East-West Church & Ministry Report
Vol. 9, No. 2, Spring 2001, Covering the Former Soviet Union and Central and Eastern Europe

A Sampling of Internet Resources on Post-Soviet Children at Risk

Jena Gaston and Mark Elliott, Compilers

Editor's Note: For valuable lists of links to organizations and reports dealing with post-Soviet orphans and street children, visit the following Web sites: Beeson Divinity School Global Center--http://www.samford.edu/groups/global/links/childrenatrisk-ee; Rainbows of Hope--http://www.wec-international.org/rainbows/links.htm; and Eastern European Adoption Coalition--wysiwyg://32/http://www.russianadoption.org/charity.htm.

CoMission for Children at Risk
The goal of the CoMission for Children at Risk (CCR) is to facilitate effective partnerships among Christ-centered organizations whose efforts can change the lives of orphans and street children around the world. This Web site supports an excellent Intranet service (http://comission.intranets.com/) for organizations and individuals with an interest in street children, orphanage sponsorship, post-orphanage transition centers, foster care, micro-enterprise development, summer camp programs, humanitarian aid/relief, adoption assistance, educational resources, and legislative reform. Plans are underway to place much of the CCR Intranet documentation on its Internet site.

Eastern European Adoption Coalition (EEAC)
This New Jersey-based organization, founded in 1996, has over 5,000 participants in a range of Internet discussion listservs. These "mailing lists," as EEAC calls them, cover Bulgaria, Kazakhstan, Russia, Romania, Ukraine, post-adoption support, single adopters, and special needs issues. Its "Book Store" encompasses the culture and history of EEAC countries, as well as literature on adoption. The site is especially strong on medical and psychological data, research, and health care contacts relating to children adopted from Eastern Europe.

The European Children's Trust
The Web site of this London-based charity stresses alternatives to institutionalization of children at risk in post-Soviet societies. Find here all back issues of its informative newsletter, Going Home; Richard Carter's The Silent Crisis: The Impact of Poverty on Children in Eastern Europe and the Former Soviet Union, excerpted on the Global Center Web site; and a thorough, 52-page examination of children at risk in the Balkan's most impoverished state: Rachel Rowland's New Opportunities: Improving Child-Care Services for Albania's Children (November 2000).

Holt International Children's Services
Holt, which pioneered inter-country adoptions in the United States beginning with Korean War orphans in the 1950s, hosts a Web site with a variety of helpful resources: the text and extensive commentary on the pathbreaking Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption; U.S. intercountry adoption statistics; comprehensive listings and definitions for "Adoption Terminology" and "Positive Adoption Language"; Info-Updates, providing regular coverage of adoption news; descriptions of Holt projects in Romania and Russia, including a $4.2 million USAID-funded program "Assistance to Russian Orphans"; and in collaboration with Amazon.com, a well-stocked bookstore with descriptions and order information, organized under four headings: pre-adoption, post-adoption, children's books on adoption, and books on the cultural heritage of adoptees.

MiraMed Institute
MiraMed Institute, founded in 1991 by Seattle-based physician Dr. Juliette Engel, sponsors charitable projects and trips for the benefit of Russian orphanages and research on Russian children at risk. A sampling of especially noteworthy MiraMed efforts highlighted on its Web site include the MiraMed Independent Living Center in Moscow for 15- to 23-year-old orphans; Orphanage Job Training Enterprise Programs in Russia; and Ending the Sexual Trafficking of Girls (funded by the United Nations and USAID). Several reports based on MiraMed research on the sexual exploitation of women, including orphan graduates, may be downloaded from this Web site.

National Adoption Information Clearinghouse (NAIC)
Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, this attractive, award-winning site provides a wide array of practical information, including a fair amount specifically on inter-country adoptions from post-Soviet countries, or useful to individuals adopting from these countries. The NAIC Web site features 27 topical, annotated bibliographies with abstracts of books and articles (examples: "Post-Institutionalization and the Internationally Adopted Child" and "Attachment Disorder"); 32 fact sheets (examples: "Intercountry Adoption" and "Adopting a Child with Special Needs"); individual directories of agencies placing children from Russia (28), Romania (36), Bulgaria (24), and Latvia (8); Russian and East European adoption resources; a directory of adoption-related newsletters and magazines; and an impressive bibliographic database with search capacity (a keyword search using "Romania" identified 44 titles with abstracts while use of "Russia" identified 28 citations (examples: "Risk and Protective Factors in Children Adopted from the Former Soviet Union," 2000, and "Adopting From Russia: A Language and Parenting Guide," 1999). Also of interest is a list of famous adoptees (www.calib.com/naic/pubs/r_famous.htm).

Reader's Guide to Adoption-Related Literature
An outstanding, regularly updated, annotated bibliography of English-language commercial books (no government reports) on adoption. The compiler, William L. Gage, has divided the list by subject categories, including international adoption--general and juvenile (examples: John H. MacLean, Russian Adoption: How to Adopt a Child from Russia, Ukraine, and Kasakstan [sic], 2000, 283 pp., $18.95 from amazon.com; and Sylvia Rohde, Adoption is Okay, 1999, 14 pp., $14.95 from Tapestry Books, in English and Russian, for ages 3 to 10.)

Viva Network
Viva Network (1994-), based in Oxford, England, facilitates and supports the formation of networks for Christians working with children at risk around the world. Its founder, Patrick McDonald, is the author of Reaching Children in Need (Eastbourne, England: Kingsway Publications, 2000), published in the U.S. as Children at Risk: Networks in Action (Monrovia, CA: MARC, 2000). Viva Network's very impressive Web site includes over 100 short essays on subjects relating to children at risk, from "Addictions" to "Low Esteem" to "Street Life" to "War Victims"; hotlinks to relevant published news articles; a directory of agencies including name, full contact information, contact person, and purpose statement; an excellent resources directory with subheadings for public awareness tools, teaching resources, reports, (30 listed on street children alone), planning aids, and books on the biblical basis for work with children at risk. Each entry includes an annotation, cost, and order information. Viva Network produces a quarterly, Reaching Children at Risk (£10/$17 per year), and has published a Trainer's Directory and Jobs for Life, a manual on vocational training for children at risk. Viva Network also facilitated the formation in 1998 of the Oxford-based Council of International Children's Ministries (www.viva.org/cicm).

Jena Gaston and Mark Elliott, compilers, "A Sampling of Internet Resources on Post-Soviet Children at Risk," East-West Church & Ministry Report 9 (Spring 2001), 7-8.

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© 2001 East-West Church and Ministry Report
ISSN 1069-5664

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