One of our field partner orphanages in South India has a waiting list of Indian families that want to adopt a baby girl. Each week the orphanage is also called by infant cradles asking them if they have room for an unwanted newborn baby girl. Most times the director must tell them “at this time we can not accept anymore babies.”
How can this be and yet so many girl babies are aborted, killed or neglected in India each year?
I believe the root problem is government regulation. Think Slum Dog Millionaire – the movie about the horrific conditions in orphanages and how evil men abuse, mutilate and sell children for personal profit.
This is the reality in some orphanages in India. So, the government attempted to restrict the “financial gain” an orphanage could make from caring for an orphan child. Problem is, this has a direct impact on great orphanages all over India.
The government has limited the adoption fee to approximately $100 USD even when the adoptive parents are willing and able to pay more. The challenge. It cost an orphanage about $500 to rescue and care for a newborn child for six months. Add the costs to evaluate and educate potential adoptive Indian parents and the orphanage is loosing money on every child they adopt.
It does not matter whether you are a for profit or non profit. You can not “keep your doors open” if you are loosing money.
This is why good and reputable orphanage – many with a waiting list for baby girl adoptions must tell the infant cradles they can not take another newborn baby girl.
Yes, the laws in India need to be modified so good is able to do more good. But in the short-term, The Rhema Project is looking into ways we can help cover the financial gap.
It also allows us to uphold one of our core principles – We must help Indians own the solution to end the genocide of baby girls in their country You see, the estimated cost to rescue, care, clothe, educate and fund a small dowry for an orphaned girl over a 20 year period is at least $15,000. For $500 we can do the same plus have her loved and cared for by an Indian adopted family.
Just think what might happen if all over America families decided that this holiday season they could be part of giving the greatest gift ever to another family 9,000 miles away!