Saturday, October 06, 2007

The Trees in the Forest of China's Abandonments I

Over the next several months, I will be posting essays taken from an in-depth study presented this month in the Netherlands. This first segment sets the stage for our analysis of the children submitted for international adoption by the majority of orphanages in 2006. The next segment will be posted October 21st.

All of us are familiar with the finding histories of our own children. We see, as it were, a single tree in a large forest. One of my daughters was found at two days old in front of a government building. Is that common? We don't usually know how the stories of our children compares with the thousands of others unless we get above the forest and look down from above. That is what we will do in the following essays. We will look at the gender, health and age of all of the children submitted for international adoption in 2006. We will also look at where they were found, discovering which locations are the most common. Does the calendar play a role in child abandonment? The answer may surprise you. At the conclusion of our study we will have a very good idea of where birth families abandon their children, at what age, and what role the sex of the child plays in abandonment.

For this study, I have calculated the number of files submitted by each Province involved in the international adoption program for 2006 to provide families with an idea of which areas submit the majority of children. In order of files submissions (highest to lowest), here is the listing for 2006:

Jiangxi = 2,401
Guangdong = 1,935
Hunan - 955
Guangxi 901
Chongqing = 838
Hubei = 665
Anhui = 468
Yunnan = 346
Jiangsu = 337
Liaoning = 293
Shanxi = 249
Henan = 196
Shaanxi = 193
Guizhou = 184
Gansu = 177
Fujian = 161
Sichuan = 114
Zhejiang = 113
Mongolia = 95

Unmentioned Provinces (Xinjiang, Shandong, Ningxia, etc.) submitted less than 100 children for international adoption, and are not tracked.

The Provinces listed above submitted a total of 10,621 files to the CCAA in 2006, over 95% of the total submitted for all of China. This sampling will give us an extremely accurate view of what is happening in China.

Next: Sex & Health ratios of children submitted in each Province


Stinky Mouse said...

We adopted our son Kai from the Baoding SWI in the Hebei province. I know there is also an SWI that participates in the international adoption program in Shijiazhuang, the provincial capital of Hebei, yet this province isn't on your counted list or your list of excluded provinces.

Research-China.Org said...

I didn't list all of the excluded Provinces, but they would be Xinjiang, Qinghai, Ningxia, Hebei, Shandong, Jilin, and Heilongjiang and Hainan Island. Additionally, Beijing and Shanghai Municipalities also didn't get counted. Each of these areas submitted less than 100 files in 2006, and most were below 50.

Anonymous said...

Where, exactly, do these numbers come from for each province?

Research-China.Org said...

An important step to submitting a child for international adoption is the publication of a newspaper finding ad transferring legal custody of a child to the State. These notices allow one to track how many children are being submitted for adoption.

In addition to finding data, one can also determine the health, sex, and age of each child.


Anonymous said...

How can you determine the health of a child based solely on a finding ad?

Are you saying that you've hand-counted EACH finding ad that is included in your 10,000 children? Is that how you've determined the numbers?

Do the finding ads actually give an estimated age of the child at abandonment, or at the time of placement of the ad, or?

We adopted prior to finding ads being placed, hence my questions.

Research-China.Org said...

Yes, we "hand" counted each ad, inputting the data into a very large spread sheet. The ads give a description of each child, including detailing any special need. They also give information on how old the child was when found.

They are powerful sources iof information, individually and collectively.


Monica said...

I know you have some good sources for your knowledge, but we were just in Shanxi this past May and learned that, until this year, Shanxi did little more than 1 international adoption a month. This year, it has jumped to 3-5 a month, but little more than that. So how can Shanxi be responsible for some 250 IA files if Shanxi does no more than (varying from) 12 to 36-60 adoptions a year?


Research-China.Org said...

Shanxi Province submitted 249 children for international adoption in 2006. Of that total, 27% (11%) were healthy children. The vast majority of children were SN boys.

In other words, you source could be correct that only 36-60 children were adopted in 2006. Submissions does not equal adoptions, especially in the case of SN children. For that reason, SN children represents a growing problem for China.

Thanks for writing!