Ghana is a small, beautiful country located in the heart of West Africa. Unfortunately,
the economy has struggled and like other African countries, the majority of the population lives
in poverty. Traditionally extended family would take on orphaned family members, but with
a struggling economy, individual circumstances are often dire and they have found it increasingly
more difficult to care for an additional child; this leaves many children (even toddlers) left to
fend for themselves. This is not the hope or dream Ghanaians want for their children, thus
opening up to the idea of international adoption.
Ghana is not part to Hague Convention on International Adoption and Protection of Children.  We
follow the spirit of the convention in making sure all adoption procedures, including child
relinquishment, are performed in ethical and transparent manner, with constant oversight by child
welfare officials. As a young and emerging program, is is considered a pilot program and families
should be flexible and have a pioneering attitude that will help to pave the way for future families when
unforeseen delays or changes in the process occur. Please see U.S. Department of State
for more details.
About A Child was one of the first agencies to establish an adoption program in Ghana
and we were honored to help many orphaned children find their forever families in USA.
Due to recent developments,
our program has been put on hold, although adoptions are still being completed for
families that were in process at the time of the Ghanaian authorities decision.
Children from 1 to 14 years old may become available for international
adoption. Healthy infants are usually adopted by local
families but occasionally become available for adoption as well.
There are a lot of healthy children over the age of 3 and
special-needs children waiting for their forever families.
Siblings groups are available for adoption, but it is also
possible to adopt unrelated children as well. Ghanaian children
may reside in an orphanage or in a foster care situation. Public
school is available, however it is not free and many children do not
have the opportunity to attend school with any regularity.
Married couples may apply to adopt from Ghana. Adoptions by
single women are currently not allowed by Social Welfare Department
branches in the region we currently work in. Parents must be 25 years old and at least 21 years older than
the child(ren) they intend to adopt. Couples over 50 may also
apply to adopt from Ghana, but this is also on a case by case
basis. Families with up to 6 children may adopt, but smaller
families are preferred by Ghana Social Welfare for very young
children. Parents with more than 6 children may apply on a case
by case basis for special permission from Social Welfare. Parents
with health issues and disabilities may adopt as long as your
doctor will support your decision to adopt. Previous divorce is
While in the U.S. prospective families are asked to
prepare a �Letter of Introduction� to be sent to our facilitator
who will submit this to the Social Welfare Department
and receive the application needed for adoption in Ghana.
Typically, information about the child as well as
photos is provided at the time of referral. A simple dossier
of supporting documents, along with an approved homestudy will be
sent to the Social Welfare department when a child has been identified.
Social Welfare will then prepare a report on the child and adoptive
family, gain final adoption permission from any biological family
members, and make a recommendation for adoption to the courts.
Once a court date is set, an adoption trip to Ghana
is arranged. Only one parent is required to
travel to meet the child(ren) and appear in Court for the
adoption. A notarized spousal power of attorney will be required.
Our facilitator and attorney team will represent the
family in court. After the adoption has been
granted and travel documents have been issued our
team will represent the adoptive family at the US
Embassy in Ghana in order to obtain US immigrant
visa for the child.
Adoptions from Ghana should take around 1 year, however there
have been few adoptions from Ghana to date and could take less or
significantly longer depending on changes in the program as it
develops as well as depending on the child(ren) requested. Older or special-needs children may be referred right away, while
the wait for an infant could be over two years long. Typically,
it takes 2-4 months for the overseas team to get through Court
but unexpected circumstances and USCIS delays might extend the wait time.
Families will be required to make 2 trips. The first trip for Court,
which is required by About A Child, can be just 2-3 days in length.
However, we highly recommend staying in Ghana and spending as much
time bonding with your child as possible and experiencing your child�s
culture. The second trip, a few months after Court is after your
I600 has been approved by USCIS. You will attend the exit interview
with your child and in approximately 5-9 days have the child�s visa
and return home with your child(ren).
A Ghanaian adoption is very affordable, especially to families
able to take long vacations or FMLA leave at work. It costs only
slightly more to adopt more than one child, and American families
adopting siblings groups would most likely cover their expenses
entirely through the IRS tax credit.