International Adoption Not Affected By President’s Immigration Ban

Since April 22, we have heard from a number of families concerned about President Trump’s executive order suspending immigration to the U.S. during the economic recovery period following the COVID-19 pandemic.

Holt has now received confirmation that this suspension does not apply to immigration via international adoption. Children can still travel home to the U.S. with their adoptive families, and international adoptions can move forward without delay. Continue reading “International Adoption Not Affected By President’s Immigration Ban”

Just Look at These Smiles: Photos From International Day of the Child 2019

Every year on June 1, the International Day of the Child, Holt sponsors and donors help throw a massive party for children in our programs around the world! For children who have so little — children living in poverty with their families or in orphanages or foster homes without a family of their own — your generous gifts create a day of abundance, laughter, silliness and fun.

Just look at the smiles on the faces of these kids at last year’s parties… YOU made this happen. You have a beautiful heart, and we’re so grateful for you.

Continue reading “Just Look at These Smiles: Photos From International Day of the Child 2019”

Sutton Needs a Family!

Sutton is almost 2 years old, and a pretty sweet little guy.

He offers his hand right away when someone says “high five” and his other favorite word that gets his attention is “snacks”! He also loves to play peekaboo and watch cartoons.

He was born full-term and weighed 9.7 pounds at birth. His prenatal history includes alcohol exposure, and at his most recently well-baby check he showed some developmental delays.

While he hasn’t had a checkup since January 2020 because of the coronavirus, he has remained healthy and is doing well!

Sutton needs a family that is comfortable with unknowns in his development and one that can provide him with whatever therapies and resources he needs as he grows up.

To learn more about Sutton, please email us at

One Mom’s Bulgaria Adoption Story

One adoptive mom shares what it was like adopting her son through Holt’s Bulgaria program nine years ago. Holt recently reopened an adoption program from Bulgaria.

November 2008 began a journey in our hearts and lives that would forever change us. God put an unmistakable burden on our heart to adopt. We didn’t know more than that we were to take a step of faith and start the adoption process.  We always thought we would have two sons. At the time, we had three children — one boy and two girls.

Continue reading “One Mom’s Bulgaria Adoption Story”

Thankful for Silver Linings

Last year, while grieving the loss of her mom, adoptee Lee Henggeler discovered a box of adoption paperwork that helped her reconnect with her mom through the journey she took to become a mother. It also sparked an idea for a journey she herself would take to honor her late mom. This story originally appeared on Lee’s blog,

Lee and her mom when Lee was a baby.

Deep loss can bring you face to face with what was missing when you thought you had everything …

(written February 4, 2020)

On April 2, 2019 at 9:24 pm, a woman I had never met called to tell me my mom was dead. My husband, 4-year-old and I were driving on I-95, all our belongings in a moving truck, less than an hour from Charleston, SC — uprooting and relocating after eight years in Washington, D.C. to spend more time with Grama CeeCee. But just like that *snap* she was gone, and with her all of the time we had every intention of spending — and there was nothing we could do. Continue reading “Thankful for Silver Linings”

Connected Parenting During COVID-19

A message to adoptive families from Holt’s clinical services team. 

During these times, we are being bombarded by recommendations geared towards keeping up with our children’s academic needs. Such recommendations, while important, often leave out the essential task of prioritizing connection and self-care.

Our children need connected/supportive parenting now more than ever, and providing this approach should be our top priority.

Why is this important?

Continue reading “Connected Parenting During COVID-19”

Holt’s Work Continues Amid the Coronavirus Pandemic

Over the past several weeks, Holt International, like all organizations, has experienced the consequences of the coronavirus outbreak and the critical impact on our programs, our staff and partners, and the children and families we serve together with you around the world. As the world watched what was happening in China, this felt very personal to Holt. With the health and safety of both children and families our utmost concern, we made the heart-wrenching decision to suspend travel for more than 20 adoptive families who were ready to bring their children home. In both the U.S. and China, Holt staff responded quickly to support and assist families and took immediate measures to ensure our partner orphanages had the medical and other supplies needed to protect the children in their care.

When the virus began to spread to Korea and other countries where we work in Asia, we took immediate action — sending masks and other supplies to our partners in those countries. Thankfully, as of today, we have received no reports of any children in our programs contracting the virus, and we continue to pray for the health and safety of all children, families, staff, partners and supporters around the world. Continue reading “Holt’s Work Continues Amid the Coronavirus Pandemic”

Intercountry Adoption Becomes More Precarious As Coronavirus Outbreak Grows

Holt International Expands Support to Orphanages Across Asia as they Reassure Adoptive Families Waiting to Bring Their Children Home.

EUGENE, ORE – Holt International is rapidly ramping up its support for orphanages in Asia that are at risk of the expanding coronavirus outbreak. It also is working closely with 250 U.S. families in the queue to adopt children from China, including more than 20 families whose adoptions have been delayed by the outbreak.

“The families have been amazing in their understanding of the situation. It is not easy for them, but they realize it is a situation beyond anyone’s control,” says Jian Chen, Holt’s vice president of China regional programs. “We are all worried about the health and safety of the children in orphanages in China, but we are pleased with the quick response of Chinese authorities to isolate the children immediately. The caregivers in the orphanages have also been isolated with the children to continue to provide 24-hour care for them.”

Continue reading “Intercountry Adoption Becomes More Precarious As Coronavirus Outbreak Grows”

Why International Adoption is Still Needed

Until we live in a world where every child can grow up safe and loved  in a permanent, loving family, Holt will continue to provide and advocate for ethical, child-centered international adoption. 

Late last month, our fellow U.S. adoption agency Bethany Christian Services announced their decision not to renew their international adoption accreditation when it expires at the end of March 2021. In a blog post, their vice president of global programs, Kristi Gleason, shared how they prayerfully came to this decision after nearly 40 years of helping children come home to families through international adoption.

“The future of adoption is working with local governments, churches, and social services professionals around the world to recruit and support local families for children and to develop and improve effective, safe in-country child welfare systems,” Gleason wrote. Continue reading “Why International Adoption is Still Needed”