American Couple Looking for Money to Adopt a Nigerian Child
Beth Haff recalls scanning an adoption site and being drawn to a special “waiting child.”
She said she was drawn by the girl’s big eyes.
“She’s obviously very pretty,” Haff said. “Her eyes were just kind of telling a story in the picture when I saw it.”
Haff and her husband, Shane Haff, had been seeking to adopt a child through an international adoption agency when they saw the 2-year-old Nigerian girl, named Ruthie, on the agency’s website.
Southeast Baptist Church, where Shane Haff is youth director, will have a garage sale Saturday to help the couple raise money to adopt Ruthie and bring her to Muskogee.
Beth Haff, 27, said the sale could provide a big boost in their efforts.
“When the adoption is all said and done, including fees here for our agencies, and the government, and traveling expenses, it’s going to cost about $34,000,” she said.
The Haffs, who moved to Muskogee last September, have a 2-year-old son, Allen.
“After we had Allen, we felt that even though we were done having kids biologically, we weren’t done having our family,” Beth Haff said. “We only wanted to adopt one child for now. We decided international would be the way to go.”
Shane Haff said American adoption agencies seemed to offer only infants and older children.“We wanted to adopt someone close to our son’s age,” he said.
Beth Haff said they had prepared to adopt from India, but Ruthie’s picture prompted them to adopt from Nigeria.
“The day after Thanksgiving, we saw Ruthie’s picture pop up on our agency’s waiting child list,” she said. “We got to go ahead and pursue the adoption.”
Shane Haff, 26, said he was surprised at how quickly they found a match.
“We were told by an agency it takes about a year to get matched,” he said. “We got matched with her about a week later. My head was spinning on how quickly it happened.”
The couple now must go through the governmental paperwork to secure the adoption.
Beth Haff said they cannot meet Ruthie face to face until they are cleared through the Nigerian government.
Southeast Baptist has been “incredibly supportive” in their adoption efforts, Beth Haff said.
“It really touched our hearts in a big way, because we just got here seven months ago,” she said. “Not only does the church welcome us as new staff and new family, they have gone above and beyond to make sure we know they’re behind us 110 percent on the adoption.”
Sean Haff said they could go to Nigeria in November. He said their final court date in Nigeria is Dec. 2.
Beth Haff said Nigeria only recently opened to international adoption.
“It’s all kind of new, so that’s why they have a 12-month waiting period to adopt a child,” she said. “If everything goes smoothly, we will have her home before Christmas.”