Friday, June 11, 2010

Temesgen's visit to the Port Angeles office

Blog post by Merrily Ripley, AAI Executive Director

It was very special having Temesgen, our attorney and the legal representative of AAI in Ethiopia spend two days in our office last week.    He spent several hours with staff, familiarizing himself with our procedures and discussing mutual issues.  More than 30 members of local families met with him for dinner on Tuesday night and he was able to connect with young folks who had been placed by AAI as long as seven years ago.  On Wednesday he was available to meet with families and to receive calls from them and on Wednesday afternoon he met with a group of teenagers to talk and share with them.  He was especially pleased to hear that two of them are starting University in the fall.
The important message that Temesgen shared was that there are some in Ethiopia who do not think that adoption is a good plan for orphan children, though most still think it is a very good option.  Recent negative publicity has raised some concerns among the more educated people.   He reminded us that Americans do not have a “right” to adopt the children.  Whether or not children are placed is up to the Ethiopian government;  they set the rules and we must honor and respect them.

Temesgen is shown on the left with three young adults placed through AAI---Wubi Acheson, Tigist Winters and Tamrat Haskins.  Wubi and Tigist will be studying at the University of Washington in the fall.

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