"He took the little child and had him stand among them. Taking him in his arms, he said to them, “Whoever welcomes one of these little children in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me does not welcome me but the one who sent me.” ~Mark 9:36-37~
LMI is fully accredited by the COA to place children and work in the Hague sending countries such as Bulgaria.
We are pleased to present "Why Bulgaria?", a teleconference for families considering adopting from Bulgaria. This teleconference is held monthly. The seminar will include an overview of the Bulgarian adoption process, information about the children, the the paperwork stages, referral and realistic expectations.
3/24/08 ANNOUNCEMENT: BULGARIA PROGRAM REOPENS!!!
LMI's Bulgaria program has reopened and we are immediately accepting families and dossiers for this program.
Children are available for adoption by a non-Bulgarian family or person starting at ages 18 months to age 15. The government office responsible for adoptions in Bulgaria is the Ministry of Justice. The children are placed on a centralized data bank, and released for referral internationally by the Ministry of Justice. The available children live in different regions, in orphanages, with coordinators or attorneys to assist you in each region. The ethnic background of most of the children available is Bulgarian, however, the children are of mixed ancestry. Ethnic origin makes a difference in the cases in Bulgaria. For example, children that are considered Gypsy (Roma) or Turkish children are not likely to be adopted by Bulgarian families because they are considered minority. Many of those children have an olive complexion, brown eyes, and dark brown or black hair. Caucasian children are also available. Families may not voice a preference in ethnic background. The birth parents of the children who are available for adoption have either signed over their parental rights or the court has terminated these rights. Sibling groups are quite common in Bulgaria. When sibling groups are available, most likely they will be of the ages 3 and up, the older sibling groups being much more common. The children are generally healthy, with the exception of having minor correctable medical and developmental needs. Typical orphanage delays are expected. There are some children with more complicated medical special needs available too, and occasionally we will have waiting special needs children that need a little extra help finding a family.
ADOPTIVE PARENT CRITERIA
Little Miracles International accepts parents between the ages of 25 and up. Adoptive parents over 45 can adopt a child 3 and up. Single women can qualify. There is currently no upper age limit, however cases are looked at individually. It would not be typical, for example, for an older person to adopt a toddler. This is not to say the Ministry and Court has never allowed it. They prefer for there to be only 45 years difference between the parent and child. The family must meet United States Immigration requirements as well as provide a complete dossier of paperwork to Bulgarian officials. Little Miracles International will assist you in your paperchase, home study procedures and dossier preparation.
Both parents, or one if single, must travel to Bulgaria and on to the region where the child resides. The first trip will be the trip where you first meet the child then sign the commitment forms. Typically it takes 4-6 months to get your child home after the first referral trip. There are many orphanages in Sofia, the Capital of Bulgaria. You may possibly be referred a child outside of the city and you will travel to meet the child where he/she resides. No Visa is required for travel to Bulgaria.
* THE FIRST TRIP
The trip is shortly after you have committed to adopting the child and accepted referral. You will travel to Bulgaria for a short trip of 5-6 days. Weekend travel is possible with many of the attorneys and Orphanage Directors. During this time, the parent or parents will visit the child and also sign the Intent to Adopt paperwork in front of a notary in Bulgaria.
* THE SECOND TRIP
Once the adoption has completed overseas and the passport for the child has been obtained, you will be notified to travel. You will visit the embassy and medical clinic on this trip with your child. Typically this trip is less than a week in duration. There is a possibility of the child being escorted home for this trip. We prefer at least one parent travel to pick up the child, however we will consider escort on a case by case basis.
Once the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) receives the application and dossier of the family, the documents will be registered. The MOJ right now has a number of dossiers in queue and is taking much longer.
The wait times for referral are variable, and no set pattern has been determined to date. The MOJ will give priority to families requesting older and special needs children. The wait for referral is determined by a number of factors, and each adoption case will depend on these factors to determine the unique wait time for each case:
Age of Child Requested
Gender of Child Requested
Special and Medical Needs the Family Will Accept
The Registry Date of Dossier with the MOJ (the date the official wait starts)
You will receive a photo, medical. You will have a month to accept this referral. If you accept a child this child will be put on "hold". This means that the child is not available to anyone else while all of the paperwork is being processed.
Fees schedules are set to where Parents pay in increments, so all fees are not due at once. Application, Registration, Agency and Commitment Fees are non-refundable. All fees are paid in US dollars but converted to Euros. The fees for the program are outlined in Euros.
BULGARIAN PROGRAM DOSSIER
The dossier guide you will be given later will give you detailed instructions as to what documents are necessary to adopt in Bulgaria. Each document must be notarized and bear an Apostille.
HISTORY OF LITTLE MIRACLES IN BULGARIA
On June 4, 2004 Little Miracles International, Inc. Bulgaria was awarded full Accreditation License in Bulgaria. This license was awarded to only three US agencies to date. Two years later, Bulgarian authorities still were too slow with the processing of dossiers and very few families were coming home with children so we could not justify our keeping offices open in Sofia, however, we will continue to work in Bulgaria through the same attorney that we had worked with previously. We are working with some amazing and experienced attorneys all of whom have been hand selected and we are privileged to call friends!
To request information on our Bulgaria Adoption Program please fill out our online INFO REQUEST FORM.
SOME HISTORY AND CULTURE OF BULGARIA
Bulgaria is situated in south-eastern Europe, in the north-eastern part of the Balkan Peninsula. Countries neighboring Bulgaria are: Greece, Macedonia, Romania and Serbia.
Under Todor Zhivkov, Bulgaria's leader from 1954 to 1989, the country became one of the most prosperous in Eastern Europe, with farmers allowed to till small private plots and industrial growth eventually contributing to over half the gross national product. The collapse of communism in 1989 left industry exposed, and the transition to democracy has been a troubled one. The renamed communist party (now the Bulgarian Socialist Party) managed to control the direction of newly democratic Bulgaria, restricting the influence of the president to troubled noises. In June 2001, the Bulgarian monarchy made an unprecedented comeback when former king Simeon II was elected prime minister. Rapid inflation, high unemployment, the lack of a social safety net and the visible wealth of sanctioned criminals have caused widespread disillusionment. Progress, plodding beast that it is, continues under President Petar Stoyanov, and the government is eager to qualify for membership in NATO and the EU.
But what the visitor encounters now is a country struggling valiantly to adapt and people who remain remarkably hospitable in the face of social and economic chaos. Urban Bulgaria, especially Sofia, is much changed. In the villages, though, you can still find folk who drive the donkey to work and eat homegrown potatoes and home-milked cheese. The difference is that they settle down for an evening in front of the satellite TV.
Bulgaria has a temperate climate, with cold damp winters and hot dry summers. Sofia has average daily temperatures above 15°C (59°F) from May to September, above 11°C (51.8°F) in April and October, above 5°C (41°F) in March and November, and below freezing in December and January.
The Bulgarian language is a South Slavic language written in the Cyrillic alphabet. Saints Cyril and Methodius, two brothers from Thessaloniki, invented the Cyrillic script in the 9th century and one of the strong bonds between Bulgarians and Russians is their shared use of this alphabet. Russian is the second language of older Bulgarians and is still taught in schools. Younger people are more likely to be interested in speaking a version of English peppered with classic rock lyrics and advertising slogans. Bulgarians waggle their heads Indian-style to mean yes, and nod to mean no.
Bulgarians fill up on meals of meat, potatoes and beans, crisped up with salads. Breakfast is a bread-based snack on the run. Bread is the most important mainstay of the Bulgarian diet.
Songs have accompanied the Bulgarians during workdays and holidays, in periods of historical upsurge and in times of trial, in joy and sorrow. The paradox that the Bulgarian sings when in sorrow is not accidental. Traditional Bulgarian music includes folk songs and choral plain chants in the Greek mode for church services. The chief native musical instruments are the gaida (bagpipe) and the kaval (a wooden shepherd's flute). The characteristic folk dances are variations of the hora, a round chain dance, and the ruchenitsa, a lively dance of two couples.
Full country name: Republic of Bulgaria
Area: 110,912 sq km
Population: 8.3 million
Capital city: Sofia (pop 1.1 million)
People: 85% Bulgarian, 8.5% Turkish, 2.6% Roma, 2.5% Macedonian
Language: Bulgarian. Turkish and Romany are spoken by minorities.
Religion: 85% Bulgarian Orthodox, 13% Muslim
Major industries: Food processing, machine and metal building, electronics, chemicals, textiles, ferrous and nonferrous metals
To request information on our Bulgaria Adoption Program please fill out our online INFO REQUEST FORM.