It’s a question we are asked quite often. Right up there with, “Where’s Burundi?”
There’s your answer to the first question. It’s a small country that not everyone has heard about. “Why Burundi,” will require a longer answer.
We’ve worked with other cultures, kids with PTSD, “orphans” and true orphans, organizations that assist with adoption, and organizations that try to prevent the need for it. All of those experiences have led to this decision.
We knew we wanted to find a country and agency that was Hague certified and that had some framework that allowed for ethical adoptions. Burundi is a country that’s new to international adoption and set out with some of this framework. While no country is perfect when it comes to adoption (the US included), we truly believe there’s still a place for it when done well. Adoption ethics is not something we take lightly and it’s something that I continually stress about if I’m honest.
We also knew that we wanted to pick a country to which we had a connection. It’s really important to us that our child(ren) stay connected to their culture.
Josh can speak some conversational French and I’m (very slowly and poorly) attempting to learn Kirundi which I continually mix up with the little Spanish, Swahili, and Haitian Creole that I know.
We also have a lot of friends in Nashville from Burundi and surrounding countries in the region. I mentor a little girl whose mom is from Burundi and she is teaching me to cook regional food. There are churches nearby with Burundian/Congolese/Rwandan congregations too! All in all, we have the ability to maintain a connection to this culture and country which is so important to us.
In a nutshell, adoption is complex and loaded with trauma. Our hope and goal is to honor that as much as possible.