Monday, July 24, 2006

The one year mark

It has been one year since we started on this adoption journey. I mailed the application on 7/25/05 to begin the process. 364 days later and we are still in Wait Mode. Although, I have to admit, we knew going into this that a 9 month pregnancy was the blink of an eye compared to international adoption!

To understand what is going on, we have to have a bit of a lesson in Russian governmental practices.

On May 17th our agency, along with about 2/3s of the adoption agencies that do business in Russia, had their licenses expire. This is known as "Accreditation." We knew that timely re-accreditation would be unlikely, as this whole licensing process for the adoption agencies has been a moving target for the past three years.

A week before the expiration date, the Ministry of Justice in Russia handed down a new ruling regarding the licensing that said that the agencies had to all apply for an NGO (non governmental organization) license before they could even reapply for the adoption licenses! Unfortunately, they weren't very clear on what needed to be done, and how, so the agencies are all doing their best to try to submit the right paper work.

Right now the time frame looks like this:
- 7/7/06: Buckner submitted the new paperwork for the NGO (fingers crossed that it is all there, since the guidelines are a bit vague).
-8/7/06: Ministry of Justice has 30 days to review the paperwork and let Buckner know what changes, if any, are needed. Hopefully on or about this date, we will receive notification that Buckner is now an official NGO.
- Mid August: Buckner will submit their paperwork to be Re-Accredited to do adoptions in Russia.
- Mid September: Receive the License and start receiving referrals again.
- October - earliest we would expect to travel to meet our "referral". Spend about one week in Russia visiting with the baby.
- December - return to Russia (can you say cold in Russian?) to attend court - and bring home our new little American. Hopefully just in time for Santa!

So, until then, we simply ask for your prayers - that the paperwork gets approved, that we can have patience, and that our baby-to-be is being loved and cared for the best that he or she can be.