The Virtual Conference “Practices and perspectives of Intercountry Adoptions” of the International Social Service (ISS)-Hellenic Branch was held on 24/6/2021 with great success. The aim of the Conference was the dissemination of the results of the scientific research of the ISS entitled “Difficulties, obstacles and practices in the implementation of intercountry adoptions: the views of social workers and adoptive parents. A scientific research for the years 2011-2019 “.

This research, which was integrated in the project “Practices and prospects of Intercountry Adoptions” and was carried out within the framework of the Active citizens fund program, implemented by the International Social Service- Hellenic Branch, aimed to investigate in depth the practices and obstacles of the implementation of intercountry adoptions that took place in Greece within the period 2011-2019.

The research was carried out using questionnaires addressed both to adoptive parents who have already adopted children transnationally and to professionals working in the competent authorities in the field of intercountry adoptions in Greece.

The research reached very important results regarding (among others):

  • The countries of origin of the adopted children
    • The reasons why adoptive parents choose specific countries of origin
    • Demographics of the adoptive parents
    • Demographics of the adopted children
    • The difficulties encountered in the necessary judicial and administrative actions
    • The difficulties that families face after the completion of the adoption
    • The level of specialization of the employees working in the field
  • The difficulties that these employees face during the evaluation of the prospective adoptive parents
    • The obstacles faced by the employees involved in the process

At the same time, the research highlighted important issues in the field regarding:

  • The need of prospective adoptive parents for more information
    • The need of professionals for further edification
    • The differences in the evaluation process of the prospective adoptive parents
    • The challenges faced by adoptive parents during the process
    • Issues of diversity and how these issues affect the adaptation of the child
    • The need to strengthen the parental counseling after the completion of the adoption

The research also resulted in a series of proposals, including the need:

  • for the implementation of law 4538/2018 in intercountry adoptions. The implementation of the above mentioned law can lead to the creation of a complete specialized training program for both Social Workers and parents.
    • that cases of intercountry adoptions to be taken over only by Social Workers specialized in intercountry adoptions.
    • for provision of systematic supervision to Social Workers working on intercountry adoptions cases.
    • for the creation of a counseling program for adoptive parents on an ongoing basis (before and after the completion of the adoption).
    • for counseling provided to adoptive parents on attitudes, perceptions and other issues related to interculturalism.
    • for awareness and education of key community factors regarding intercountry adoptions, inclusion and acceptance of diversity.
  • for the creation of a Good Practices Guide.
    • of the existence of a specialized counseling institute for adoptive parents.
    • for the enhancement of other NGOs to become more active, both in Greece and abroad.
    • of ensuring the non-profit nature of the provision of the services.

The project «Practices and perspectives in the intercountry adoptions» is conducted within the framework of the Active citizens fund and it is implemented by the International Social Service-Hellenic Branch.

The Active citizens fund in Greece is supported through a € 12m grant from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway as part of the EEA Grants 2014 – 2021.

The program aims to develop the sustainability and capacity of the civil society sector in Greece, and to strengthen its role in promoting and safeguarding democratic procedures, active citizenship and human rights. The Fund Operator for the Active citizens fund in Greece is Bodossaki Foundation in consortium with SolidarityNow.


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