Philip Hayden Foundation

Help us find Forever Families

Orphans Who Wait

There are thousands of orphans in China who are eligible for adoption. Most continue to wait for a forever family. Right now, over 96% of the orphans in Child Welfare Institutes have disabilities. In most cases, parents wanted and loved these children. However, access to healthcare in China is still challenging for most families. Abandonment was the best way, maybe the only way, for their child to get the medical care they need to survive.

Over the past ten years, both China and the US have adjusted their international adoption policies. In great part, these changes are designed to protect the children. But the number of children adopted in the US from China has dropped from nearly 8000 in 2005 to just 2200 in 2016. In the same ten years, the number of children adopted by families in China has tripled. Now over 25,000 Chinese orphans join Chinese families each year. Most of the orphans adopted by Chinese families in China are very young or have minor disabilities. Orphans over the age of 5 or with more significant health needs still continue to wait to join families.

The process to adopt is long and difficult for most adoptions. It is especially demanding for international adoption. Many call the process “the labor of the heart” — exhausting, but so worth it! The Hague Adoption Convention is an international pact. It makes adoption between countries safer for children and families by tightening the documentation and approval processes. But it also increases the costs and time to complete adoptions. International adoption worldwide has dropped nearly 70% in the last ten years. And yet children still wait.

Belonging. Value. Hope.

A family provides a sense of belonging, crucial to long term flourishing and relating to others. Adoption of an older child or one with disabilities requires a huge investment of emotional, physical, and financial resources. A child thrives in an environment where they are loved and valued. Adopting an orphan with disabilities can be seen as rescuing, but as David Platt comments, “…we adopt not because we are rescuers. No. We adopt because we are rescued”. Many families have shared the positive impact adoption brought to their family. Adoption brings hope.

Philip Hayden Foundation is not an adoption agency, but we have a deep love for orphans in China. This love for orphans with disabilities compels us to advocate for forever families for orphans who wait. You may not be able to adopt, but you can still Be The Change.

Be The Change

Consider sharing information about one (or several!) of the kids profiled in our Advocate section or on our Facebook posts. You can encourage a family during the adoption process. Write a heartfelt note, provide a warm dinner, or offer respite care. You can help a family with adoption expenses through agencies, foundations or individual fundraisers. Not sure where to start? Contact us!


Would you Be The Change for our kids who long for a forever family? Read about our kids who wait and share! For more information, contact us.

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