CHARLOTTE, N.C. — As the war in Ukraine continues, many people in the U.S. are looking for ways to help. One common question our verify team has seen is if people can adopt children from Ukraine right now.
The pictures and videos we have seen from Ukraine are heartbreaking. Many people have reached out to us, asking how they can help.
One way people are looking to help is through adoption. It's a complicated subject because of the war.
Can you start the adoption process for a child in Ukraine?
No, you can not start an adoption for a child in Ukraine right now. However, Stephenson said families who were already involved in the adoption process before the war can continue.
WHAT WE FOUND:
U.S. citizens may only adopt foreign children who are truly orphans.
The immigration and nationality act considers someone an orphan if their parents died, disappeared or abandoned them.
They can also be considered an orphan if the sole surviving legal parent can't take care of them.
Stephenson said because there is an ongoing war in Ukraine, orphan status is hard to determine at this point.
"All though it is a very heartbreaking situation, it is not the moment to try to go and go identify a child that you think is an orphan that is a perfect match for your home because there would be some uncertainty if that child has family who just can't be with them at this moment and would have the potential to unify later," Stephenson said.
The Bureau of Consular Affairs states adoptions to the United States from Ukraine are impossible at this time.
Ukraine's ministry of policy also released this statement saying in part:
"The National Social Service is not currently considering cases and is not providing consent and/or permits for the adoption of children by foreigners."
For other ways to help these children and all others affected by the war in Ukraine click on this link.
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