This morning, a routine check of one of my favorite sites, Guatemala 900, produced the following breaking information:
Guatemalan officials on Friday announced the resumption of international adoptions after a nearly two-year suspension prompted by the discovery that some babies were being sold. Legal reforms established during the suspension will prevent problems in the future, according to the National Adoption Council, which said in a statement on its Web page that it will start a pilot program involving four countries. The Council did not say when the program would start or which countries would be involved. . . .Last year, the National Adoptions Council began requiring birth mothers to personally verify they still wanted to give up their children. Nearly 1,000 of 3,032 cases were dismissed, however, because no birth mother showed up. Prosecutors suspect many of the babies in those cases never existed – that Guatemalan baby brokers registered false identities with the council in hopes of matching them later to babies obtained through fraud. (Complete article here.)
Suffice to say, this is big news in the Guatemalan adoption world. Please read the text carefully, though: it will start off as a pilot program involving four unspecified (at this time) countries and there is no set start date at this time. Still, this is a start to a reformed program for Guatemalan adoptions and that is excellent news to uncover as the holiday season begins to swing into full effect. Speaking again of Guatemala 900, three new campaigns have been announced, one of which involves UNICEF. You can read more here.
In other Guatemala-related news, Guatadopt’s 2010 calendar is available for purchase. It looks fantastic! Of course, it’s covered with a legion of positively beautiful children, so how could it be any less than amazing? For information and how to order, click here. Kevin (of Guatadopt) is aware of technical issues that arise when trying to order from the Do-Good site so please stay patient and persistent. Is your child a part of this year’s calendar? Beauty’s picture (as posted here) is included on the back cover with a ton of other gorgeous kids. The preview for all months–including the front and back cover–is now posted on the Guatadopt site. The ordering window is brief–as it stands, November 30 is the cut off date–so please keep an eye on the site so you don’t miss this opportunity.
The last part of this multifaceted post is a question for the readers of this blog: what Guatemala sites/charities do you visit (or donate to) on the regular? How do you and your family give back to Guatemala during the holiday season (or throughout the year)? Please comment or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d love to compile a post with suggestions and links at some point during the month of December. Happy Thanksgiving to all those celebrating on Thursday!
Photo Credit: 2009 Courtney O.