Adoption of the Heart – information

Adoption of the Heart – questions & answers

Adoption of the Heart is a program supporting education of children in Africa and in Third World countries.

Every child has right to education, and money should not be an obstacle to achieve that. In Africa however, it is so. The system of social assistance is not sufficient enough to enable the parents to pay the school fee, to buy school uniforms, which are obligatory in Africa, school accessories, cover the commuting costs and, optionally, boarding school costs in case of high school.

In some institutions in extremely bad condition, a yearly cost of child’s maintenance includes also the yearly cost of breakfast (Tanzania).

A hungry child cannot learn anything…

For details about adoption in Cameroon please click HERE, and for details on adoption in Tanzania click HERE.
You can find children that are currently waiting for an Adopting Parent here: They are waiting – You can help, too!

If you want to help a child, please read carefully the information on this page.
Please, read also about the details of adoption in Cameroon and Tanzania on corresponding pages.
Take a look at the page: “They are waiting for help

The most important questions and answers connected with Adoption of the Heart.

1. What is Adoption of the Heart? (Adoption at a distance)
2. Who can become an Adopting Parent? How can I become an Adopting Parent?
3. Can I adopt more than one child? Can I adopt siblings?
4. Can I choose a child?
5. How long do I have to wait for the first data about the child? What is included in the child’s documentation?
6. How much does it cost to adopt a child?
7. Do I have to pay yearly in advance? Can I pay monthly?
8. Which currency do I have to pay in? How to calculate the fee?
9. What is the bank account number to pay the fee?
10. When do I pay the first fee? What should I write in the heading of the transfer?
11. How can I contact the child?
12. Can the adopted child be changed in the course of the program?
13. Can send a letter to the child?
14. Can I send a parcel to the child? What should I put into the letter / parcel?
15. What address should I send the letters and parcels to?
16. For how long do I have to pay? What if my financial situation becomes worse and I am no longer able to participate in the program?
17. How does the child receive the money? Does the child receive the money in cash? What about the program’s costs?
18. Can I pay less than the amount of the yearly fee?
19. What happens if I pay more than the fee required? What happens to the excess amount of money?
20. Can I transfer money for e.g. a birthday present or Christmas gift?
21. Are the institutions described here the only ones participating in the program Adoption of the Heart? How can I be sure that the money is well spent and why are there so many adopting fees?

1. What is Adoption of the Heart? (Adoption at a distance)

First of all, it is a program enabling the children to go to school and to get education, and also, in most cases, it provides the food for them. Under the program an individual helps a specific child, supports their school education, and, optionally, provides meals because a hungry child cannot learn anything. The children are orphans or children form extremely poor families, depending on the country and a particular missionary outpost.

2. Who can become an Adopting Parent? How can I become an Adopting Parent?

Every individual who is aware of the responsibility for other people and who wants to act for the benefit of African children can become an Adopting Parent. Adoption of the Heat is mainly a financial commitment and you should remember that.
In case of schools, companies and groups of people adopting a child, it is important that one person should be assigned to the Adoption, be in contact with us and give information to other people.
A minor also can become an Adopting Parent provided that one of his/her parents will be the person responsible for the contact with us and the parents confirm that they are aware of the financial commitment.
If you want to help a child, please read carefully the information on this page. Please read also about the details of adoption in Cameroon and Tanzania on the corresponding pages.
Look at the page “They are waiting for help?” and select a child. You can choose the sex, country and the age of a child. E-mail us at adopcja@majaprzyszlosc.org.pl and tell us whom you would like to help. We will reply sending you a photo of the child, and some additional information about the child and a Parent’s declaration – declaration of financial obligation. Please fill in the Parent’s declaration and send it back by snail mail. Then you will receive from us the form containing full information about the child.

3. Can I adopt more than one child? Can I adopt siblings?

You can adopt more than one child. It all depends on the Parent’s financial capacity. The program is also dedicated to siblings from extremely poor families, bigger families and to several forms of a particular school. If you wish, you can also support siblings.

4.Can I choose a child?

In response to your requests to make conscious decisions, apart from the name and address of the child, we also give you two additional details about the child. You can make the decision on the basis of this data. The first piece of information is the child’s sex, because it might be easier for a person who has a daughter to send clothes for an adopted girl, or maybe someone who has 3 sons would like to adopt a girl, for a change. The second piece of information is age / school form of the child, because the fee and time span of the adoption program depend largely on these data.

5. How long do I have to wait for the first data about the child? What is included in the child’s documentation?

Currently we have children waiting to be adopted in the year 2013. Information on the children from particular countries can be found on the page: “They are waiting for your help”
After having chosen a child, please send us an e-mail with the information about the child’s name, age/school form and country. Within 2-3 working days you will receive an e-mail from us with the declaration of adoption of the chosen child, the child’s photos (silhouette and face) and a form with information about the child, their family and environment.

6. How much does it cost to adopt a child?

The adoption costs are different depending on the institution. We do not generalize, we cover the costs in currency and according to the calculations made by missionary sisters of a particular institution.
Details concerning the costs (exact amounts) can be found in corresponding links Cameroon or Tanzania. Sometimes the fees are different because of the age of children in a particular institution in a particular country.

7. Do I have to pay yearly in advance? Can I pay monthly?

It is the easiest for us if the fee is paid yearly in advance and if it is made within the first 3 months of calendar year (January- March). It enables us to send the money to the mission as soon as possible and use the money in accordance to the child’s needs. Thanks to that, we know from the beginning that the Parent remembers about the child and the commitment.

It is not always possible to pay yearly. That is why we also accept monthly fees (1 month fee), quarterly fees (3x monthly fee), and half-year fees (6 x monthly fee). While transferring the money it is important to type into the form the following details: the period of time of the fee transferred, the child’s file number, first name and surname of the child, and the words: adoption and donation.

8. Which currency do I have to transfer the money in? How to calculate the fee?

You should transfer the money in PLN, and the amount of money depends on Euro selling rate (for Cameroon) or USD selling rate (for Tanzania) on a given day.
Before you transfer the money you should check the current exchange rate of particular currency.
After multiplication of the amount of the fee you will get the amount of money to transfer.

Multiplication example:
a particular adoption fee 16.70 EUR per month, quarterly fee.
16.70 x 3 = 50.10 EUR x 4.30 PLN (euro selling rate on a given day) = 215.43 PLN
We round up to full PLN, which means a quarterly fee is 216 PLN

You can check the USD and EUR selling rate on the Alior Bank website: EXCHANGE RATE TABLE

9. What is the bank account number to pay the fee?

You should transfer the money into the Foundation’s bank account number in Alior bank
PLN 65 2490 0005 0000 4520 4418 9818

It is a PLN account. After having received the money from you, the Foundation transfers the money in the legal currency (EUR-USD) to a particular missionary outpost.

10. When do I pay the first fee? What should I write in the heading of the transfer?

The first transfer should be made after reception of the child’s photo and file number, and after sending back to the Foundation via snail mail the declaration of financial commitment which you will receive form us after you send us an e-mail with the information about the intent of adoption.

The transfer heading is:

Adoption of the Heart, name and surname of the child, file number, the period of time of the transferred fee-donation.
Example: Adoption of the Heart, Jaś Kowalski, KYXX, quarterly fee – donation.

11. How can I contact the child?

You receive the main information about the child from the Foundation at least once a year. The main form of contact is correspondence. You send the letters directly to the missionary outpost. The Foundation does not serve as an intermediary when it comes to sending letters from Poland.

Letters and pictures from the children, children forms and photos are sent in collective parcels to the Foundation. Because of the costs, you receive them from us when they have reached the country, which can take from 6 weeks to 3 months. Sometimes parcels travel even 6 to 8 months if they are not sent as registered letter (air mail), but as economic mail (ships).

Some children write letters very rarely, and letters can travel for long time so the contact is largely symbolic.

However do not get discouraged and please do write to your child. For many of them it is the first letter in their life and contact with a different reality.

Letters should be written in English (Tanzania) or French (Cameroon). You are likely to find people around you who can help you translate the letters. Optionally, if it is necessary, send the letter content by e-mail to the Foundation. We will try to help you translate the letter.

12. Can the adopted child be replaced in the course of the program?

Yes, it can. In fact, unfortunately, it is not rare. The program does not keep a family in one place.
Sometimes a family leaves the hut they live in and move to another place, and we loose contact with the child. No one consults the missionary sister about it. In such situation we encourage the Parent to adopt some other child with whom we have direct contact and who is dear to us. The Parent often accepts the change. The money left on the account of the previous child is given to the new one. However, you can leave the program if you don’t like such change. We’ll try to inform you about the children leaving the program as soon as possible, but sometimes it takes a few weeks before the sister, e.g. when bringing gifts or paying a visit, notices the hut being left.

13. Can I send a letter to the child?

As it was written above – letters and parcels depend on you. The Foundation is not an intermediary due to financial limitations.
Please put into the bubble envelope a note with a detailed description of the content and a detailed list of things in the parcel. It can enable us to localize the parcel in case the sender address becomes illegible during the journey.

If you want to send your picture, send a photo with nature in the background, or taken at a place that a child is able to understand in the background.
Please keep in mind that the aim of the Adoption is to help with a child’s education. The relationship with the child is spontaneous, so please be careful not to raise hope for e.g. leaving Africa by a child, etc. It is not possible for a child to come to the Parent’s country. Some children have dreams (e.g. to have a bicycle) and writing about those dreams can sometimes be confusing for you if it was not the intention of your letter. The Foundation does not interfere with the content of correspondence and we are not going to remove such information from the letters. We just want to urge you that such problems can occur.

14. Can I send a parcel to the child? What should I put into the letter/ parcel?

As it was written above – letters and parcels depend on you. The foundation is not an intermediary due to financial limitations.
Please put into the bubble envelope a note with a detailed description of the content and a detailed list of things in the parcel which can enable us to localize the parcel in case the sender address becomes illegible.

While considering sending the parcel you have to remember the following: postal charges in Poland are very expensive, there is no 100% guarantee that the parcel is going to be delivered or that it is going to be delivered as a whole (especially economical or big parcels). There are no fixed charges for the reception of the parcel at a delivery place, so sometimes a subjective decision of a customs officer about the charge can make the parcel’s reception financially not viable. Recently, Africa has experienced the so-called “flood of cheap Chinese products”. So you can buy there many cheap products, too. Some things can be bought there but many of them are not of good quality. Yet, the need of sending a parcel and the joy of the child when receiving the parcel make many Parents send the parcels.

However, you should take into consideration the practical side and welfare of the children while sending a parcel with particular content:

In kind donations: If sweets (no chocolate! it will melt during the transport) are sent in a letter (a bubble envelope), they will not last the journey and will attract rats and other pests. If you send sweets, please remember that there is more than one child living in a missionary outpost. So it is better to send a package of candies than one expensive bar. If you send instant pudding, please choose one that can be made with water, not milk.

Children will appreciate books in English or French (depending on the country) that are suitable for their age, inflatable balloons or balls (not inflated, to reduce the volume, but accompanied with a hand pump), small toys, notebooks, crayons, pencils, jigsaw puzzles, cards, coloring books, plasticine, modelling clay, colorful scarves, rubber bands and hair fasteners (for girls), clothes, socks, sport shoes such as sneakers.

15. What address should I send the letters and parcels to?

A parcel / letter should have the address on it, and any additional information should be placed inside – to avoid overestimated custom duties. On the package of the parcel/letter you should only include name of the missionary outpost, name of the missionary sister and information that it is a donation for the mission / charity (for the exact wording, please see below).

Inside the bubble envelope or a parcel you should put a note with a detailed description of the content and a detailed list of the things in the parcel. It will make easier for the sister to confirm the reception of the parcels in case the sender address becomes illegible during the journey.
Packages to Cameroon should have an annotation “DON POUR LA MISSION”, which means Donation for the Mission. Please put inside a note with a list of things in the package, detailed guidelines how to share its content (in case it is not just for one person), and write: FOR S. ALINA. The address is:

Communauté des Soeurs de ST.Dominique

B.P. 185 c/ 446 Procure Yaoundé
Cameroon-Afrique

Packages to Tanzania should have an annotation: CHARITY FOR MISSION. Please put inside a note with a list of things in the package, detailed guidelines how to share its content (in case it is not just for one person), and write: FOR S. RUT. The address is:

zawadi kwa watoto-MJI WA Huruma
P.O. Box 1029
Musoma, Tanzania, East Africa

16. For how long do I have to pay? What if my financial situation becomes worse and I am no longer able to participate in the program?

Adoption of the Heart is a long-term commitment, and if you take this commitment you should think a few years ahead. It enables you to make friends with a child and give them some stabilization.
However, this commitment is a moral obligation, not a liability. If you cease to help a child, you do not bear any legal consequences. But a sudden lack of help is a tragedy for a child because it means the necessity of leaving school and loss of hope for a better life. Thus, if you want to leave the program, please, inform us in advance so that we can have enough time to find another Parent for the child.

17. How does the child receive the money? Does the child receive the money in cash? What about the program’s costs?

In Cameroon the adoption costs are 200 and 250 EUR and they include a child’s education, school uniform and school supplies. In Tanzania the cost of 300 USD also includes yearly breakfast costs. The money is not given directly to the children nor to their parents, but the mission outpost provides for the continuity of education and the food, depending on the institution.

The foundation gives the money in instalments, according to order of payment for a given purpose.
Because both missionary outposts are new and have no financial security, the fee also includes help for the outposts connected with operating costs of the adoption program. As you can read in the declaration: “12% of the fee cover the administrative costs. At the moment both outposts start the adoption program. That is why, except for the basic costs covering school supplies, purchase and maintenance of office equipment, printing services, Internet site, the Foundation is also obliged to cover the missionary outposts costs including the Internet, which is necessary to communicate with the Foundation and the Parents, paper, ink, and other costs specified by missionary sisters and accepted after receiving cost calculations of the adoption program and banking costs (commission), postal charges, costs of searching for Parents, children pictures and other costs connected with running the program Adoption of the Heart in Poland and in missionary outposts. When the missionary outposts reach the financial security, the percent of the amount will be reduced.”

All of this money is spend only on the implementation of the objectives of the program Adoption of the Heart. All Foundation’s costs will be presented in the annual balance sheet for the year 2012 and the report of activities in April 2013.

18.Can I pay less than the amount of the yearly fee?

Sometimes Parents pay less than the yearly fee. If the underpayment amount is between ten and twenty PLN and the cases are not frequent, the Foundation has the possibility to cover this kind of underpayment. But it often means that these people cease to pay anyway. Thus, as it was written above, please inform us if the underpayment is not a result of underestimation or oversight, but a result of planned action and financial difficulties. Then we will be able to help you and the child in advance.

19. What happens if I pay more than the fee required? What happens to the excess amount of money?

The money is given to the mission outpost, along with the excess amount. First of all, it is spent to cover additional needs of a particular child and its family, siblings who do not participate in the program (if there are any). Next, it is spent to cover the needs of other children, especially of those who do not have an adopting parent or whose Parent has not paid the fee and it could harm the child. We pay for their school and food. We try not to favor any children, not to buy a lot of additional things so not to make other children feel jealous or treated unfairly because of the fact that some parents pay only the basic fee and others can provide additional financial help.

20. Can I transfer money e.g. for a birthday present or a Christmas gift?

There is such possibility, but the deadline for such transfer is a month before the occasion (e.g. transfers of money for Christmas should be made till the end of November). Only then is there a chance that missionary sisters are able to buy the presents on time. Taking into consideration the information included in the previous point, we try to share the means equally and not to favor any of the children. So, we usually authoritatively set the amount of money spent on small gifts (e.g. for a birthday gift: a blanket, a school bag or a set of clothes it is 20 USD / 15 EUR), or on food.

21. Are the institutions described here the only ones participating in the program Adoption of the Heart? How can I be sure that the money is well spent and why are the adopting fees so different?

The Adoption of the Heart is largely based on trust. However, you have the addresses of the outposts, information about the missionary sisters, children can send letters, and we try to document the parcels, also on photographs. We will try to send you copies of the school certificates as a proof that the children really attend the school (at the discretion of missionary sisters, first school certificates can be sent in 2013).

There are a lot of missionary outposts in the world, at least several in each African country, and a lot of congregations and institutions running such programs. Adoption of the Heart is a world-wide initiative. Such programs are organized in places where children are left alone without any social assistance, hungry and with no prospects for the future. If one person helps a child from a missionary outpost in Cameroon, it does not mean that the other person’s child from Cameroon comes from the same outpost.

If you haven’t found the answer for your question in the above information, or if you need some additional information, please e-mail us at: adopcja@majaprzyszlosc.org.pl. We will try to help you and answer your questions as soon as possible.