Uganda Adoption Program

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Nightlight’s Uganda program began in 2010. Uganda is located is a beautiful country in African often referred to as the “Pearl” of Africa. The fees for an adoption from Uganda are reasonable, and we estimate that the process will take approximately 2-3 years from application to completion depending upon the type of child you are seeking to adopt.

Nightlight Christian Adoptions works with specific children’s homes in Uganda. Children in Uganda are often abandoned due to poverty related to social problems and the parents’ illnesses. Children available for adoption from Uganda have special needs which requires special families. Families traveling to Uganda to adopt their children will receive a full and final adoption decree from the Ugandan courts. Uganda laws require adoptive families to live in Uganda for 12 months for foster the child they wish to adopt. It is important for families to prepare to live in Uganda for at least 2 years to complete the adoption process. Nightlight is committed to helping families prepare for the adoption of children from Uganda by providing educational information on developmental delays and health issues.

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To learn more about adopting from Uganda, you may contact us, call our KY office at (859) 263-9964, or directly email our Uganda advocate: Lisa Whitaker at

Uganda Adoption Program Details:

  • Adoptive parents must be 21 years older than they child they wish to adopt
  • Adoptive parents but live in Uganda for up to 2 years

View children available for adoption. Uganda adoption is a wonderful program for families desiring to adopt children 5 years old and older with special needs. Ekisa Ministries cares for children with more severe special needs.  Children living in poverty and raised in institutional care often have both developmental and emotional needs. Children who would otherwise have little hope for a future can have a better life with the emotional and physical security that a loving family can offer, along with the availability of excellent medical care in the United States.

Most loving, stable families qualify to adopt from Uganda. However, certain factors could keep you from adopting in general or from Uganda in particular, as each country has its own rules as to who can adopt. Uganda requires a 12-month residency requirement for adoptive families. Parents must be 21 years older than the child they wish to adopt. Before applying, please consult with Nightlight regarding any sensitive issues that may apply to you, such as a divorce, a mental health issue, or a criminal history.

  1. Make application to Nightlight Christian Adoptions.
  2. Begin your adoption home study and submit form I-600A to CIS.
  3. Begin to assemble your dossier. We will give you detailed instructions.
  4. Once USCIS has approved your adoption home study, you will receive your pre-approval notice.
  5. Once your USCIS approval has been received and a child is available for you, you will receive a referral of a child in Uganda.
  6. Complete official referral review with Nightlight’s Social Services Department.
  7. Once you have accepted a match of a child, you will be asked to travel to Uganda to meet your child face-to-face. Before you travel, your dossier will be delivered to the attorney in Uganda. When you arrive in Uganda, you will meet the child at the orphanage. You will also meet with the Probation Officer. After the Probation Officer obtains the fostering order, you will be expected to remain in Uganda fostering your child for 12 months. At the end of the 12 months of fostering, you and your child will appear before the Alternative Care Panel after a request has been made by the Probation Officer. The Alternative Care Panel must issue an approval letter to the court before the attorney is able to file the Petition in the Uganda High Court Family Division. You will receive a court date. You may be required to live in Uganda for 24 months to fulfill the fostering requirement, attend court hearing, process I-600, and obtain approval and a VISA for the child to come home to the United States.
  8. The ruling will be issued anywhere from 2 weeks to 6 weeks after your hearing. (This varies by the judge.)
  9. The attorney can register the adoption, obtain a birth certificate, and apply for your child’s passport and file the I-600 on your behalf with the US Embassy.
  10. Attend the US Embassy appointment, pick up your child’s visa, and bring your child home!

You receive a referral of a child from Nightlight Christian Adoptions. The referral will include a brief social history of the child, the current health and development of the child, and lab test results for HIV. Nightlight requires that you have this information reviewed by a medical professional. We highly recommend that you have this information reviewed by a doctor who specializes in international adoption before you make a decision. Once you decide to accept a referral, you will be considered “matched” with the child. You will then travel to Uganda to meet your child and your dossier will then be given to the attorney in Uganda. The attorney will put together information on the child’s file and add this information to your dossier to file with the court. You will spend time bonding with your child while fostering the child for 12 months. After the fostering period, the probation officer will request a meeting with the Alternative Care Panel. After receiving approval from the Care Panel, the attorney will request a court date. After the court order is issued, the attorney will file your I-600 with the US Embassy. You will also be expected to take your child for their visa medical appointment. Once these things are approved, the US Embassy will invite you for your child’s visa appointment.

Within 30 days of your arrival home, you must have a home visit by your home study provider. Your home study provider will prepare one brief post adoption report and three full post-adoption reports and submit them to Nightlight. The first report is a brief check in with the social worker after you have been home for 1 month. The second report will be completed within 6 months of your child’s arrival home and the others at 1 and 2 years after you arrive home with your child. In addition, the Ugandan courts require a self-report be provided to the court every 12 months until your child turns 18 years old. In the event that your social work report coincides with one of the self-reports due, the social work report will supersede your self-report. These reports include your child’s developmental progress and pictures. This is a very serious commitment; Nightlight is committed to showing the Ugandan government and birth families that children adopted by US citizens are healthy and well cared for. Therefore, Nightlight requires families to pay for the cost of the post adoption reports in advance.

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