Monday, January 1, 2007

CCAA, LID, G&R: Confused? Common Definitions

CCAA (China Center of Adoption Affairs)

The China Center of Adoption Affairs, (CCAA) is the agency responsible for both domestic and international adoption of Chinese orphans and also the care of the children in China's social welfare system. The CCAA was founded in 1996 and is located in Beijing.

Children’s Hope Yahoo Groups
The personal support system for Children’s Hope families. This is your direct access to families just like yours, whether you are in the dossier process, the waiting process or if you have successfully completed your adoption and seek to help and guide others adopting for the first time. Directors of each country program assist families with questions and moderate the groups, giving helpful information as soon as they receive it from our international staff. Our goal is to always keep you up-to-date and informed. Post your pictures, read resources, and share in fun activities to help pass the time in your wait and prepare to bring home an orphan into a safe and loving environment. Contact Ann Tollefson for a group evite.

CIS (US Citizenship and Immigration Service)
It is necessary to apply to the CIS to bring an internationally adopted child to the US. Adopted children remain citizens of their country until they touchdown in the US. You will use the I-600A Application for Advance Processing of Orphan Petition form for your application.

Department 1 (China)
Ten employees work for the CCAA's Department 1, where all China dossiers are reviewed. One staff member is dedicated to reviewing dossiers for waiting children; the other 9, for the review of NSN dossiers.

Department 2 (China)
Also known as "the matching room", Department 2 staff matches an approved dossier to a child available for international adoption.

Your dossier contains all the paperwork required for adoption in your country of choice. Your paperwork often must be notarized, state certified/apostilled, and authenticated, and is sometimes time sensitive. Dossier documents include: your home study, CIS approval (I-171-H), copies of passports, birth certificates, etc.

DTC (Dossier to China)
Once your dossier is completed, it will be delivered to the CCAA. The date that the dossier is sent to the CCAA is called the DTC.

G&R (Vietnam)
At a family's Giving and Receiving Ceremony their Vietnam adoption becomes complete. The ceremonies vary from province to province, with some ceremonies being shorter and more stately; and others, more elaborate and emotional.

ICBF (Colombia)
ICBF is Colombia's government body over adoption. Children become available for international adoption in Colombia after they have been relinquished directly from the birthmothers, are abandoned, or have been brought through the child protection system. The children are placed in ICBF foster homes or small home-style orphanages until they become legally free for adoption after birth parents are found, counseled and final relinquishments are made.

INS (Immigration and Naturalization Service)
A division of the US government which all US families work with for the immigration of their child into the US.

Upon your dossier’s receipt in China, the CCAA conducts an initial review of your full documentation and logs it into their system. The date that the dossier is logged in at CCAA is called your log in date. In general, the LID is about 2-4 weeks after DTC.

MOWA (Ethiopia)
The Ministry of Women's Affairs is the branch of the Ethiopian government that reviews and recommends families to adopt.

NSN (Non Special Needs)
A child without a known medical condition.

Parent Education
Ten hours of Hague compliant adoption education is required for all Children’s Hope families prior to submitting their dossier. In addition to a DVD set training which gives families a full ten hours of education, Children's Hope also supplies our families with a book to be utilized for years to come. In addition many of our families take advantage of parenting classes at their local hospital, adoption seminars, and a plethora of parenting and adoption books.

Because Children’s Hope is in full support of and in the process of seeking Hague Convention Accreditation, Children's Hope perspective parents are more comfortable and prepared through education when they unite with their child.

Each family dossier is matched with an available child. A referral consists of photos of the child and a health report detailing their progress and any medical needs (Exception: in Russia, the referral is referred to as a "blind referral", as no photos accompany the medical report). Parents have the option to accept or reject the referral. In China, the CCAA sends a batch of referrals to Children’s Hope, typically every 25-35 days. China parents who accept their referral can expect to receive travel authorization (TA) three to five weeks later, and will travel approximately eight weeks after receiving their TA.

Seeking Confirmation Letter
The official referral for a China Waiting Child.

SN (Special Needs)
A child with a discernible medical condition.

SWI (Social Welfare Institutes)
In the China, orphanages are referred to as Social Welfare Institutes, abbreviated SWI.

Tax Credits
A tax credit, per child, may be received for adoption expenses. Please refer to Tax Benefits for Adoption, which may be downloaded online at or Children’s Hope will mail you a copy at your request.

To find out about your state tax credits, contact your state’s Division of Family Services and tax office or try the Web at www.state.”yourstateabbreviation”.us; if you live in Missouri, the Web address will be Be sure to ask about your state specific tax credits for adoption and if you qualify for any special subsidy programs.

TA (Travel Approval)
Official notification from the country of adoption giving their approval for family travel to complete an international adoption.

WC (Waiting Child)
Children referred to as "waiting children" tend to be either older healthy children or those children with special medical needs. Wait time for the referral is usually shorter and sometimes fees and expenses may be reduced for these children.

The Wait
The adoption process length from dossier to adoption completion varies by country, age of the child to be adopted and whether the child is healthy or special needs. Visit Children's Hope Adoption Programs Overview page for current country timelines.