We are honored to help some of the orphans of Colombia find their forever families! Matching waiting children is a priority for adoption officials in Colombia. Our partner agency regularly shares the files of waiting children with CAS for our Waiting Child Photolisting.
Colombia Adoption Overview
Program Coordinator: Angela Jackson
Children Available: Children 9 years and older who are considered healthy, older sibling groups, and children of all ages with special needs. Colombia maintains a list of Special Characteristics which officials use to determine eligibility of a child under 9 for international adoption.
Colombia Adoption Parent Requirements: Married couples or singles, age 25 and older
Colombia Adoption Travel Requirements: One trip of 5 to 8 weeks
Typical Colombia Adoption Timeline:
a. 4 to 6 months from dossier approval to match to a child
b. 3 to 4 months from match to a child to travel to Colombia
Families with Colombian Heritage
If you are of Colombian heritage, you may apply to adopt a younger child, and you may also qualify for a reduction in fees.
If a Colombian family wishes to adopt a younger child who is considered healthy, the age guidelines are as follows:
Parents 25-40 years old would be considered for children 0-2 years old (0-35 months)
Parents 41-45 years old would be considered for children 3-4 years old (35-59 months)
Parents 46-50 years old would be considered for children 5-6 years old (60-83 months)
Parents 51-54 years old would be considered for children 7-8 years old (84-107 months)
Parents 55-65 years old would be considered for children 10 and older
More Details: Colombia Adoption with Carolina Adoption Services
Colombia has nearly one million orphans. These children mirror the diverse cultures seen in the main population, who are Mestizo, European, Afro-Colombian, and Indian. All children in orphanages who are old enough to go to school attend regular school within their community.
Our Colombia Adoption Program & Process
The first step for prospective parents is to complete a homestudy and obtain immigration approval. These documents will become part of your dossier, which is required by the Colombian Central Authority (ICBF).
Once your dossier is submitted, it takes approximately 2 to 3 months for translation into Spanish and approval by ICBF. It is not uncommon for ICBF to request additional information or clarification on documents.
Once approved, ICBF will present a prospective child for adoption to you. When you accept the child, you must file the necessary immigration forms with the USCIS and wait for approval, which typically takes 3 to 4 months.
Colombia Adoption Travel: What to Expect
Adoptive parents make one trip to Colombia after they have adoption approval. How long parents stay in Colombia depends on which region of the country that their child lives in. For example, Bogota requires a 5 to 8 week stay; Medellin and Cali require a 5 to 7 week stay. With married couples, regardless of the region, one spouse may leave after the first 10 days, approximately.
During your trip, in-country representatives meet you at the airport and escort you to all administrative, legal and judicial procedures. Parents generally arrive a few days before “Encuentro Day” (child meeting day), and the child joins you from that day on of your travels.
After 7 to 10 days of bonding, parents have an interview with ICBF. Following the interview, ICBF will recommend the judicial process to begin. One spouse may leave after this point in the adoption process.
Your adoption attorney will present your case to the court. Depending on the region, issuance of the adoption decree may take as few as 3 and as long as 7 weeks.
After the adoption decree is signed, a new birth certificate and Colombian passport are issued. This can take 1 to 3 days. The final step is the U.S. adoption visa and required medical exam. This can take 4 to 7 days. With your child’s visa issued by the Embassy in hand, you are then free to return home to the United States.
Colombia Adoption: Finalizing the Adoption
Once children have come home with their adoptive families, Colombia monitors the success of the placement and progress of the adjustment process through four post-adoption reports. These reports must be filed in Colombia at 3 months, 9 months, 15 months and 21 months after the adoption decree.
Colombia Adoption: The Country
Colombia is the fourth largest country in South America by area, located on the northwest shoulder of the continent and bordering Panama, Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador and Peru.
Colombia is a middle-sized country overall in terms of population — 46 million — and economic power. Emeralds, coal, oil, flowers and coffee are the key products it produces.
Once a colony of Spain, Colombia has been an independent republic since 1886. It is ethnically diverse, but the common language of Spanish unites its different groups. Only one other country in the world — Mexico — has a larger population of Spanish-language speakers.
Colombia is fortunate to have ample coastline on either side of the isthmus of Panama, giving it access to both the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean.