T Shirts to raise money
for the adoption.  Does Obenauf know that the USA's foster care system is full of down syndrome babies looking
for a home.   Robin probably doesn't share that part with these do gooders.

Armenian Adoption Adventure- Report from International Social Services-Adoption for child protection measures

A very thorough report from the International Social Services regarding Adoption as a Child Protection Measure  in Armenia.   Although I don't agree with most of it, this is a beginning phase for the programs that will support foster and adoption families in Armenia.  In the case of the Special Needs, the programs have improved but not anywhere close to what the USA offers for Down Syndrome.


Armenian Adoption Adventure- should an ethical agency be advertising for "parents"

Not only advertising for "Parents" but for Muslim parents.

Hopscotch Adoptions, did allow Christian families to adopt muslim children via a fake Kefala

The Ministry of Children Affairs of Morocco put an end to go - Muslim families for Muslim

Other than being tasteless and advertising for Muslim adoptive parents, Robin Sizemore distorts the
number of children abandoned per day in Morocco.

Here is the tasteless ad, sorry to my Muslim friends.  Robin has no class,  She would rather spend over $200,000 in Legal Fees to try and stop myself and my friends from speakng the truth.  #EpicFailed  

Disclaimer to any association to this adoption agency.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Armenian Adoption Adventure- Adoption of Special Needs Armenian Children $35,000 price tag

Another adoption, another ultra religious couple willing to save a child with many needs.  This Savannah fat house wife, advertised her fund raising.  Not only did she raise the money, but she mentions that Armenia is one of the most expensive (does she think the country sets the price)  not only that she hasn't obeyed the terms of her contract by keeping information about her adoption, the country, and agency "quiet" - so much for transparency. 
The money......

Rest assured the family may know something about raising a special needs child, since Ms. Orta teaches Special Education.  This Family has already traveled to Armenia (Gyumri) to register "Evan" (his fake name) in mid July, they will probably get a court date to travel back begining of November 2015.   Meanwhile this Orta family is busy raising funds for the adoption and travel expenses.
Here is where Orka the whale meets "Evan"
Notice how she hides his face AFTER she has plastered his photo 
not only online but in the Savannah Newspaper.  

Photo of "Evan" (fake name) on Orka the whale's website
Robin sure finds these fat ass evangelicals that want to save the world. 

IS ARMENIA EUROPE?  No Robin it's not its Caucaus area of Asia Minor 

 mother's calling: Savannah family nears end of journey to adopt special-needs child

Posted: May 9, 2015 - 10:49pm  |  Updated: May 10, 2015 - 7:54am

Back | Next
&lt;p node=&quot;media-caption&quot;&gt;&lt;span&gt;Ian Maule/Savannah Morning News&lt;/span&gt;&lt;/p&gt;&lt;p node=&quot;media-caption&quot;&gt;&lt;span&gt;Christie Orta helps her daughter, Laura, 8, fill up a tablespoon with water while her husband, Raymundo, prepares dinner at their home in Pooler on Thursday. The Ortas are in the process of adopting an Armenian boy to add to their family. &lt;/span&gt;&lt;/p&gt;  Savannah Morning News
Ian Maule/Savannah Morning News
Christie Orta helps her daughter, Laura, 8, fill up a tablespoon with water while her husband, Raymundo, prepares dinner at their home in Pooler on Thursday. The Ortas are in the process of adopting an Armenian boy to add to their family.

The first time Christie Orta saw a picture of Evan, a little boy with big brown eyes and dark hair, she sensed an instant connection.
“The moment I saw that sweet picture — in that moment, I knew,” she said of finding Evan on Reece’s Rainbow, an adoption advocacy website.
Since 2013, Christie and her husband, Raymundo, have been on a mission to adopt 3-year-old Evan, an. Armenian boy with Down syndrome, and although the journey has been a long and often stressful one, Christie said she believes it’s her calling
“I truly believe that’s who God put in our path, and if it takes us a little bit longer and we have to work a little bit harder to raise the funds, then that’s what we need to do,” she said.
Christie, who’s a special education teacher, was inspired to adopt a special-needs child after teaching students who were adopted under similar circumstances. The Ortas tried to foster to adopt within the United States through the Department of Family and Children’s Services, but after their plan fell through, Christie began online research and found Reece’s Rainbow.
The organization began in Atlanta in 2004 as an outreach program for families with babies with Down syndrome. In 2006, the program expanded to promote international adoption of children with Down syndrome.
“Reece’s Rainbow is an amazing advocacy resource for children, adoptive families, potential adoptive families and those who have hearts for children and want to help out,” she said of the program, which offers various grants and programs for people to make donations.
A lot of those donations, Christie said, come from families like hers that are in the process of adopting a child.
“That is one of the beautiful things about Reece’s Rainbow. Even though a lot of the families are in the process of adoption and are working hard to fundraise for themselves, they still donate and cheer on the adoption of others.”
Through fundraisers, raffles, parties and grants the Ortas have raised $21,000 of the $35,000 they need to bring Evan home: $16,000 from fundraisers and $5,000 from a Show Hope grant, a nonprofit organization founded by singer Steven Curtis Chapman.

The process of faith
Armenia’s adoption process is one of the most expensive and longest programs available, and the total cost is more than Christie makes in a year. (and more than Armenians make in a lifetime) 
“I was concerned about the money and how we were going to do it... Christie was so excited and I was more realistic,” Raymundo said.
“... At first I wasn’t going for it, but she was very passionate about it, so after we talked I knew that’s what she was meant to do. ... But for Christie, from the very first time she saw the picture she was attached.”
Through the ups and downs of fundraising and the adoption process, faith has played a major role for the family.
“Faith is a huge part of it. If this is something God has put into our path, then he’ll lead us to make it happen,” she said. “He was like this shining star of a baby, and I couldn’t figure out why someone hadn’t committed to him, so I was in a rush to get him. And we’ve met some families through Facebook who had actually pulled (Evan’s) file before committing to other children, so now I know that he was meant for us.”
Christie said it’s easy to romanticize what they’re doing, but, in reality, since Evan isn’t walking, he will need complete care much like an infant. But that’s an adjustment that she, Raymundo and their biological daughter, Laura, 8, are prepared for.
Laura admits she’s a little worried about getting a brother, but she’s more than ready to take on the role of big sister. She hopes to be able to help teach Evan to walk, talk and has already called the top bunk on the bunk beds she hopes to get once he arrives.
She’s got big plans for the rest of the bedroom, too, which she hopes to paint baby blue and fill with lots of boy stuff, like dinosaurs.
“I’ve never had a baby brother before, and now I can play with him... And I want to teach him to be like us two,” Laura said, grinning at her dad.
“We don’t like cheese, peanut butter or blue cheese... And I’m not changing any diapers — (mom and dad) can do that.”
Laura’s anxiety and excitement are mutual feelings in the Orta household as they wait for an email to let them know Evan is ready to meet them. Their first visit to Armenia, which they hope to take in June, will last a week and they plan to make the trip as a family.
After they return home, it will take four to six months to finalize the process and then the Ortas will bring their new son home after a monthlong trip back to Armenia. Christie hopes the new family of four will be together and settled in by Christmas, which, to her, would be the best present of all.
“I’ve already bought him a stocking at the day after Christmas sale. ... It’ll be a new normal once we get him home,” she said.
“We’re just anxious to have him home.”

A tax deductible donation to the Ortas can be made online at Donations can also be made to the Christie Orta Adoption Fund at any Wells Fargo Bank branch.

To follow the Ortas’ adoption journey, go to their blog at
This Holtsville, NY - Sag Harbor resident continues
to troll my websites.   He still feels he owes the person who purchased his daughter from 
a poor woman in Armenia, in the days of open adoptions- where if he had any connections could have
negotiated his own adoption.  Even after Robin's firing from Carolina Adoption Services he remains a 
loyal minion to the false savior of children. Reduced to saving overpriced severely disabled children of Armenia
and of those other obscure countries where Robin's nonsense flies under the radar.  He is a short midget lawyer who plays
in a rock band and praises Robin for adoption of muslims kids from Morocco to fake christian clients via Kefala ceremony.  What this manipulated midget doesn't understand is the damage one time BFF Jeannie Sobie has done and Bennet Kelley Yes a few remaining loyalists pseudo Armenians remain, but the old Yahoo group .......keeps it's distance after your true colors came out -       Hope the reunion was a success.  
As international adoptions drop to under 5,000 a year to the USA from a high of 22,000 (2005)  what obscure country is next ? 

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Armenian Government will support the Children of Armenia Fund (COAF)

Dr. Garo Armen started the COAF as a dream behind "it takes a village"  indeed, COAF has worked miracles in Armenia with the children and entire families.
With projects to build schools, clinics and homes the COAF projects get the parents working which is the catalyst for children being in orphanages (98% are social orphans- and have parents) 
The parents work building and receive a wage - they then can provide for their families without having to be fed, clothed and educated by an orphanage. 

What kind of future is there for Armenia with it's generations being raised by orphanages? They will become educated and take judo lessons, art lessons and music lessons at the many centers that are being built by Children of Armenia Fund. 
NOW in cooperation with the Government of Armenia.


Thursday, June 25, 2015

Armenian Adoption Regarding Serbia Adoptions.

Recieved a very alarming inbox notice on an adoption forum that Robin Sizemore and her crazy attorney put a stupid press release on about me being a "cyber bully" and don't believe everything you read on the internet. 
Granted you shouldn't because there is misinformation, but read and make your own decisions.  

copy of note from inbox, the name of the sender is not shared. 

 Hopscotch adoption agency again in action with intercountry adoptions from Serbia.This time with big support of her friend and the most dishonest person I’ve ever heard of,Leah Spring.There were/are many illegal activities of this person,along with the NGO Cherish Our Children International,Leah works for.I have many true informations about it,and it’s just unbeleivable how does Serbian government tolerate it unless…...Leah has mental ilness in her family,paranoid schizophrenia,and is a very mean, unscrupulous person, driven by the desire for power and financial gain.
Hope hearing from soon.It’ll be good for someone to worn Serbian government and American Embassy about Hopscotch and Leah Spring

Never will understand why the Hague Convention was posed in the State Department but adoption agencies such as Hopscotch Adoptons can still work with non-Hague compliant countries.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Adoption of Armenian children severely disabled by Americans

This little down syndrome boy also has leukemia and was purchased
by a couple in Virginia from an orphanage in Armenia.  I am told he is not Armenian
but rather Russian.  Sometimes Armenians will say that about the kids with blond hair or who are Special Needs.
From the "Saviors" video quoting scripture " I will bring your children from the East and
gather you from the West
"  WTF?  Are they fucking retarded?  This Down Syndrome kid they
purchased will have more brains then them.  They even naively on their blog stated "The adoption agency we used
forbids us to name the country and agency it 's against their policy"    Isnt there something strange about a business
that lacks transparency?  That scripture is stupid.  
This family has no children of their own, they are from Virginia. (name is protected even though Robin has broadcasted their name from the internet as getting a "baby boy" from Armenia.

Why they would a childless couple chose a Down Syndrome baby via our friendly "adoption agency" based out of North Carolina.  (you know the one that was fired from Carolina Adoption Services).  There was no bargain on this poor child, this couple still paid $31,000 - sold on Armenian Adoption and "saving a child"

It seems this couple is ultra religious and is boasting about saving a "child" when they could have saved a Down Syndrome baby from the American Foster Care System for less than $5,000.  Gotta love those Armenians selling a damaged bill of goods to odars.

This case is extra sad, 3/4 of the way into this adoption and one month before they were to travel.  It seems our handy dandy trusted adoption agency from North Carolina informed them not only does the boy have Down Syndrome but now has leukemia and is getting chemotherapy treatment.  It's very difficult to believe give the track record of the "Agency" and how sick children have been pawned off on paying customers that there was no information prior to the couple obligating themselves financially and emotionally.  Alas, its one step away from another tragedy and a dead adopted child.

Regardless, the reputation management team of Kelley and his "partner" will still get money from Robin to work miracles on her online reputation and image.  Kelley will spin this into another "saving the children" story and gloss over the fraud part selling damaged goods.  One thing Kelley cannot change is foreign law, and it's decision to halt adoptions unless they are very sick children.  In Fact, Bennet Kelley ruined Robin Sizemore's reputation and business in Armenia with his constant harassment of Armenians (calling us "Mafia") and his fake vexatous litigation and filings with Santa Monica City Attorney and Police Department who have instructed Bennet Kelley to "take a hike" or he will be prosecuted.   Armenia business doesn't concern Bennet Kelley and frankly nothing in California is Bennet Kelley's business.
Freedom of Speech continues, and the truth will always be discussed and transparent not hidden.

From the "Saviors" video
yet these same people haven't lifted a finger to help
American children disabled trapped in the foster care system.  why?

Anouncement from the adoptive parents on their blog about finding out that the boy from Armenia they were obligated to purchase  adopt was not only Down Syndrome but was diagnosed with Leukemia.   Liability wise, Robin should be better advised by her "attorneys" (the one in Long Island is more capable) that health issues and withholding of information (if a family can prove it)  would be a nice big juicy lawsuit against her operation.  This young couple will be spending thousands of dollars in medical and hospital care, this is negligence and unethical. 

Friday, May 29, 2015

Armenian Adoptions - numbers of children adopted from Armenia to Europe and USA

Children adopted from Armenia to Europe USA has dropped drastically from 2007 a high of 86 to 2014 a dismal 16.  That is nearly 90% drop
With America and France remaining consistent they are still low.  Italy and Germany had non.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Armenian Adopitons to the USA for 2014 was a whopping 9 adoptions

Here is the 2014 report from the State Department to Congress, a whopping 6,441 adopted to the USA (lowest since 1982) and Armenia only had 9.  No Robin, things will not change.

Some highlights of the dismal report to Congress

Armenia is one of the most expensive to adopt from even handicapped
children can fetch over $30,000 - robin is a great marketer. 
Armenia is one of the longest waits for adoption at 877 days - (that is from when you file your USCIS paperwork)

Armenian Adoptions and Robin keeps dreaming of days passed- Open Adoptions.

This was sent to my e mail address by someone with a watchful eye, it seems that our friendly Odar Baby Snatcher of Armenia still is dreaming of days ago when "open" adoptions were common place.  To refresh your memories "open Adoption" was when the birth mother or true mother would consent to adoption without a central adoption authority involved.  This was common place in Armenia., however after Armenia ratified and adopted (no pun intended) the Hague Convention on human trafficking, open adoptions are not lawful. 
Someone should inform this blint Robin Sizemore that trying this same trick in our Serbian brother's land will get her into problems.  Open Adoptions are essentially a parent selling their child off in many cases to the highest bidder.  Robin still commands high dollars for disabled and special needs kids because she markets her services and the orphanages as the best in Europe (whatever that means)
Alas, Marketing is what Robin Sizemore's degree is in, we all know there isn't any degrees in Child Trafficking 101, so she is in the business of flesh peddling and promotes herself as some sort of professional credible business woman. 
Robin the open adoption days are over, you can run to every obscure country like Serbia and Guyana looking for these niche business opportunities.  When the country burns through a few hundred kids they close down or ask for more money. 
Your attorneys are not advising you very well, you spent oer $200,000 to try and silence me and still you cannot behave yourself when it comes to selling kids you have a sickness.  You are not allowed into the orphanages in Armenia and you know it.  Robin Sizemore you were fired from Carolina Adoption Services and you will never be able to lie your way into getting any more kids out of Armenia.  I warned you it was "shrinking" your money is no good anymore to Armenians, they are pissed at you for selling off healthy children to odars like Beth "Weinstein" Shepherd, who lives in a 900 square foot house, and other Morons willing to wait around for you to purchase that perfect kid for them.
You fool no one,
Here it is Armenia have fun with her. she deserves all the ill treatment you give her.  You are right to adopt the children out to the French or Italians first, they are great people.  Eduard Amalyan is not paying taxes on the cash Robin sends him so please shake him up with the police and get some money for our wounded veterans of Nargano Karabakh. 
Poor Serbians they will find out that Robin is a crazy lady who claims to save children. 
Now here she is with Cara Helberg or what people call her Cara Switch Around.
Cara worked many years for ATWA, then Partners for Adoption - She even unsuccessfully tried her hand at operating an adoption agency but .....well she is back at work with Lesley Siegel.  Not sure why Bennet Kelley had her down as an interrogatory witness as I still have the letter Ms. Helberg sent me congratulating me on my adoption and to bring my daughter by when she gets home.  Additionally she does know that HHS forbids her from discussing any case outside the prior consent of the client or former client.  Or so Bennet Kelley ill advised her and her some time attorney well actually JD boss Lesley (plastic surgery) Siegel. 
Make sure you all look up Reynoso vs. Across the World Adoptions it's a sad case of deceit.
Here they are two little adoption addicts - BFFs  (big fucking frauds) or (best friends forever)

Cara Helberg and Robin Sizemore BFF
2 peas in a pod. WHERE IS JEANNE SOBIE?
Wonder what happened to Robin's other BFF Jeanne Sobie?
Oh that's right Jeanne is now the Armenian Adoption coordinator for
Carolina Adoption Services the organization that fired Robin Sizemore.
Relax Cara.   Japan adoptions from Mamas n Papas will stay open awhile,
so long as you continue to show clients with a large portfolio.  But you can
forget about Russia.  It's over. 

People in California you should research ATWA before you use them.  Ask Lesley Siegel about her
time working at IAC (Independent Adoption Center)

Who needs the Turks to destroy Byzantine Serbs and Armenians
We have Robin Sizemore for that 
Its very clear, Robin Sizemore has a dislike for the Hague Convention on Human Trafficking and is rebelous on laws that are in place to protect children.  Hence she finds those loophole countries that don't quite have an adoption authority with Hague set up.  HerE marches in Robin Sizemore to these niche countries like Ghana, Serbia, Guyana, Morocco, setting up deals with these countries before the ink is dry she is purchasing and reserving kids for those evangelical clients that spew out bible verses faster than you can spit out $30,000

Good Luck Robin you will need it. Jeanne Sobie has been blabbing her mouth all over Armenia about your affinity for wanting to bypass the central authority.   Old habits die hard.

SEAL (of course, Robin wouldn't know about that)
don't say we never warned you Robin Sizemore
you should have thought about that when you
tried to harm me and my family with your paid for
loser buddy Bennet Gerard Kelley
back at you with the truth reaching to the highest levels
of government. 

YES ROBIN SIZEMORE was FIRED from Carolina Adoption Services
TIME MAGAZINE weighs in on the low international adoption numbers

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Armenian Adoption - They Steal Babies Don't They ? Special Report

They Steal Babies, Don’t They?

Ethiopia, the Hague, and the rise and fall of international adoption. An exclusive investigation of internal U.S. State Department documents describing how humanitarian adoptions metastasized into a mini-industry shot through with fraud, becoming a source of income for unscrupulous orphanages, government officials, and shady operators—and was then reined back in through diplomacy, regulation, and a brand-new federal law.
So by the time Greene’s article was published in 2002, the U.S. State Department—and many regulators in the developed world—knew that what had gone wrong in Cambodia could go wrong almost anywhere. It had happened in Peru, Colombia, Romania; it was happening right then in Nepal, in Vietnam, and most notoriously in Guatemala. The problem was the underlying myth: While there are indeed some healthy infants, toddlers, and young children desperately in need of adoption, “millions” is inaccurate. As I have reported extensively elsewhere, most children in need of international adoption have special medical needs, trauma, or are five or older, like Greene’s Ethiopian-born daughter Helen.
Many poor nations’ international adoption programs started, as in the Ethiopia that Greene portrayed, with a few genuinely humanitarian adoptions, saving children from desperate circumstances. But once word spread among hopeful Western parents that healthy little ones were coming quickly out of a particular country, far more people would sign up than a small, poor country could effectively manage. National governments would become unable to continue carefully supervising every adoption. Demand would begin to outstrip supply, leading to that obvious two-part capitalist solution: increased prices and increased production.
In the case of inter-country adoptions, far too often, orphans were “produced” by unscrupulous middlemen who would persuade desperately poor, uneducated, often illiterate villagers whose culture had no concept of permanently severing biological ties to send their children away—saying that wealthy Westerners would educate their children and send them home at age 18, or would send a monthly stipend, or some other culturally comprehensible fostering plan.
But as I mentioned earlier , there’s a hopeful ending to this story. The developed world has pulled together a treaty, the 1993 Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption, that offers a regulatory system and child welfare guidelines. After 21 years, the Hague Convention has been fully joined by 93 countries, including—in 2008—the U.S. But Ethiopia is not one of them. Until now, because of a quirk in U.S. law, that meant that American agencies working in Ethiopia were also not governed by Hague rules. But in July 2014, the Universal Accreditation Act went into effect, a new U.S. law that plugs at least our part of that particular hole. When that law came into effect, the adoption agencies that most troubled the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa shut their doors and went out of business. At roughly the same time, the governments of the United States and Ethiopia agreed to work together to screen out fraud. The story of adoption from Ethiopia, in other words, is a story of a crisis—but a crisis in which those involved managed, at least partly, to eke out some significant regulatory, legal, and diplomatic improvements
 The U.S. has no legal or regulatory control over what happens inside Ethiopia, or any other foreign nation, and zero legal authority over local child or family welfare services or orphanages. All that was the responsibility of the Ethiopian government. The U.S. couldn’t fine American agencies working in Ethiopia or investigate any suspicious increase in the number of “abandoned” babies showing up in a particular orphanage. The only tool that the U.S. has—and it’s a very unwieldy tool—is U.S. immigration law.
Here’s how it works: Imagine that someone wants to adopt, and has heard wonderful things about adoption from Ethiopia. He finds an adoption agency that Ethiopia has licensed to work there, choosing it because he likes the director, or a friend praised it, or because the director is, like him, an evangelical Christian. After he gets his home study and other paperwork completed, and puts down a significant deposit, the adoption agency sends him a “referral,” a picture and a dossier of information about a child it says needs a home. If he accepts this referral, saying that, yes, he wants to adopt this child, he may be asked to send more money to “reserve” her, lest she be offered to some other waiting family. With the information that your agency sends, he fills out the elaborate I-600 application, the “petition to classify orphan as an immediate relative,” asking the U.S. government to grant him a visa to bring that child home.
For the hopeful parent, that’s seen as nearly the end of the “paper pregnancy”: He has endured home studies, fingerprinting, criminal records checks, agency shopping, months or years of waiting, and has finally fallen in love with the picture of this child, and can barely wait to bring her home to her room. But for the U.S. government, the I-600 orphan visa application is not the end; it’s just the beginning. That is the very first time that the U.S. government is officially authorized by an American citizen to investigate that child’s circumstances, to see whether she is an orphan under U.S. immigration law. The U.S. authorities have to hold adopting Americans responsible for whether that promised child is, in fact, free for adoption—on the fiction that the prospective parents have some independent knowledge about the child

Consular officers and aid workers both knew that sometimes African entrepreneurs figure out that running an orphanage can be a profitable cash business: Solicit some children from the countryside by offering to feed, house, and educate them for free, and then solicit donations from American churches or European charities, skimming plenty off the top.

Of course, U.S. officials did not want to question the legality of the adoption at the very end, after an American family had legally adopted a child under Ethiopian law, making it impossible for them to fly home as a family. Doing so had led to disasters in Cambodia, Vietnam, and Guatemala. On the other hand, no Embassy official wanted to put an American seal of approval on what could be seen as, essentially, child trafficking for profit—a term that the U.S. didn’t use officially, but which Embassy officials were using amongst themselves in these memos and emails. So the Embassy had to work with the adoption agencies, local orphanages, and Ethiopian authorities the way embassies always do: through influence and pressure, pushing them to follow the rules.IV
In 2008 U.S. officials did gain an important tool. Eight years earlier, the U.S. had passed a 2000 law called the Intercountry Adoption Act (IAA), authorizing entry into the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption. In 2008, the U.S. at last finalized and put into practice the detailed regulations that adoption agencies had to follow in order to be “Hague accredited.” Although it was and is a highlyimperfect system, the IAA and Hague accreditation at least gave the U.S. government a legal relationship with some adoption agencies—so the U.S. wasn’t dealing only with the prospective adoptive parents, who had the least amount of information about what was going on.
But here’s the loophole: Because Ethiopia had not joined the Hague convention, IAA accreditation was not required before American agencies could help Americans adopt from that country. Which meant that American agencies that had not passed a Hague review—which included some of the worst, with terrible records of child trafficking—were free to work in one of the countries that had the fewest protections in place from unscrupulous actors. And by this point, to the U.S. Embassy’s frustration, Ethiopian authorities were apparently licensing every applicant—for reasons never made clear.
That doesn’t mean everyone in the Ethiopian government was blind to the problems. In July of 2008, the Ethiopian foreign minister told U.S. ambassador Donald Yamamoto that the Ethiopian government was considering shutting down international adoption entirely, because the government “had concluded that middlemen were actively buying and selling children for intercountry adoptions.”
According to the cable, the Embassy tried to persuade the Ethiopian minister not to do anything so drastic, since that would leave too many children and parents in “legal limbo”: Americans who had adopted children under Ethiopian law would be unable, under American law, to take those children home. Tom DiFilipo, CEO of the Joint Council on International Children’s Services (JCICS), offered the Ethiopian government $220,000 to help pay for better oversight, ensuring that its members’ donations came through JCICS so that no individual agency would be able to use its donations to pressure for more orphan referrals—although, of course, even JCICS’s donation could be interpreted as paying to keep the adoption pipeline open. An agreement was never finalized, according to DiFilipo.
JCICS and the U.S. Embassy began urging the Ethiopian government to de-license at least half of those 70 adoption agencies, including—for the U.S.—the ones that had not received Hague accreditation by the U.S. State Department. Ultimately, the Ethiopian government did not suspend adoption and instead decided to review all of the agencies. But by September 2008, it was clear—to the Embassy’s frustration—that troubled agencies would stay licensed, even those that had apparently lied about the children’s origins, failed to keep records on children’s backgrounds, changed children’s ages to make them more “adoptable,” shuffled children from one part of the country to another so their families couldn’t be traced, and so on.
According to one U.S. Embassy document, Ethiopian officials said they didn’t blame American adoption agencies for the irregularities; rather, they blamed Ethiopian orphanages for cutting corners to bring in money. Ethiopian officials bemoaned how little power the Ethiopian federal government had over regional and local governments that ran family policy, as is true in the U.S., where the federal government does not have the power to oversee, say, a Florida-based adoption agency (except, under the new law, if that adoption agency wants to arrange adoptions from overseas).

Many poor nations’ international adoption programs started with a few genuinely humanitarian adoptions, saving children from desperate circumstances. But once word spread, far more people would sign up than a small, poor country could effectively manage.

As one Embassy official, Kelly Folliard, wrote to Abigail Rupp, the consular chief, “Last week I spoke at length with the orphanage director from Kebebe Tsehaye government-run orphanage.... He mentioned that they haven’t received any new babies in over a month. Babies are typically brought in by local police, and the average is about 2-3 babies per week. The director is convinced that the police are being paid by private agencies to bring the babies to them.”V
And so by 2009 the U.S. changed its focus and began trying to lean on the American adoption agencies that it had reason to believe were behaving unethically. (For more details, see the Schuster Institute’s index of U.S. adoption agencies mentioned in these FOIAs, with the agencies’ responses to what those State Department documents say.) For instance, Embassy staff visited the infamous Gelgela orphanage, which had been exposed in a scathing March 2010 Australian documentary as having solicited children directly from villagers. That documentary, and another report from CBS News, spoke with Americans Katie and Calvin Bradshaw, who had adopted three Ethiopian sisters through Christian World Adoption—only to find that the girls had expected to return to their middle-class family back in Ethiopia