Friday, April 13, 2007

How'd you get here from there?-Part II

This seems like as good a point as any to talk about the financial piece of our adoption. It's funny, but it's not something that really concerned us too much. I suppose that sounds very flippant, but that's not how it's meant. In a similar sense, we didn't really think too much about the exact *number* of children we would be parenting after the adoption was final. At our adoption shower, a friend of ours even commented, "Wow. SIX kids...have you guys (read: completely lost your minds?) been thinking about what that will BE like?" My husband and I looked at each other and smiled, "Nope, not really, " we answered. Again, this is not too say that we didn't THINK about what we were undertaking, but we just jumped in feet first with confidence that it would work out okay. Some would call that foolish, but we prefer to think of it as a leap of faith.

So, that's the context in which we approached the financial aspect of the adoption as well.

There are so many options out there for adoption financing: loans, grants, fundraisers, savings, etc...a very thorough and extensive discussion can be found on Erin's Transracial/Transcultural Adoption Blog. She also has a section where she talks here about the cost of adoption as a barrier. It is also important to do your research and ask for recommendations about different agencies costs and services provided. Some agencies have lower fees, but "hidden" costs. Some have higher fees, but the quality of the services are worth the extra cost. Some have been in the business longer than others. Our agency has a real commitment not only to the children being adopted, but also act as advocates for those children who are not yet, or will never be, adopted. I think this speaks volumes about their service, even before you see a fee schedule. And, bear in mind, things are on a schedule. Not all fees are due at once, and you have some flexibility about when to pay depending on how quickly you choose to move through the process.

I don't think I am alone when I say that we found once God firmly put adoption (and this specific adoption, in particular) on our hearts; the money worked itself out. No, we didn't inherit a windfall from Great-Aunt Hildegarde, but we did see possibilities for funding that we hadn't considered before. And, speaking from the back end of our adoption now, we have taken full advantage of the Federal Adoption Tax Credit, as well as my husband's employer's generous adoption reimbursement program (which many companies offer-check with your HR person). In the end, with the tax refund and the reimbursements, we will not have paid ANYTHING out of pocket for both of our adoptions, AND we have two beautiful new deductions that the federal government will continue to incent us for having each year at tax time! It could be just enough to fund another adoption in the future...the hardest part for us was yet to come...choosing our country program!

5 comments:

KELLI BELLY said...

Thanks for sharing this too. It's very uplifting and motivating :0)

Julie Cooper said...

Brett and I didn't even know about the Federal Adoption Tax Credit before we embarked on adopting from Ethiopia last year! This huge tax credit came into place a couple years after we adopted our last child 6 years prior, and we must have been living under a rock because we missed the news on it. Last summer I remember reading and re-reading about this tax credit, and not really believing it. But it's true. Brett and I used savings to fund the adoption and last week we got a nice check back from Uncle Sam and will get a smaller amount back next year. This tax credit made our Ethiopian adoption FREE! (For those reading this who don't know about this tax credit, the amount you can get back is linked to how much you pay into federal taxes, so the government lets you spread the credits out over a few years -- how it exactly works basically depends on your income.) Anyway, what a blessing it is to have this money back! It will completing fund Brett's Master's degree that he just started. :)

patjrsmom said...

Julie,
That is great news! We, too, experienced an enormous tax refund this year and (on the advice of our accountant) are not having any taxes taken out this year because (based on this year's taxes) we don't expect to owe anything next year either!

Kelli,
I'm glad this was helpful! Keep praying about it. God will open the doors you need if adoption is part of His plan for you.

Anonymous said...

Dear Parent’s

Once-in-a-thousand-years!

The Committee for the Celebration of the Ethiopian Millennium (CCEM), invites you to come to Washington D.C. to participate in welcoming the Year 2000 of the Ethiopian calendar. A new millennium!

In a few months, Ethiopians and Ethiopian-Americans will celebrate the dawning of a new millennium. It is equally exciting and humbling to find oneself at this juncture of Ethiopian history. It is exciting because we are part of the unique Ethiopian/human civilization since the time of Lucy/Dinqnesh and are coming up to close another millennium. It is also exciting to know that we are the only nation on earth with our own unique calendar and will have another millennium that is intimately ours. Yet again the coming of the third millennium is humbling. It is humbling because although so much has been accomplished in the millennium to pass, Ethiopians face daunting challenges from the onset in the Third Millennium.

Thus, recognizing that the coming New Year is distinct and needs to be accepted with confidence, a committee is organized to celebrate the Year 2000 E.C. The Committee for the Celebration of the Ethiopian Millennium (CCEM) is a registered non-profit organization and comprised of active community members across the United States. The place will be in Washington D.C. from Saturday September 8 – Wednesday September 12, 2007.

At the moment, the CCEM is putting together the necessary thoughts and organizational frameworks to arrange a five-days long festivity and other important social, historical and cultural reflections of the past, present and future ideals of the Ethiopian Millennium. The CCEM expects 50,000 Ethiopians to participate in the five-days event.

As an adaptive parent(s) of an Ethiopian child(ren), CCEM thought that participating in this once-in-a-thousand-year event with your child(ren) will be historical for your entire family. In addition, if you have the desire and capacity to be part of the millennium celebration effort, you can support CCEM with financial donation or solicitation of sponsors. CCEM has a PayPal system in its website or you can mail your check or money order to:
Ethiopian Millennium
1115 U Street N.W
Washington DC, 20009

For more information visit us at www.ethiopianmillennium2000.com or e-mail us at info@ethiopianmillennium2000.com

Thanks
CCEM

Michelle said...

Hi! It's edifying to read of another Catholic homeschooler who is has also adopted transracially. Congratulations on the latest additions to your family!