Adopt from Colombia

SPENCE-CHAPIN BEGAN ITS ADOPTION PROGRAM IN COLOMBIA IN 1994, when we were approved by Instituto Colombiano de Bienestar Familiar (ICBF), the central authority for intercountry adoption.


Waiting Child Process

Colombia is a Hague Convention Country. Colombia’s Central Authority that is responsible for all intercountry adoption matters is the Instituto Colombiano de Bienestar Familiar (“ICBF”). Spence-Chapin’s foreign supervised provider in Colombia is Carmen Elena.

In Colombia, applicants to adopt must meet the following criteria:

  • Age: Up to 55. Applicants over 55 should consult with Spence-Chapin. If intending to adopt a child 0-8, applicants should be under 50.
  • Marital Status: Both heterosexual and homosexual married and unmarried couples as well as single men and women. Individuals with more than one divorce should consult with Spence-Chapin.
  • Medical: Identified medical conditions, including mental health diagnosis, will be considered on a case by case basis by the country’s Central Authority, Instituto Colombiano de Bienestar Familiar.

Characteristics of children available for intercountry adoption:

  • Gender: Male and Female*
  • Race/Ethnicity: Colombian, Afro-Colombian, Mestizo Colombian*
  • Ages: 0-10 years old at the time of referral. Sibling groups: Sibling groups of up to two on a case by case basis.
  • Special Characteristics: All children placed through this program have special needs. The following needs have been identified by our foreign supervised provider as the most common needs of children waiting for adoption from Colombia: unpredictable or unknown developmental delay, physical disabilities and down syndrome.

*Families are not permitted to gender or race specify.

This is a waiting child program. At this time, Spence-Chapin will only be recruiting families in the special needs program for specific waiting children. Please visit our waiting child page to learn more about waiting children in Colombia.

Approximate length of adoption process:

  • Since this is a waiting child program and families will be recruited for specific waiting children, there is no wait time to be matched with a child. Families applying to adopt a specific waiting child should be previously home studied or be willing to undergo additional pre-screening before entering the program since dossier submission must occur within 8 months of submitting a letter of intent to adopt a specific waiting child. The entire process is estimated to take 12-18 months.

Travel: 

  • In order to complete the adoption process, families will be required to make one trip to Colombia of approximately 4-6 weeks in length. Couples must both travel to country and be present for finalization in court.

Colombia Heritage

Colombia is a Hague Convention Country. Colombia’s Central Authority that is responsible for all intercountry adoption matters is the Instituto Colombiano de Bienestar Familiar (“ICBF”). Spence-Chapin’s foreign supervised provider in Colombia is Carmen Elena.

In Colombia, applicants to adopt must meet the following criteria:

  • Age: Up to 55. Applicants over 55 should consult with Spence-Chapin. If intending to adopt a child 0-8, applicants should be under 50.
  • Marital Status: Both heterosexual and homosexual married and unmarried couples as well as single men and women. Individuals with more than one divorce should consult with Spence-Chapin.
  • Medical: Identified medical conditions, including mental health diagnosis, will be considered on a case by case basis by the country’s Central Authority, Instituto Colombiano de Bienestar Familiar.
  • Applicants applying to this program must have a Cedula.

Characteristics of children available for intercountry adoption:

  • Gender: Male and Female*
  • Race/Ethnicity: Colombian, Afro-Colombian, Mestizo Colombian*
  • Ages: 0-10 years old at the time of referral; families must at least be open to a specified age range of 0-4 yrs and 11 months at the time of referral
  • Sibling groups: Sibling groups of up to two on a case by case basis.
  • Special Characteristics: Children adopted through this program may have no identified special needs and a potential for normal growth and development.

*Families are not permitted to gender or race specify.

Predicted wait time to be matched with a child:

  • Approximately 18-24 months after dossier submission.

Travel:

  • In order to complete the adoption process, families will be required to make one trip to Colombia of approximately 4-6 weeks in length. Couples must both travel to country and be present for finalization in court.

Read the Department of State adoption alerts about Colombia here.