4. April, 2013UncategorizedNo comments
A new notice has been posted for Ethiopia. West Sands families generally do not travel to the areas listed, but we want you to be aware of current events in-country.
Notice: Health Concerns in Ethiopia
On March 14, 2013, U.S. Embassy Addis Ababa released an important message for U.S. citizens via email to U.S. adoption service providers and a notice on the U.S. Embassy Addis Ababa website about a recent increase in suspected meningitis cases in Ethiopia. The suspected cases are primarily in the Southern Nations, Nationalities and People’s Region (SNNPR), but the area of concern extends north to include tourist areas around Hawassa and Lake Langano. The Department of State shares the full text below in order to ensure wide distribution among the adoption community. As always, we recommend that adoptive parents and other U.S. travelers check Travel.State.gov prior to traveling to Ethiopia or any other country for the latest travel information from the Department of State.
Many adopted children come from SNNPR, and adoptive parents are encouraged to work with their adoption service providers (ASPs) to ensure that children who come from affected areas are properly evaluated by a medical professional, and that treatment or vaccination be given if required. Given that children from all over Ethiopia live together in care centers in Addis Ababa, all adoptive parents should be aware that the risk of contracting meningitis is not necessarily limited to children who come from the affected region. The Embassy’s Consular Section can provide a list of pediatricians working in Addis Ababa, but most ASPs have an existing network of health care providers, and general inquiries about your child’s health situation are best directed to your ASP.
On a related note, many adopted children face significant health challenges in Ethiopia that require continuing treatment after immigration to the United States. While the Embassy’s panel physician evaluates children for their fitness to travel and the likelihood of them transmitting a communicable disease, such as tuberculosis, it is primarily the responsibility of the ASP and the orphanage to ensure proper medical treatment from the time a child enters institutional care until the day he/she travels to the United States. Adoptive parents should expect that a child’s medical file will travel with him/her from a rural clinic in the village where they were born, to the pediatrician’s office in Addis Ababa, and then to be made available for use by the child’s new physician in the United States. If such information is not made available as a matter of course, adoptive parents are encouraged to request it from their ASPs.
Embassy Addis Ababa Notice:
In light of these findings, the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa recommends that U.S. citizens residing and traveling in Ethiopia avoid travel to these areas unless they have been vaccinated against meningitis within the past three years. If you were vaccinated recently, do not travel to these affected areas for at least 14 days after receiving the vaccination. (Meningitis vaccinations do not take effect for 14 days.)
If you are going to live in or travel to Ethiopia, please take the time to tell us about your trip by enrolling in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). If you enroll, we can keep you up to date with important safety and security announcements. It will also help your friends and family get in touch with you in an emergency. You should remember to keep all of your information in STEP up to date. It is important during enrollment or updating of information to include your current phone number and current email address where you can be reached in case of an emergency.
1. April, 2013UncategorizedNo comments
April 1st, 2013
Due to the IRS regulations regarding charitable contributions, donations made on behalf of specific families cannot be considered tax deductible. West Sands Adoptions will however, continue to accept donations and grants for non-specified families, and will issue donors and charitable organizations with formal donation receipts to be used for tax purposes. Donors who wish to receive tax verifiable receipt may request that their funds be contributed to a specific family, but the allocation of those funds is not guaranteed.West Sands Adoptions’ Board of Directors has conducted an annual review of our current Donation Policy, and has determined that revisions are to be made immediately.
Once a family has been awarded the maximum funds needed to cover their adoption costs, West Sands Adoptions will not refund any excess amount of charitable contributions to the adoptive family. Instead, those funds will be retained within our charitable organization to benefit others in need, and will be redistributed between other adoptive families, and/or the agency’s humanitarian projects. Excess funds received from grant organizations will be returned to those charities depending on the organization’s overpayment/refund policy. Excess amounts paid to a specific family as a non-charitable donation can be refunded to the family, so long as the donor did not receive a receipt for tax purposes. We will review each family’s account when donations or funds are received on their behalf, to ensure those funds will not cause an overage. If a family has reached the maximum funds needed we will return the funds to the contributor, to give directly to the family for third party expenses.
For families who currently hold an excess amount for their upcoming adoption costs, please contact your primary case manager to determine how future donations should be processed. Refunds will be provided to those who currently have an overage of funds that is more than their projected future costs. Refunds issued will be less the projected future costs.
West Sands Adoptions
28. February, 2013UncategorizedNo comments
Today, February 28th, 2013, we have been notified from the COA that West Sands Adoptions has received Hague Re-Accreditation. We are so pleased to make this announce, and feel that it is a reflection of our hard work and efforts. Hague Accreditation is not easy to obtain. West Sands’ Board of Directors, Agency Directors, and Staff Members have been committed to the Policies and Standards required by the COA to receive this accreditation. West Sands Adoptions will continue to serve Orphan Children in China and Ethiopia, and adoptive families across the United States. We thank The Lord again for this blessing, and pledge to continue our good works in His name.
- Deidre on Resources for HIV AIDS
- mimi on Woudneh, WSA Ethiopia Director, visit’s Kentucky & Utah
- roentgenologists on Ethiopia Update from the U.S. State Dept
- Ghislaine Reio on Message from the U.S. Embassy Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
- westsandsadoption.org posts April 6, 2012 | All That Stuff on Ethiopia Program Update
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