Bailout of adoption agency approved

Date: 2009-09-22

The Windsor Star

A proposal to bail out a bankrupt adoption agency that left hundreds of international adoptions in limbo has been approved by clients.

Under the plan, families in the process of adopting will pay $4,000 each to help complete the agency's unfinished adoptions.

About 350 Canadian families were in the process of adopting overseas children when Cambridge, Ont.-based Kids Link International Adoption Agency, which operated as Imagine Adoption, was placed into bankruptcy on July 13.
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Waterloo Regional Police have launched a fraud investigation into the agency.

The restructuring plan still needs approval from a court.


Media coverage continues

In an article titled "Families still hopeful of adopting", a PAP shares his thoughts/feelings regarding the added fees he's expected to pay to keep his adoption dreams alive and an adoption agency afloat:

The plan must first be approved by a bankruptcy court and licensed by the Ontario Ministry of Community Services.

Hazzard said if all goes to plan the first half of a $4,000 startup fee for every family will be paid by November.

Adoptions could start as early as April, 2010 and be complete for every family by August, 2011, she said.

"We're feeling pretty positive about it," said Brian Sandau who is hoping to adopt with his wife Angela. "There's obviously some hurdles that are left to get over but for the most part I think it's going to go well."

Sandau, 33, is originally from Sarnia and now lives in Waterloo. He said after investing 18 months and $13,000 with Imagine, paying an extra $4,000 seemed unreasonable at first.

"Initially when I heard about that I was very upset about it because, my thinking at that particular time was, 'Why should I give you more money?'"

He's still not thrilled by the prospect but said it's a better alternative than starting over with another agency.

"I don't necessarily like it, but it's the better of two evils," he said.

Hazzard said the additional cost can't be helped.

"We've come this far and to look back in five years time and say we stopped short because we didn't want to pay $4,000 seems kind of out of the question," she said.

Better than two evils -- give more money (to an agency that's being investigated for it's questionable spending practices), and get the promised child, or lose all the money invested and start all over, with another adoption service.


Considering what Australian (as opposed to Canadian) news media is featuring about Ethiopian "orphans", I wonder how so many PAP's can be so eager to rush/continue a process that involves all sorts of questionable practices.

Would halting all international adoptions from Ethiopia, (like it was done in Romania), so extensive investigations can take place, (weeding out the bad-guys) be such a terrible thing to ask people who are eager-to-adopt-a-foreign-orphan?

Looking in my crystal ball

I think Ethiopia's future when it comes to Inter-country adoption will more likely resemble Guatemala than Romania. What happened in Romania, was part of the accedance to the European Union and the demand of social reform in achieving so.

I guess Ethiopia will somewhere down the line temporarily close, reopen again, become part of the Hague Convention. Finally some countries will likely stop doing business with Ethiopia. Countries like Canada and Sweden come to mind. Before the US follows suit, Ethiopia will probably close its borders itself.

Of course nothing is for certain in this. There may be a regime change in the next couple of years that change the entire dynamics. So all is very uncertain, but my guess is they will eventually close, so it's good to start looking out for the countries the adoption circus will jump onto next.

Pound Pup Legacy