They closed shop, taking our deposit with them, without notice, without contact, without a word. Crooks!
My role is actually ex-client not served, and I had to give them 1 star, I do not think they deserve any.
My husband and decided to add to our family of 2 adopted children by adopting 2 more. My husband had diabetes, and I have depression which I take medication for, we knew some countries would not allow us to adopt.
In early 2010 after extensive phone discussions with the former Director of this agency many of which were specifically around the issue of the diabetes and depression and this Director consulting with their facilitator in Ukraine we were told it would be no problem to adopt from there. We sent in our application which clearly states on it that my husband has diabetes and I have depression and signed the contract with this agency in March 2010. That same Director also assured us it would be no problem to get 2 children under 5 years old without health problems and we would have children in time for Christmas.
We found a WI social worker this agency approved of and on May 21st she e-mailed a rough draft of our home study to the social worker at this agency. There were a few changes that needed to be made and on June 24th it was ready to be sent for apostille. Just before sending it we were told by SWAF that we needed copies of our social workers license and the license of the agency she worked for apostille too. This caused a 3 week delay in getting our home study done and apostille, to find out the copies of the licenses were not needed! On July 17th i was set to over night our home study to the agency when we received a phone call that the last page of our home study had to be redone. Then my husband received a phone call from the facilitator in Ukraine urging us to up the ages of children we would accept and say we would take three. We did not have an issue adopting 3 it was the ages that scared us and one of the reasons we went with this agency was because right in their info brochure it stated:
"Children between the ages of 8 months and five years are available for adoption thru Small World. The Foundation does not generally facilitate placements for children beyond five years of age. Our experience has been that the families who adopted children beyond the age of five years often encountered frequent and intense adjustment and bonding difficulties, with intense behavior problems. These problems create significant difficulties for both the adopting family and the child. On the application, clients may select an age range; eight to eighteen months, nineteen to thirty-six months, or thirty-six months to sixty months."
We agonized about it for a week and decided we would go up to 6 years old. Finally August 26, 2010 our home study got registered in Ukraine and we received our official submission date of March 31, 2011! We were not happy but waited out the summer, fall and winter.
Finally it was time to assemble our dossier and send it over for our official submission. On March 4th with almost all of our documents ready to go we scanned our medical statements to the facilitator in Ukraine to make sure they were in the right format. On March 6th after several e-mails back and forth with Ukraine about my depression diagnosis I was e-mailed that due to my depression I could not adopt, and if we wanted the facilitator to proceed with translation of our dossier he needed money from us.
I was crushed we had been honest from the start not only with the former Director, facilitator in Ukraine but also the Executive Director SWAF. My husband Skyped the facilitator in Ukraine and the facilitator swore he never spoke about it with my husband and when my husband insisted he had the facilitator asked my husband if he had it in writing that they had spoken about it and my husband said no the facilitator called my husband a liar. SWAF gave us two choices to fix the situation, get my Dr. to change my medical form (illegal) or we could redo paper work and my husband could adopt as a single parent.
After considering my husband adopting as a single parent we decided that at this point we had lost all confidence in SWAF and the facilitator in Ukraine not to mention that the facilitator in the Ukraine now made us uncomfortable with how he had treated the whole situation. We did not want to go thousands of miles to a foreign country without total confidence and trust in our facilitator.
Just when we could see the end, when we could see travel and children in sight we lost it all, without cause on our part. Now came the hardest part explaining to our two children why we could not adopt after all of this time. That all of their excitement to help decorate and get ready for siblings was now not going to happen.
Review from Guidestar