Holt Launches International Adoption Program in South Africa

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Holt is excited to announce the launch of a new international adoption program in South Africa in partnership with the Cape Town, South Africa-based child protection and adoption agency Wandisa.

Holt is now one of three U.S. adoption agencies approved to place children from South Africa with eligible families in the U.S., and began accepting applications for the South Africa program on May 17, 2021.

“We are very excited about this opportunity to participate in home-finding for children from South Africa,” says Thoa Bui, Holt’s vice president of international programs. “We are particularly passionate about being able to find families for children with special needs and older children.”

In South Africa, most children waiting for families are between 2 and 8 years of age and have varying degrees of medical needs. Holt will also actively seek families for sibling groups, older children and children with more involved medical or developmental needs. Most children eligible for adoption from South Africa have experienced some degree of trauma, and families will need to be prepared to parent children with complex needs.

In South Africa, most children waiting for families are between 2 and 8 years of age and have varying degrees of medical needs.

As everywhere, Holt stands committed to ensuring every child in South Africa has the opportunity to remain in the care of their birth family, whenever possible, or to join a family domestically in South Africa before considering international adoption to a family in the U.S. Through Holt’s partnership with Wandisa, birth parents receive options counseling before relinquishing their child for adoption and the possibility of family reunification is thoroughly explored.

“Wandisa is a very well-respected and child-centered organization that shares Holt International’s mission and values around permanency for children in need,” says Bui.

In the coming years, Holt also plans to launch a family strengthening program in South Africa to help parents facing poverty, homelessness and instability receive the tools and resources they need to successfully parent their children — preventing separation and abandonment, and ensuring children can grow and thrive in the loving care of their birth families.

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