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  • Writer's pictureAkasha Usmani

Bridging gaps through adoption

Inter-country adoption are a huge contributor to increasing community engagements. Australian couples are choosing to adopt children from India, adding another dimension to this bilateral relationship.

Various non-profit organisations work towards facilitating this process of adoption for Australian families

Australia is a country that encourages inter-country adoption and has a well-defined process for couples who want to adopt children from India. Over the years, there have been numerous successful adoptions from India, making the country a preferred choice for many Australian couples. There are various reasons for this, including India’s rich culture, heritage, and diversity, as well as the fact that many Indian children are in need of loving homes and families.

The process of adopting a child from India to Australia involves various legal and bureaucratic procedures that must be followed by both - the adoptive parents and the adoption agency. To adopt a child from India, Australian couples must meet the eligibility criteria set by the Indian government and the Australian government. Once the couple meets the eligibility criteria, they must select an adoption agency accredited by the Indian government. The agency assists the couple in completing the necessary paperwork and guides them through the entire adoption process. The adoption of a child requires careful planning and preparations. After the work with the agency, the couples undergo a home study, meet the child, travel to India and fulfill the visa requirements.

India has one of the highest numbers of children living in an orphanage and children who are abandoned. India is home to the largest number of children in the world, with an estimated 1.5 million children growing up in residential institutions. Unfortunately, many of these institutions are privately run and poorly regulated, leaving children in extremely vulnerable situations. Children in these institutions are at risk of abuse, exploitation, and neglect, with limited access to education, healthcare, and emotional support.

There are several charities working in Australia to help adopt a child in India and provide a new life for them. One such charity is Adopt Change, a not-for-profit organization which is registered as a Charity with the Australian Charity and Not-for-profits Commission. Adopt Change works to improve the lives of children by raising awareness, providing education and advocating. Another such organization is Mukti Australia.

India has been a location for many Australian couples who want to adopt a child. Australia has the largest Indian population, the Indian diaspora community is rapidly increasing in Australia. The Indians in Australia play a significant role in fostering people-to-people ties as well as the cultural exchanges between the two countries. Over the years, Indians have become an integral part of the Australian population, contributing to the country's economic and cultural growth. Due to this relationship between the two countries, many Australians are already familiar with Indian culture and traditions. This has resulted in a growing interest among some Australian couples to adopt Indian children and incorporate Indian culture, rituals, and traditions into their families. For many adoptive parents, this is a meaningful way to honor and celebrate the rich cultural heritage of their adopted child. Moreover, by embracing Indian culture, these parents are also providing their child with a strong sense of cultural identity and a connection to their country of origin. This cultural exchange not only enriches the lives of the adoptive families but also helps to foster greater cultural understanding and appreciation between India and Australia.

The Indian adoption system, cultural diversity and the legal context of the adoption are all factors which makes India a preferred location for adoption. The cost of adoption is a compelling factor as it is significantly lower than other countries like the United States, Canada or Europe.

India has a well-established adoption system that is governed by the Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA). CARA ensures that the adoption process is transparent, ethical, and in the best interests of the child. The Indian adoption system follows international adoption laws known as Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Cooperation, thus making adoptions more reliable.

There have been many successful adoptions. One such adoption story has captured the hearts of many and even inspired a six-time Oscar-nominated movie called "Lion". The movie is based on the true story of Saroo Brierley, who at the age of 5, was separated from his family in India and ended up surviving on the streets before being taken to an orphanage. Eventually, he was adopted by an Australian couple. Despite the comfortable life that he had in Australia, Saroo had a desire to reconnect with his biological family. After 25 years of searching, he finally found his hometown and was reunited with his birth mother and siblings in India. Saroo's story is a testament to the power of love, family, and the unbreakable bonds of culture and heritage. It has touched the hearts of people around the world and has inspired many to consider adoption and inter-country adoption as a means of building loving families and making a positive impact on the world. The movie called attention to the plight of India’s children who live in an orphanage, forced to survive without a family.

Inter-country adoption thus provides a unique opportunity for families to bridge gaps and embrace cultural diversity while providing loving homes to children in need. Australia's well-defined adoption process and India's well-established adoption system make it possible for Australian couples to adopt Indian children, providing them with the chance to experience the rich cultural heritage and traditions of India.

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