Since July 2012 when Coram IAC received accreditation from the China Center for Children’s Welfare and Adoption (CCCWA) to operate the Special Needs Adoption programme in the UK, we have successfully placed many children with special needs with Coram IAC adopters. Currently Coram IAC is the only agency in the UK which is accredited to provide this service and, therefore, it is the only agency able to access the register of special needs children held in China.

China is a country which is a signatory to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in respect of Intercountry Adoption 1993 and all adoptions from China are regulated CCCWA.

The Coram IAC China Special Needs Adoption Programme allows prospective adopters, through Coram IAC, to access the Special Needs Register of children available for adoption from the People’s Republic of China. The register is accessed via the internet and a pre- match made with a child on your behalf.

The children needing homes

The children on the list are all children with special needs, over and above those that stem from having spent their early childhood in an institution.

The special needs that frequently occur are:

  • Cleft lip and palate
  • Deformation of the hands 
  • Deformation of the ear
  • Heart disease
  • Hepatitis B
  • Missing arm or leg
  • Anusatresia
  • Spina bifida
  • Blind or partially blind
  • Deaf or partially deaf
  • Hypospadia
  • Blood disorders
  • Older children over 6 years, for whom no placement as yet been found

It is important to emphasise that the severity of the conditions varies from child to child and that some children have multiple conditions. Children may have had corrective surgery in China and although requiring on going medical supervision, are able to lead relatively normal lives. Whatever their condition, being adopted into a loving, committed family is life changing for both the child and the family.

Eligibility for China

  • Both single adopters and heterosexual married couples may adopt
  • Prospective adopters must be 30 years of age
  • If a couple are adopting together and the older partner is above 50 years, the age difference between the younger partner and the adopted child must be no more than 50 years
  • The age difference between a single adoptive mother and the adopted child should be no more than 45 years.

Please see the Information Pack for details of further eligibility criteria.

Who can use the Special Programme?

Prospective adopters who wish to use the China Special Needs programme must be:

  • Eligible to adopt from China - The Coram IAC Information for Prospective Adoptive Applicants (China Special Needs Programme) provides full details of eligibility criteria
  • Approved to adopt, with advice that the approval is for a child with special needs from China
  • Resident in England, Wales, Scotland and the Isle of Man
  • Not adopting an identified child.

Prospective Adopters living outside of the Local Authorities who contract Coram IAC to undertake their assessments may need to request an assessment of their Local Authority before joining the China Special Needs programme but please speak to Coram IAC before you make an enquiry about becoming an approved adopter.

There is a charge for this service and further details concerning the service and the costs can be found in the Information for Prospective Adopters: China Special Needs Programme.

For further information about the special programme please contact the Coram IAC Advice Line.