I do many consultations with families who are looking to adopt and trying to choose an agency. For many, the same question is asked at the end of our conversation, “Is there anything I didn’t ask that I should have?” Families new to the adoption world are navigating a sea of agencies, legalities and processes they do not understand. Below is a list of questions many times not asked that should be asked to a prospective agency. I’ve also included the answers to these questions as related to our DRC program.
- How long has the agency worked in that country?
MLJ Adoptions, Inc. was the first agency to work in DRC. We opened the program in 2009 and began bringing children home in August 2010.
- How many children has the agency successfully brought home?
- Is the agency bonded? Licensed? Hague Accredited/Approved?
- Have the Executive Director and Program Director visited the country?
- How often does the agency staff travel to Congo?
- How does the agency receive their referrals?
- Does the agency use foster care or do the children remain in the orphanage?
- Is there in country staff that can assist adoptive families while in country?
MLJ provides in country staff from the moment your plane lands in DRC. Our staff drives you to each locale that you need to go to or want to go to. In fact, we insist you go nowhere alone while staying in DRC and only leave your hotel compound when accompanied by one of our drivers and/or in country staff.
- How quickly does the agency respond to your emails and phone calls?
- Has the agency ever represented a family whose orphan visa was denied?