Married couples and singles both can adopt from Bulgaria. There is no requirement regarding the length of marriage or prior divorces.
The children who are eligible for adoption are within the age range of at least 12-months and 17 years of age. There are also children with special needs.
The children come with Bulgarian, Turkish or Roma background. The majority children are Roma.
The reasons for the abandonment can be different: poverty, uneployment, children born to single mothers who do not have any family support, children coming from families with health problems. The parent can either state their consent their children to be adopted or to abandon them without coming back fro them or asking reunification. These children are considered as children at risk and they are under the protection of the state and their cases are followed by a specific local social worker.
For each child who has to be placed outside their biological family and if there is no option for them to be placed in the family of relatives, a foster family is the first option which is being explored. In case there is no suitable foster family for the child, they should be placed in Institution - Home fo medical and social childcares or Center of family type.
Children are examined regularly by a doctor and usually have all the necessary vaccinations. If you need to see a specialist, the state provides an option to issue a reference and to get a discount from the fees.
The matching of children and families is conducted by the Ministry of Justice based on the best interest of the child and the possibilities of the adoptive parents to provide the physical, mental and social well-being of the child.
The adopting parents can keep their registration number in the register in the event of refusal due to health problems of the child, for which the adopting parents haven’t been informed preliminary or haven’t explicitly stated that they are ready to accept. In cases of refusals, the International Adoption Council refers the child to other prospective adoptive parents.
Two trips are necessary. The first trip is after the referral is accepted and it is around one week long. During the first trip the adoptive candidates meet with the child, with Vesta representative, institutional staff and social workers. The length of the first trip can be reduced if there are extraordinary circumstances. Only one of the adoptive parents can travel.
During the second trip the family takes custody of their child and after receiving the passport and the visa (is necessary) the family can leave Bulgaria. It lasts for 10 days, and sometimes there are conditions for shortening this period. Only one of the parents can travel. There is also an option to escort the child by a Vesta employee, and the family must give an explicit power of attorney.