Angola family waits to bring adopted Congo son home

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Stephanie Kline and her husband want to adopt a child from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, but they’re facing obstacles in their first year of the process.

They started their search of adopting a child after a mission trip to Haiti months after the earthquake in 2010. Kline said Haitian parents started to give their children away to send them to America for a better life. After finding out they didn’t qualify to adopt a child from Haiti, they started to look at the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

“We’re just finishing up the court process,” said Kline. “Probably in a couple weeks, he will legally be ours.”

Kline and her husband started the adoption process in June 2013. Three months later, the Congo government started refusing exit permits for children while it investigates claims that some kids were abused by their adoptive families. They join hundreds of American families waiting to bring their adopted children from the third world country.

“There are a lot of parents that legally have children in the Congo, but they just can’t bring them back to live with them yet,” Kline said.

They only have pictures and one video of their soon-to-be adopted son walking around and playing at the orphanage in Congo.

Kline said there’s an organization based out of Scottsdale, Ariz. called Both Ends Burning. The organization’s goal is to defend every child’s human right to find a permanent family, according to its website.

Both Ends Burning has started an online petition on the White House’s website to call on President Obama to work with Congo’s president Joseph Kabila to end the suspension of adoptions.

Kline said even when the exit permit ban is lifted; it’ll still be several months before they’ll get to bring their son home because they’ll have to go through another round of investigation.

“If there’s a way to expedite things, make them faster, it would be a lot better,” Kline said.

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