It is a very small program that's opening, nothing like the one that closed in 2008. Much smaller and much different. The new program only has 2 agencies, Dillon and Holt, in my opinion both agencies are highly respected with a LONG history of transparency. Holt was our agency that we adopted Mimi through, and we highly highly recommend them. (Did I mention we highly recommend Holt?) The US DOS had previously announced that this program will only be placing "children with special needs, children aged five and older, and children in biological sibling groups." A link to the US DOS announcement about the type of children the program will place is here.
I have mixed feelings about the Vietnam program reopening. I'm happy, but I'm scared at the same time. It brings back a flood bad memories of a very tough time for us. In my mind, I'm hoping this new program will be a successful test to see if the program is stable and transparent enough to get bigger, especially since I've seen the need personally first hand. I pray it is! After our stay at the Vietnam orphanage this summer, I'm often find myself sad that any of these amazing children can't have what they deserve; a family to call their own forever and ever. Don't get me wrong, the children in orphanages that I've personally seen, and surely the vast majority of orphanages in Vietnam (and the world) are loved on by their caregivers with all they have. But growing up, even with love, in institutionalized care will never ever be the same as a forever family. Not to mention that these children aren't growing up in with their first family, the best case scenario of all! And that just makes me sad all the way around.
But what happened in Vietnam with our adoptions in 2008, still haunts me. How can it not when my children still bare the scares... figuratively AND literally bare scars. It was one of the toughest things in my life to go through. Sometimes folks ask me to compare the Vietnam adoption process with our China adoption. Well... the China adoption was comparitively smooth sailing and easy! We knew our Chinese daughter would come home! We had absolutely no idea if our Vietnamese children, our Tess and Jude, would come home back in 2008. We were threatened, (and I'm not using that word lightly) that they might not come home, but grow up in an orphanage. It felt as if someone had a vendetta out against us during that process... wait... someone kinda did! But I digress.
***the photos here are of the amazing, gorgeous, sweet, smart, perfectly-made children at St, An's Orphanage in Vietnam.