Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Congo dossier checklist

It's been a busy few weeks, but somewhere between our home visit and now we received our Congo dossier guide (Yahtzee!). The dossier (pronounced "doss-ee-ay") is, in short, a collection of legal documents. It is usually presented to the government of the country from which you are adopting at the time of your request to adopt.
Isn't the Congo's flag pretty? (And does anyone else notice
that the one on the right is lower than the one on the left? It came like that...Ah!


The dossier for the Congo is not nearly as extensive as one from most other foreign countries, but it will take us some time to complete. Below is the list of necessary documents:


The list may not seem that long (and it could definitely be worse!), but the content makes for a somewhat lengthy process. For example, we have to physically visit the Department of Health for certified birth certificates. (I suppose we could technically send a request by mail, but it seems faster to just go to the office and take care of it. I don't like to wait on the mail. Too out-of-my-control.) We also have to visit our county's Recorder of Deeds for a certified marriage certificate. You see the trend. 

We have to gather a few other legal documents and write a letter to the Congolese government, in which we describe our family, community, and home and then tell the government about our desire to adopt. We also have to take some pictures of our house, our family, etc. They request very specific pictures, in that we can't be wearing shorts/short skirts, shoulders should be covered, and we should be dressed up or in business casual attire. (This is a good excuse for us to take some pictures as a family...I don't have enough of those pics because we don't take the time to get them.)

After all documents have been gathered we have to get about 70% of the documents notarized in a very specific way. Our dossier guide spends a lot of time addressing notarization and the specific qualifications with which that the notary must comply. If the notary doesn't do it right, we have to gather documents again to redo it. 

To our notary, whomever you are, DON'T MESS IT UP! 

No pressure. 

As for the home study, we are pretty much done with it. We got our fingerprints done last Thursday and we will get our medicals this week. Zynga!! 

If you would like to follow along through our adoption process, check out this link.