By Channel 4 News,
AMERICAN parents who adopted children from abroad are advertising them for re-adoption to strangers on a Facebook group, Channel 4 News finds.
A Channel 4 News investigation finds that unwanted kids are listed on the Facebook group, and other online forums and websites, when their American parents decide that they no longer want them or are unable to care from them.
Hundreds of parents travel from the United States to Ethiopia every year to adopt kids, with 250,000 kids adopted to the US from overseas since 2000.
Andrea Gaines lives in Virginia, US, and has adopted four kids from Ethiopia. One of her children Biruk developed behavioural issues that have impacted the whole family.
“He starting talking about wanting to kill himself, really hurting himself, banging himself against walls, he would run up and down the street talking nonsense and babbling … just being uncontrollable.”
Andrea turned to a Facebook group to find him a new family to adopt him who could better cope.
She defended listing him on the site; “Just posting and saying ‘Hey do you want my kids?’ I don’t think that’s appropriate but you know sometimes when you’re desperate and looking for somebody who might be the right person for your child – sometimes you’ve just got to put it out there,” she said.
Two people responded to Andrea’s message and offered Biruk a trial period. Andrea said that she would only hand over a child in the right circumstances.
Part of Andrea’s listing of her child online explained her “desperate search”, and explained his emotional difficulties, but also said “great at soccer and super charming when he’s in a good mood.”
So far 260 families have signed up to the private and hidden group. These sort of private adoptions are frequently done without any oversight from social services.
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