The Icelandic Adoption Model




The waiting time
Icelandic Adoption Society puts effort into helping applicants actively seeking knowledge during the waiting time. Every month a lecture is offered on issues related to adoptions. This year for example we have offered lectures on post-adoption depression, our work in Nordic Adoption Council and a trip the president and executive director of Icelandic Adoption Society went on with the Minister of Interior and his delegation to India in February. 

When applicants are accepted in the country of origin they attend special training, where the applicants meet at the Icelandic Adoption Society’s office and receive a course on what can happen after the adoption.

The first part is about connection between the child and the parents and what difficulties the family may face in the first period after homecoming.  The second section is about traveling with a child, what is needed and what signs the parents need to look after on long flights in unknown surroundings. The third section is about the trip to the country of origin, how to prepare and what to expect on the trip of their life. How to take care of the child, what kind of nutrition a child needs and how to make sure that the hygiene in the surroundings of the child is appropriate.   

After the parents get information about their child, they meet a pediatrician and he informs them about the child“s health status and what they can expect in near future. The family meets the pediatrician again soon after they come back to Iceland, where he examines the child (the same pediatrician has examined every child that has been adopted to Iceland since 1981).

Then the family meets a family that has adopted from the country of origin (preferably the same province). In this meeting the family gets familiar with the procedure and what will happen on their trip. Then the family meets a specialist from Icelandic Adoption Society that explains all the practicalities.

Post Adoption Services

When the family arrives in Iceland they have to apply for a social security number at the National Registry and confirmation of the adoption papers by National Commissioner on Adoption, with the help of Icelandic Adoption Society.

The family meets a pediatrician at the National Hospital for a medical check up.

A specialist makes contact by phone after the family has been at home for a week to offer help if needed and to assess if the family needs some kind of assistance. The family is offered interviews with a social worker if needed. 

The family is contacted again after the family has been at home for one month and again after three months, with the same purpose. 

Icelandic Adoption Society has family mornings every other week were the families come together at our premises and have a nice time together. The adoptive families like these family mornings and meet each other in the odd week at swimming pools or at the families residence. 

Icelandic Adoption Society employs social workers who meet the families and write the post-placement reports. If the families face some troubles we have professional team of social workers and child psychologist that are assigned to the family.