What Does Special Needs Look Like in Burkina Faso?


burkina fasoFamilies seeking to adopt a special needs child from Africa may want to consider Burkina Faso as a possible option. Burkina Faso is a landlocked country located in central Africa and signatory to The Hague Convention. Because Burkina Faso is a Hague country, it affords prospective adoptive parents added protection that non-convention countries may not have. As in most of Africa, there is a need for adoptive parents in Burkina Faso, particularly for special needs children.

Burkina Faso’s central authority is responsible for matching waiting families with children in need and every few months the central authority releases a special needs list of children in need of forever families. Children are considered special needs for a variety of reasons which can include medical needs or being older. The special needs we have now seen include:

  • Children ages 6 years old and older
  • Children testing positive for Hepatitis C
  • Children testing positive for Sickle Cell disease

Other special needs common to children in Africa can include testing positive for HIV and children born with birth defects such as cleft lip and palate. Some special needs are considered to be mild and/or correctable or managed through medical treatment. Some may be more severe and not correctable.

Adopting a child with special needs may allow families who wouldn’t ordinarily meet the adoption requirements from Burkina Faso to still be eligible as adoptive parents. For example, Burkina Faso wants no more than two children in the home after placement, but they are typically willing to waive this requirement if the family is open to adopting a special needs child.

Families should share their referred child’s medical information with an international adoption clinic. Families should realistically assess their parenting abilities and family situation to be sure there they are good fit for the child’s needs.

There is no greater gift to a special needs child than a forever family. There is no greater way to make a difference in a child’s life than to love a child with a special need who may not otherwise find a forever family.  Burkina Faso’s special needs children are seeking forever families and the love that they deserve.  If you are looking to adopt from Africa, if you are looking to adopt a special needs child from Africa or if you are looking to adopt an older child from Africa, take a look at our Burkina Faso program. Your child may just be waiting there for you to bring him or her home!

For more information on adopting from Burkina Faso, please contact us.

Photo Credit: Fernando Hidalgo Marchione

Sonja Brown works as the International Program Director for MLJ Adoptions’ programs in Burkina Faso, Democratic Republic of Congo, Haiti and Samoa. Sonja is also proud to work directly with our Individualized Country Program families who are adopting from countries where no adoption service providers currently operate.