Carla Azhderian’s family is not traditional. In addition to the children with blood ties, she also adopted some by heart.
They already had four biological children when they decided to expand the clan in 2006. The first international adoption process was in Guatemala. They saw a photo of a girl at risk and immediately felt like she could share their home. Unfortunately, before finalizing the legal process, she was shot and died.
But the couple did not give up. They went to Ethiopia, where they adopted a one-year-old girl. Then another Ghanaian girl, then a Polish boy. “Every time we adopted we thought we were going to stop, but we kept going to these countries and seeing the need… So we thought, ‘well, we have room for one more.’ And the rest of the family always agrees,” Azhderian told the BBC. “But it got harder as time went on. I would say that every time you go to a non-Hague country (referring to countries that have not ratified the 1993 convention on intercountry adoption), there is always corruption and ethical issues. It became more complicated to adopt”.
Now, Carla is in Kiev, the capital of Ukraine, to finalize a year-long adoption process. Also waiting for the end of this process is Serhiy, 11 years old, who was removed from the war zone in the south of the country shortly after the beginning of the conflict, in 2014.
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