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Thursday, January 31, 2008

Mumbai’s great adoption rush

Mumbai and rush always seem to go hand in hand. Take a look at this article published today (January 31st, 2008) in Hindustan Times. Please [click here] to read the article before you go on to read my thoughts on this article. Without reading the article, probably my comments wouldn’t make sense.

I would like to bring to your notice two things from this article. Firstly, this article is talking about the disproportionate supply and demand between the families waiting to adopt and the children available to place them in adoption and the consequent logic not to promote the message of adoption in India.

I don’t disagree with the article totally because there seems to be adequate amount of blanket publicity lately on the message of adoption in India. This has enabled families to consider adoption as an option. But has this publicity helped all the children? Do we not have any children to place in homes at all?

This is where I have an issue. Many Indian families are coming forward but with conditions for a custom made baby. What about older children and children with special needs? Many children that are born with the physical disabilities and are in the adoption stream probably will never see the light of day to live in a family. Whose fault is it that they are born that way and who should be advocating for them?

This above question brings me to the second point and that is the available alternatives for unavailable domestic adoptive families. When a child cannot be placed in a domestic family for whatever the reasons, is inter-country adoption the only option left? Have we ever explored to understand the reasons behind why some children (for example children with special needs and older children) don’t get adopted within the country?

I don’t think India is short of families for any kind of child to have a home but as long as we don’t venture out to understand the ways to identify the families and their needs, one’s horizon of alternatives are going to be as limited as “inter-country” adoption.

I agree that this country may not need any more blanket publicity of adoption but the need of the hour is to promote issue based message of adoption. Issues of adoption range from older children, children with special needs, adoption affordability, and adoption services etc.

India has the mandated responsibility as a signatory of UNCRC (United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child) to find domestic family by exploring all the avenues that are at our disposal before placing children for inter-country adoption.

Ruby

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