Eighty Haitian Orphans Unite with Adoptive Families at Miami Hotel

Jan 21, 2010, 16:18 ET from Bethany Christian Services

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., Jan. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Eighty orphans from earthquake-ravaged Haiti are scheduled to arrive at Miami International Airport tonight, Thursday, January 21, at 9:40 p.m., and will be united for the first time with their adoptive parents.

The January 12th earthquake devastated the Haitian nation and also disrupted thousands of adoptions that were in process.  Eighty of these in-process adoptions will be closer to completion once the "Haiti 80" join their new families in the United States.  Of the 80 children, 58 came to the U.S. through Bethany Christian Services (www.Bethany.org), the nation's largest adoption agency.

Immediately following the earthquake, Bethany began working with its orphanage partner in Haiti, God's Littlest Angels (www.glahaiti.org), and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to bring the orphans to their adoptive families in the U.S.  The children's flight is scheduled to depart Haiti at 7:40 p.m. local time and arrive in Miami at 9:40 p.m. EST.

"All of these children escaped from this tragedy unharmed, but it is important to remember that there are hundreds of thousands of others who still remain in Haiti," said Pam Harrington, director of international adoption services for Bethany.  "Bethany's hope for any new orphans is to help them stay in Haiti where and when it makes sense, and to help them find a new life with loving families."

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recently announced a temporary Humanitarian Parole policy, which allows orphaned children from Haiti to enter the United States on an individual basis to ensure that they receive the care they need.  Bethany is participating in this program in the organizations ongoing support of international recovery efforts after last week's devastating earthquake.

Bethany Christian Services is a member of the National Council For Adoption (NCFA), which is committed to preventing child trafficking during times of crisis and premature adoptions of vulnerable children who may have been separated from their families by this tragedy.

Bethany Christian Services is a Christ-centered, not-for-profit, pro-life, adoption agency with more than 75 locations in 32 states and orphan care and other ministries in more than a dozen countries.  Bethany is the largest adoption agency in the country and placed 1,709 children nationwide in 2008. In addition to adoption services, Bethany provides pregnancy counseling, family counseling, foster care programs, refugee services, orphan care, and an infertility ministry called Stepping Stones. Bethany was founded in 1944 and is headquartered in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

SOURCE Bethany Christian Services