Conroy Adoption Pages
Hi we're the Conroy family - Joe, Mary Beth, Sara and Ryan (he's not the one on the right. he is currently away at college).
This site is dedicated to the adoption of our daughter's Sara from Almaty, Kazakhstan
on October 9, 2000 and the pending adoption sometime in the spring of 2003 of Sara's baby sister from China.
Most of the current content is regarding Sara's adoption approximately two years ago, more about China and the adoption of
Sara's sister ( Emma is the leading candidate right now ) will be added later.
The adoption of Sara was the culmination of a paperchase that took 4 months and included a homestudy by a social worker,
an INS application, medical exams for my wife and I and the collection of numerous other financial and personal documents and photos
into a dossier that was translated into Kazakh and sent to Kazakhstan. After approval of our application by the Ministry of Education there,
we received a formal letter of invitation and a tentative court date for the proceedings. Our adoption agency World Partners
Adoption notified us by telephone that the dossier was being accepted on friday September 8th and the official notification arrived
that Monday September 11th. With the official notification and letter of invitation came the tentative court date of October 9th.
The actual timing was a little bit of a surprise since we had though it would take longer. Our dossier had only been in Kazakhstan for a few days when
this transpired. Since Kazakh law required a minimum of two weeks of visitation before the court date, it meant
we needed to be in the country by September 25 at the latest. This gave us 2 weeks to prepare, during which we had to finish sara's room,
buy gifts for 25 people in Kazakhstan ( giving gifts to those involved in a childs care or adoption is a custom there ), get visa's to enter Russsia where we would get
permission to return home with Sara from the US embassy, get airline tickets and make all necessay arrangements for our pets and work for being away from home for
3 to 5 weeks. The timespan is because the judge in Kazakhstan can require 2 weeks additional stay after the court date before taking custody of a child. This is so that any family member
that objects can come forward. This is usually waived.
Fortunately everything came together without any major hitches and we departed for Albany Airport on September 24th for a 18 hour trip via Washington and Franfurt, Germany
to our final destination in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Our adoption agency had arranged for us to meet another couple from North Carolina at the Washington airport, that were adopting a baby girl.
The trip was uneventful but tiring. Fortunately we were able to check our luggage through to Almaty since we were carring two 85 lb duffels loading with our clothing and Sara's clothes,
some food, and the gifts which included 10 - 1lb jars of peanut butter. The time difference between the east coast and Almaty is 11 hours so we arrived Monday evening in the Almaty airport.
After clearing customs there we gathered our luggage and had to traverse a gauntlet of cab drivers to meet our driver Vitaly and a facilitator Anara who was taking care of living arrangements.
We finally arrived at the apartment sometime after midnight, Almaty time. The next morning we meet our adoption facilitator Gulbanu at the law office handling the adoption
and from there went to Baby House #3 were we met for our daughter then called Fatima Muchametzanova
( we kept Fatima as her middle name ) for the first of our two weeks of bi-daily visits.
Sara was in a group of 10 other children between the ages of 2 and 3 cared for by two caretakers. The facilities were clean but dated ( they've since been renovated ) and the children
were obviously well taken care of and cared for by the staff. There was a translator there the first day and one other day for a short time, other than that the only communication with staff was thru
the very few words of russian that we knew. Still all went well and the two weeks were very importatnt in Sara getting used to us before we rocked her world by leaving the baby house! By the end of the two weeks instead of clinging
to the caretakers when we arrived she was clinging to us when we left. The time of the court date arrived and after testimony by an official from the Department of Education and the Director
of Baby House #3 the judge asked us a few questions and then went to his chambers to write up the decree of adoption. That was October 9th, Sara's "Gotcha Day" when she was officially born in our hearts.
Sweet child of my dreams..
destined never to part
no love could be deeper...
you grew in my heart.