Top 10 Myths About Adopting from the Philippines

If you or someone you know has been considering adoption from the Philippines, you may have heard some common misconceptions about the adoption process. Below, we highlight the top 10 myths about adopting a child from the Philippines, and provide some useful insight as you consider this program!

Myth #1: There isn’t much information available about children waiting to be adopted from the Philippines.

Fact: Holt receives very detailed family background, behavioral, developmental and social information about children waiting to be adopted from the Philippines.

Myth #2: I’ll be matched with a child I’m not equipped to parent.

Fact: The child-matching process through the Philippines, and all of Holt’s country programs, is very specific to each child and family! Each family’s profile is carefully reviewed by the Intercountry Adoption Board — the central authority in the Philippines — before they are matched with a child or sibling group. Once a family’s profile has been reviewed, it takes approximately 3-4 years for them to receive a referral for a child. However, the wait time for a match is largely dependent on the profile of child that you are open to. Families will receive photos of the child as well as the Child Study Report, which tells how the child came into care, family history, why international adoption is the best route for them to have a family, developmental information and a health and medical profile. Families are able to review the information they’ve been given with a medical professional before making a formal decision.

friends playing in the Philippines

Myth #3: The timeline for adopting from the Philippines is long — always 4-5.5 years.

Fact: For waiting children, which includes young children with moderate to major special needs, older children and sibling groups, the wait is not always as long. Families who choose to adopt from the special home-finding list experience shorter wait times and can usually bring their child home within one to two years from time of adoption application.

Myth #4: All adoption agencies are the same.

Fact: Holt is unique because we have been active in the Philippines for over 40 years through our partner agency, Kaisahang Buhay Foundation (KBF), which we helped found in 1976.  As of 2022, Holt has placed over 1000 children from the Philippines with loving adoptive families in the U.S. And in addition to adoption services, Holt has robust orphan care and family strengthening programs in the country. 

Myth #5: The adoption timeline from the Philippines is unclear and confusing.

Fact: We strive for complete transparency at each step of the adoption process. Every step, from application to placement, can be found on Holt’s Philippines Adoption page. Or if you want more specific information you can always contact one of our adoption advisors at [email protected].

Adopt from the Philippines.

Myth #6: Only married couples can adopt from the Philippines.

Fact: Single applicants can also adopt from the Philippines! They are eligible to adopt from the special home-finding list for older children, sibling groups and young children with moderate to major special needs.

Myth #7: I will spend an extended amount of time in the Philippines before my child comes home.

Fact: Unlike other programs where parents spend approximately two to five weeks in their child’s home country, the Philippines only requires parents to stay for five business days in country. Only one parent is required to travel, although both parents traveling is preferred.

Myth #8: Children adopted from the Philippines don’t speak English.

Fact: Most of the children waiting to be adopted have been exposed to at least some English, though it varies depending on the childcare agency. Older children have some English-speaking skills and have been through a special adoption preparation program.

Myth #9: Families can select their child’s gender.

Fact: Families cannot select a gender if they adopt through the standard program. However, if families choose to adopt through the special home-finding list, they can choose their child’s gender.

Myth #10: Communication with Holt ends after my child is home.

Fact: Not only does Holt go above and beyond to provide education, resources and preparation throughout your adoption process, we also provide your family with valuable post-adoption services. From adoptee camps and family support groups to counseling and citizenship questions, we stand by you and your family for life!

Gril smiles for photo in the Philippines


Adopt From the Philippines

Many children in the Philippines are waiting for a loving, permanent family.

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