The Adoption Option

Originally posted on 9 July 2009

My wife, Jane, and I adopted a Zulu orphan in July 2005. Since then, we have discovered hundreds of families who have done the same – responding to the tremendous crisis in sub Saharan African, brought on by the AIDS epidemic.

Often, as Christians, we read the Bible selectively. We’re so quick to claim certain promises, and get hot under the collar about certain instructions and commands. But, then, we feel happy completely ignoring others. My wife and I became increasingly convicted about James 1:27, where it is very clear that “religion that is pure and acceptable to God is to take care of widows and orphans…”. That doesn’t mean adoption, of course – there are many ways of taking care of others. In fact, adoption means that we have reduced our impact because our focus is now on only one orphan, rather than the possibility of caring for many. But, religion that is acceptable to God must include significant amounts of social action and social justice.

In May 2008, I spoke at TGIF in Hyde Park, Joahnnesburg, and told the story of my family’s adoption of our third daughter, Rebecca. I told her story, our story, and gave details on the process of adoption in South Africa. For those interested in the story, it was recorded and is available for download as an MP3 file, by right clicking here (select SAVE AS).

8 thoughts on “The Adoption Option”

  1. The original post generated a bit of discussion, including questions on how to go about adopting. We went with a private place of safety, run by an amazing American couple. They are based in Northcliff, Johannesburg, and known as Baby Haven. You can find them online at: http://www.babyhaven.org.

  2. Another contributor, nikkif, offered this advice:

    there are a 2 options as to what adoption route you can take in South Africa.

    1. State
    Adoption Agencies

    Support Group: 011 640 6685

    Major Welfare Adoption Agencies BADISA (CMR);
    11 Pastorie Street, or Private Bag X8, Bellville, 7535
    Tel: 021 957 7130.
    E-mail: [email protected]

    Child Welfare Adoption Centre (formerly at 13 Electric Road, Wynberg, 7800 -associated with Cape Town Child Welfare)
    Lower Klipfontein Road, Gatesville, Athlone, 7764.
    Tel: 021 638 3127

    Catholic Women’s League Adoption Society (011) 618 1533

    Child Welfare Adoption Centre (021) 674 4170

    Johannesburg Welfare (011) 331 0171

    Orange Vrouevereniging Tak (051) 447 1838

    Princess Alice Adoption Home (011) 646 5641/486 1137. Referrals by JHB Welfare

    2. Private Social worker
    There are numerous Private Social workers that currently have approved families on waiting lists to adopt. If you require any further information on this please feel free to let me know.

  3. Hi There

    My husband (42) and I (39) have been trying for the past 8 years to fall pregnant with no success. After our last failed fertility treatment (ICSI in November 2010) we decided that we were done with fertility treatment and would rather want to adopt a baby.

    We have been married just over 8 years and we live on the family farm Rosenburg in Malmesbury. We are a white couple and would love to adopt a white baby. All over we hear the same – the list is closed, so we don’t even have a chance. We both love and adore children.

    Please please can you help us?

    Thanks so much
    Pieter & Izelle van der Westhuijzen

  4. Pieter and Izelle,

    I am not involved in any adoption agencies, so can’t assist you. Unfortunately, though, I think that what you have heard from others is correct. There are no white babies available for adoption (or better said, the lists are closed).

    Would you not consider one of the many coloured or black children who desperately need families?

    Graeme

  5. Hi,

    To the young lady who is pregnant and doesnt know what to do….. please listen to my story and maybe, maybe – we can help each other

    My name Is Lisa and I just lost my 9th child last week . The deaths of my babies hve shattered me beyond description.

    My 9th loss was a perfefectly formed 7 week old foetus (with a little heart- I want to just curl up and dig a hole in the ground when I say this) and died because it was in my tube.

    I nearly lost my life there as well.

    I have come to realise that God maybe has other plans for me – maybe adoption — save my life (emotionally and spiritually) and little life through love and protection and parents and a family.

    I would love toadopt a newborn, caucasion if possible – I know that sounds racist, but it’snot. It’s just the community I live in is a little narrow minded- even a really light skinned child – as my husband is dark skinned.

    We have so much love to give, so much hope and so much joy – I know you see letters like this all the time— but I pray from the bottom of my heart and soul…..

    hear my plea

    Warmest Regards

    Lisa Williams

    084 295 3621

  6. The issues of having children, adoption, pregnancy and losing children, is one of the most heart rending things we have to deal with as human beings. No wonder the Bible reminds us again and again of how God’s heart overflows for His children. God especially desires to protect and care for the vulnerable, weak and small – the children of the world. He calls us to share in this with Him. That’s why ‘religion that is good and acceptable to God is to look after widows and orphans’.

    To all those who feel deep pain around this issue, I pray that you will find peace. There are many agencies that can assist you. Please get in touch with your local church or community workers for more help and assistance in your area.

    Graeme

  7. Hi

    I am a 31 yr old single black lady and I have an 8yr old daughter. I would like to foster or adopt a child newborn to 4yrs old. How do I go about it. I am doing this as i believe that God blessed us so that we can bless others. I love children but I don’t really want to fall pregnant (which I can, if i wanted) I really don’t want to go through that.

    I am based on the North East Side of JHB.

    Can you help

  8. Thulie,

    I would highly recommend that you connect with the wonderful people at http://babyhaven.org/ – they can take you through the process and guide and support you step by step.

    All the best to you as you consider this wonderful opportunity.

    Graeme

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