I received confirmation today that the referral information for the 12 families who are being matched with children is at the Minister of Gender and Family Promotion's office. This is definately good news. The indication was that the referrals will be coming soon however the Minister does need to look over each file and approve the matches before they are sent. I understand that this is part of the new adoption procedures in Rwanda and it is a important safeguard thus I respect the process. At the same time, as a mother, I am disheartened that we do not know how much longer our children will be waiting for their forever family.
I know the nuns do their best at the orphanage so don't get me wrong. But they know just as we do that caring for a dozen infants 24 hours a day is not adequate. This is one of those situations that because of my profession I know to darn much. I know what the potential impacts on brain development are. I also know the amazing things that can happen when children are placed with loving, knowledgable and structured homes. One of the professionals I always look to for information on the impact of neglect on children is Dr. Bruce Perry. Dr. Perry grew up in my same hometown, Bismark ND (thus I may be impartial!), he holds dual PhD and MD degrees and is a psychiatrist who has devoted his work to understanding and helping children who have experienced neglect and trauma. If you ever get the chance to hear him speak he is easy to understand and pulls together a understanding of neurodevelopment and trauma that makes complete sense as to why children display the behaviors that they do and how we can help them heal. To get a glimpse into what I have learned and experienced with the kids I work with check out these articles and his website. Some of the information is scholarly and some more article like: