Inter-Country Adoption is More Than Inter-Country Adoption

Our friends at JCICS shared an article with us published Friday by the Carnegie Council, titled, “Love and Legislation:  The International Politics of Inter-country Adoption,” by Alison Watson.  Overall, it’s a refreshingly thoughtful approach to an often sensationalized topic.   It shortly before the “Step Forward for Orphans” march in Washington, DC that seeks to spur the U.S. government to take a more proactive approach to improving the inter-country adoption system.

One section particularly struck me, affirming how inter-country adoption can often become a catalyst for increased local adoptions within “sending” countries.   This is one more example of a theme we often explore on this blog:  myriad positive ripple effects flow from inter-country adoption.  Far from detracting from other ways of caring for orphans, it helps grow them–from long-term investments by adoptive families in the countries their children came from, to greater engagement in local foster care within churches touched by inter-country adoption.  In “Love and Legislation,” Watson describes:

[I]nter-country adoption can actually help to change the culture of adoption in the adoptees’ native country, so that in the longer term more children are cared for within their own communities. In China, for example, there is now evidence that as the number of inter-country adoptions has increased so has the number of Chinese families willing to consider domestic adoption.

Read the full text of “Love and Legislation” here.