Boys and girls, from toddler to school age, with mild to moderate medical issues including heart defects, cleft lip/palates, limb deformities, hepatitis B, cerebral palsy, albinism, hernias, hearing impairment and other issues are available. Some conditions may be relatively minor or may have already been surgically corrected. Comprehensive medical and development information provided as well as photos. Many more boys available than girls.

The processing of special needs adoptions is completed within 10-12 months. Once you have accepted a special needs referral and submits their adoption documents to Beijing, you travel to China to bring the child home in less than 4-5 months.

At least one parent must travel once to China to finalize the adoption but both parents traveling is preferred. Families will be assisted by bilingual guides during their two week trip. Internal travel logistics including hotels, domestic flights and ground transportation can be arranged by our China coordinator.

Adoptive parents must be at least 30 and not more than 55 years of age and must be married at least 2 years (longer if previously divorced). Single women and married couples are eligible to adopt. Applicants must meet China’s eligibility criteria regarding income, net worth, physical and mental health, and Body Mass Index.

Adopting From China

The China adoption process will take most of a year to complete (from the date of your application until you return home with your child) and is very bureaucratic. This means there are specific requirements, forms, and steps in the process that must be followed exactly. We will help you through each step of the process with lots of support and direction.

China Information Packet

Down Syndrome Initiative

We are thrilled to announce a new initiative to help Chinese children with Down Syndrome get adopted. Through the generosity of our supporters, we are now able to handle these adoptions with NO AGENCY FEE.

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China Adoption Process

We are excited about your interest in adopting a Chinese child through our program. The information below will explain the general adoption process, although each family’s situation is unique and may vary a bit from what follows.

Adopting a healthy child from China requires a wait of more than 10 years, and very few families are choosing this option. Adopting a Chinese child with special needs can be accomplished in less than 12 months. China has divided their special needs children into two categories:

Special Needs – includes younger children with minor issues. In order to adopt a Special Needs child, you must have a complete dossier of documents already registered in Beijing.

Special Focus – includes older children, children with more complicated health issues, or children with more than one health issue. Special Focus children can be locked in before your dossier is completed, so long as you submit all required documents within 6 months.

There are two ways to begin the process of adopting a Chinese child:
  1. Select a specific waiting child and move forward with that child’s adoption. We refer to this as a Child-Specific adoption. You could choose a child from our list or we can search for a child for you from among the thousands of Chinese children who are waiting to be adopted.
  2. Apply to adopt through our program, without a specific child identified. While you are compiling your adoption documents, we’ll be looking for the right child for your family. Once your dossier is logged-in in China, you will be eligible to be matched with a Special Needs child, which usually means a younger child with more minor issues.

Learn about our domestic infant adoption program

Family Testimonials and References

Read below to hear what some of our families had to say about their Cradle of Hope adoption experience

Dimitri and Julie (TX) adopted a 7.5 year old boy with dwarfism from China in 2018.

Our Cradle of Hope experience was excellent. The team was extremely knowledgeable, organized and very responsive and supportive. We were overwhelmed at first with the process, paperwork and all the requirements for international adoption, but they broke it down for us and made it easy to understand. Our experience in China was great and our guides were so helpful and knowledgeable. They have also offered us support post adoption to make sure everyone is adjusting well. We highly recommend partnering with Cradle of Hope for international adoption. We had zero issues resulting from incorrect or incomplete documents and information. They were so thorough in providing the requirements and then carefully reviewing everything prior to submission. We know this helped move our process along as quickly as possible. We’re so grateful to have our son home.

Dave and Allie (NE) adopted a 1 year old girl with post-operative anal atresia from China in 2016.

Cradle of Hope made our adoption process smooth and easy. They were very prompt in answering our questions via phone or email – and getting us the answers we needed whether it was more information, addressing our concerns, or coordinating travel arrangements. They explained the whole process thoroughly and made us feel at ease traveling to China to get our forever daughter. We never felt alone or without support during the process. Our son who traveled with us (6 years old at the time) has some severe food allergies and Cradle of Hope was able to get the extra info we needed regarding traveling to China with allergies. This individualized attention meant so much to us. While in China, everything went smoothly for us, and we knew exactly how to get a hold of them, if we had any issues. Their care and genuine concern for our family made us feel like we were working with family. We are so happy with our little girl and if we decide to adopt again, we will definitely choose Cradle of Hope.

Daniel and Nicole (MD) adopted a 3 year old boy with a corrected heart defect from China in 2017.

We worked with Cradle of Hope as both our placement and home study agency. Throughout our entire process, the CHAC staff was always there and available to answer questions or emails, even on days they were supposed to be off or closed. Everything went so smoothly from start to finish. Our guides and all of the in-country support were fantastic. This was our first adoption experience and we felt extremely well cared for with CHAC and would happily recommend them. Thank you, CHAC staff, for helping us bring our son home!!

Stacey (CT) adopted her 5 year old son with delayed language development from China in 2016.

My Cradle experience was very smooth. Your staff walked me and my family through all the steps of my adoption. The paperwork was intense but your staff was very helpful. The coordinators in China were very helpful and the trip went well. I’m so happy to have my son home.

Steps To Adopting From China

The following is a basic explanation of the steps we will take together to bring your new son or daughter home.

You can apply to our program to adopt an identified child or you can submit a generic adoption application for a child to be identified as your paperwork progresses. We’re happy to discuss both options with you. Submitting your application packet begins the process. If you have applied to adopt a specific waiting child, we will immediately lock-in that child’s file under your name on the CCCWA system. Usually within one week, we receive notice from China that the match has been approved.

You will need to identify a Hague-accredited adoption agency in your state to provide homestudy services. We’re happy to give you some recommendations. Your local agency will also be responsible for three post-placement reports after your child comes home. We will work closely with your homestudy agency to ensure as smooth a process as possible.

Your dossier is the collection of documents required by Chinese adoption officials, called the China Center for Children’s Welfare and Adoption (CCCWA). The CCCWA is the first step in the approval process of your adoption. The dossier is comprised of three primary categories of documents: your homestudy, your I-800A US immigration approval and a collection of documents about yourself (i.e. birth certificate, marriage certificate, employment letter, health form, etc.).

Your CHAC caseworker will work with your homestudy social worker to review, edit and finalize your homestudy after you have done your part of that process. CHAC staff will assist you with US immigration approval, which can only begin after your homestudy is final. For all documents produced by you or third parties, you will be well trained on what is needed and we will review each document to make sure it is exactly right. On average, the dossier completion process takes about four to five months. Once we send the dossier to CCCWA, it will need to be “logged in,” which takes about one week from CCCWA receipt. At that point, processing and approval of your adoption by the CCCWA usually takes about 2 months.

Once your dossier has been reviewed and approved by the CCCWA, they will send your Letter Seeking Confirmation (LSC), also referred to as Letter of Approval (LOA). We will then overnight the letter to you so you can sign and return it. This letter will be used in the next step of the process, which is the I-800.

As you wait for your LSC, Cradle of Hope team will help you to complete drafts of Form I-800 (Petition to Classify Convention Adoptee as an Immediate Relative), Form I-864W, and Form I-800 Supplement 1. This is done ahead of time, so when the LSC is received, these forms are ready to be submitted (by CHAC) to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS).

The I-800 is very similar to the I-800A, the application you filed with USCIS prior to submitting your dossier to China. The difference is in the request. The I-800A requests approval of you as prospective adoptive parents, to adopt a not-yet-selected child with specific special needs. The I-800 requests approval to adopt a specific child.

After CHAC submits the I-800 and its accompanying documents, I-800 approval notice typically takes three to four weeks to arrive. The I-800 approval means that your request has been approved and that your specific child is eligible to receive an immigrant visa. Once approved, you can move onto the final major step of the process, Article 5.

Financing Adoption Expenses

We understand that international adoption is not inexpensive. Our fees are determined based on domestic and overseas expenses, and include certain unavoidable costs such as rent, utilities, telephones, printing, supplies and postage, as well as compensation for our staff. Our fees must cover all operating expenses and provide sufficient reserve to cover months without placements or expenses incurred in connection with children who are ultimately not placed for adoption with our clients. We must also budget for travel expenses to foreign countries to begin new programs or iron out wrinkles in existing ones, as well as for foreign adoption officials to come to the United States to check on the adjustment of their children. Finally, it is important that our fees generate enough income to allow us to assist foreign orphanages with necessities such as food, clothing, medicine, and educational equipment for the many children who wait for families.

Adoption can be as rewarding as it is complicated.

We’ve been in your place. Let us help you every step of the way.