As you know, adoption is not a quick process. Even if you are really fast at getting your dossier completed, you still have to wait for that referral, then wait for your court date, then wait for your Embassy appointment before you can bring your child(ren) home. To help you through all this waiting, the family coordinators at America World send out weekly encouragement e-mails to us. In every issue of these weekly e-mails, there is a picture of an adopted child who is home, a Bible verse of the week, a tip of the week, an offer to pray for specific prayer requests, and a link to the America World blog.
Through the months, I have really looked forward to receiving these weekly e-mails. While families are paper-chasing, the tips of the week are geared primarily for getting the paperwork done, changes to paperwork policies, etc. Now that we are waiting for a referral, the tips are more related to that waiting period: Different classes we can take online to prepare us for our children, things that the Ethiopian government requires before we will pass court, etc. For example, one of the more recent tips of the week referred to being "on deck". When a family is approximately 1-3 months away from receiving a referral, America World will send out an "On Deck" e-mail with information on what to expect when their referral arrives. At that time, America World asks families to verify their current child request age and gender by e-mailing their family coordinator. Families requesting to adopt siblings need to verify with their family coordinator whether they wish to wait on the siblings requested or are open to a single child. When referrals arrive in the AW office, Family Coordinators first review and enter the children's information into their database and then make the much anticipated referral call! Their desire is to devote all of their time and attention to processing the referrals so that phone calls can be made as quickly as possible after taking care of certain paperwork pieces.
During this adoption process, there are obvious highs and lows, and I for one appreciate America World's dedication in trying to keep us well-informed with any new procedures, paperwork, etc. They truly are WONDERFUL!