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What It Means to Adopt a Child with Down Syndrome

In the countries where we work, many children with Down syndrome are waiting for loving adoptive families.

However, Down syndrome is not as embraced and supported in some countries as it is in the United States. People with Down syndrome often go without access to special education, therapies or other resources that they need to reach their full potential. While we always strive to find a loving adoptive family in a child’s birth country first, for many children with Down syndrome, international adoption is the best route to a permanent, loving family. If an adoptive family does not come forward in the birth country, children with Down syndrome become eligible to join a family through international adoption.

For some families, like the Hostetters and Presnell-Sekulas, the idea of special needs adoption was new territory. But they chose to push aside fears, worries and uncertainties and moved forward in trust and faith. For other families like the Butchers and single mom Sara Croasdaile, who adopted two children with Down syndrome, they knew they wanted to adopt a child with special needs from the beginning of the adoption process.

Each of these families has a different background. Some have experience with special needs and some none at all, and all of their adoption journeys are different. But each one is full of positive change, joy, patience and love.

Grants are available for eligible children with special needs through our Families Not Finances campaign. Learn more about the campaign here.

adoptive mother and father holding daughters adopted from China

Children with special needs are waiting for families!

Meet some of the children waiting for loving adoptive families. Could you be the right family for one of these children?

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