Monday, May 23, 2011

Evangelicals Push For Adoptions in Children's Home Countries

From the Louisville, Kentucky Courier-Journal, a new variety of the Christian adoption movement:
Cristi Slate, whose biological parents adopted eight children from Russia, might seem to be a natural spokeswoman for the burgeoning emphasis on adoption among evangelical Christians.

And she is — but not just in the familiar sense of Americans bringing home adopted children from overseas.

She's also promoting a program to support adoptions of Russian and other orphans by families within their home countries.

"Americans coming in and putting in their programs is not the best thing," she said last week during a national conference, the Christian Alliance for Orphans Summit, that drew about 1,500 people at Southeast Christian Church in Louisville. It often leaves "nationals feeling disrespected," said Slate, grants manager for Doorways to Hope, which has supported such things as repairs and expansions to adoptive families' homes in Ukraine.

She wasn’t alone. At the same conference workshop, others spoke up from countries as diverse as Ukraine and Uganda about efforts to recruit adoptive parents.
I find this an encouraging development.


Sharon said...

I actually don't think this is a new development -- just one that is newly publicized. As I wrote recently on my blog, as far as I can tell, the Christian "orphan care" movement is the only place where you have a critical mass of ordinary people talking about issues of international child welfare. They are promoting adoption, but also community development, education, and family preservation.

Dawn said...

Sharon, I don't think this is the "only" place these conversations are taking place. Save The Children, UNICEF and numerous NGOs are also deeply committed to community development, education and family preservation.

Sharon said...

Hi Dawn,

I know that development organizations are working on these issues -- you missed the key part of my comment: "ordinary people." These are large groups of everyday citizens talking about these issues, not development professionals. International child welfare isn't on the radar for most ordinary folks.

Many of us may have discomfort with the faith aspect of this movement, and I for one am not in favor of adoption etc for conversion or salvation, but the people and organizations involved in Christian orphan care are quite varied, just as in any other Christian outreach. I think anyone who cares about these issues needs to be open-minded and engage these folks in dialogue to encourage best practices, not dismiss them out of hand, which I see a lot in the media.

Jessica said...

Thanks for making these points, Sharon. Worth pondering.