One in ten children die before their first birthday• One in six children die before their fifth birthday• 44% of the population of Ethiopia is under 15 years old• 60% of children in Ethiopia are stunted because of malnutrition• The median age in Ethiopia is 17.8 years• 1.5 million people are infected with AIDS (6th highest in the world)• 720,000 children have been orphaned by AIDS alone, and there are 4.6 million orphans in Ethiopia.• Per capita, Ethiopia receives less aid than any country in Africa• In the 90s the population (3%) grew faster than food production (2.2%)• Drought struck the country from 2000-2002 (first year no crops, second year no seeds, third year no animals)• Half the children in Ethiopia will never attend school. 88% will never attend secondary school.• Coffee prices (Ethiopia’s only major export) fell 40-60% from 1998-2002.• Ethiopia’s doctor to children ratio is 1 to 24,000.• In 1993, after 30 long years of war, Eritrea broke from Ethiopia and became an independent nation leaving Ethiopia landlocked without any major seafaring ports.
1/4/07 - Sent Gladney application request and I600A Application
1/11/07 - Sent out requests for birth certificates, marriage certificates, employment letter, proof of health and life insurance, bank letter, reference letters, prepared "Why we want to adopt" and homemaker letters, financial statement. Got color pictures of our passports and gathered pictures of our family, house and yard. Sent Connecticut Criminal History report and Dept of Children & Family Background check requests.
1/20/07 Sent Gladney application & fees, FBI background check, Home Study application (JFS in Bridgeport, CT). Notarized "Why we want to adopt letter", employment letter, homemaker letter, financial statement, passport copies, power of attorney.
1/21/07 - Received Heidi's birth certificate
1/22/07 - Received letter from USCIS saying they received our application and instructing us to have our fingerprints taken in Hartford.
1/23/07 - John's physical & receipt of notarized health form
1/25/07 - Received John's birth certificate
1/26/07 - Received a letter stating our proof of life insurance from the insurance company, but they woudn't notarize it.
1/27/07 - Received notarized bank letter
1/28/07 - Received 1st notarized reference letter
1/30/07 - Received Connecticut Criminal History report and Dept of Children & Family Background checks.
2/1/07 - Received FBI clearance packages
2/2/07 - Received a notarized letter from our insurance agent (NOT insurance company - they wouldn't do it) for proof of life insurance
2/9/07 - Heidi's fingerprints taken
2/10/07 - Received marriage certificate
2/16/07 - Received Dept of Children and Families background check
2/21/07 - First home study interview with Barbara Paris of JFS in Bridgeport, CT
3/2/07 - Home study home visit
3/3/07 - Received 2nd notarized reference letter
3/7/07 - Final home study interview, Notarized FBI letters, received 3rd notarized reference letter, sent KBS Dossiers the first package of dossier papers.
3/9/07 - Heidi's physical & receipt of notarized health form
3/20/07 - Received a proof of insurance letter from our health insurance company, but since they woudn't notarize it, we just had John's firm write and notarize a letter.
3/31/07 - John's fingerprints taken
4/26/07 - Received redo letter of proof of life insurance (the letter dated 2/2/07 wasn't properly notarized)
4/27/07 - Home study complete!
5/3/07 - Officially Gladney approved!!!!
5/15/07 - Received approval from USCIS (I-797C)
5/17/07 - Notarized CIS Approval letter - this was the last thing we needed to do with the paperwork before the official waiting starts!
5/29/07 - Dossier complete!!! Fully authenticated by the amazing Kate Sproat and sent to DC for final authentication.
5/29/07 - We are OFFICIALLY WAITING!!
6/8/07 - Dossier delivered to Belay, Gladey's representative in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
7/12/07 - Scrambled to get new passport photos b/c somehow the US Embassy in Ethiopia lost them - ugh!
7/21/07 - Signed and sent Gladney the PCR form (indicating how many HIV tests you require of the child before receiving a referral)
8/2/07 - RECEIVED REFERRALL!!
8/7/07 - Officially accepted referral
8/27/07 - Official Ethiopian adoption date - SHE'S OURS!!!
9/17/07 - Fly to Ethiopia
9/19/07 - Meet Sophie Yordanos!
9/24/07 - Forever Home
12/4/07 - Adoption officially validated in Connecticut
We are a family of six living in Connecticut. We brought our youngest daughter home from Ethiopia in September 2007 and have not stopped thinking about how we can help improve the lives of the amazing Ethiopian people since. We are so lucky to have met an ever-growing community of Ethiopian adoptive families that have given their hearts and souls back to Ethiopia. We look forward to sharing this journey back to Ethiopia with you and hope that you can help us help Ethiopia Smile!