What is LHI Orphan Hosting Program?

LHI Orphan Hosting Programs are for 4 weeks during the summer (typically from late June to late July) and our Christmas holiday program is 4 weeks during the winter (typically from early December to early January).  These programs provide adoptable children an amazing opportunity to be loved by a family and see life outside their orphanage, but more importantly, it connects potential forever families to these older orphans who may never have had a chance at being part of a family.

Our goal is for ALL of our children to be adopted after their first host trip, whether it is by their host family, their host family’s extended family members, community members, or friends.  We strongly encourage our host families to commit to working with us in advocacy efforts for their host child.  As the host family, you will become an expert on your host child, and will be able to offer valuable information about him or her!  Therefore, we will need your help in our quest to find permanency for the child.

Who can apply to host a child and what are the requirements?

  • Must be at least 30 years of age
  • Can be married couples or single woman
  • Must provide Statewide Criminal Record / FBI Fingerprints / Child Abuse clearances
  • Must complete a home safety visit by a licensed social worker
  • Must complete a mandatory pre-hosting training
  • Full payment of hosting fees according to schedule
  • Must have a stable income
  • Must be in good health with no major medical or psychological concerns

Who are the children?

The China Center for Children’s Welfare and Adoption (CCCWA) determines the children who are available for hosting.  Most children are between the ages of 5-12, with mild to moderate medical and developmental special needs.  Some children under the age of 5 may be available for hosting.

What are the hosting fees and what do the fees cover?

Keep in mind ALL fees paid for hosting program are considered tax-deductible donations.

Total hosting fees are $2,200.00 per hosted child.  The fees cover the cost of children’s passports, visas, medical insurance, and round-trip transportation from China to the United States for all children and chaperone/translators.

Additional Expenses:

Home safety visit (around $300.00; varies by states and agency).

Criminal/FBI fingerprint/child abuse background clearances (around $50.00; varies by state). **

Online pre-hosting training – Adoption Learning Partners ($179.00). **

Host a chaperone (a caretaker or orphanage staff come to support the children during the program).  There are NO FEES to host a chaperone, you just need to provide a spare bedroom and food.

Clothes for children (gently used are fine).

Living expenses while the child is in your home.

Travel for arrival and departure to a specific domestic airport to pickup/return child (if applicable).

** Can apply toward a future adoption process

Can the hosting program fees be refunded?

All host families must understand that they will not receive a refund for hosting fees.  However, if you do not receive a match and would like to participate in the next hosting program, your paid money can be transferred and used for the next program fees.

How and when can I be matched with a child?

Registered families will be provided a link via email to view our children’s photo listings.  There will be a brief bio on each child.  Select a child to host, then simply contact our hosting director Philip Lam at 215-540-8810 or email him at plam@livinghopeintl.org.  He will be happy to assist you at every step of your journey.

Will the children have health insurance?

Each child will be covered by a group travel plan for the duration of their stay in the U.S. Please note this insurance policy is only to be used in the event of a medical emergency and cannot be used for general care clinics, hospital visits, or physician appointments.  In the case of emergency, please take your host child ONLY to a hospital emergency for evaluation and medical treatment.  Contact and report to the hosting coordinator immediately and be sure to keep all original invoices and receipts.  Forward all invoices and receipts to the hosting coordinator, and LHI will take care of the bills.

Who are the chaperones?

Chaperones are caretakers or orphanage staff members who come to support the children during the program.  They will work to ensure that the children have a safe visit and assist with the communication.  There is no fee required to host a chaperone, you just need to provide a spare bedroom and food.

What if a child needs to be moved from my home?

This rarely happens. We ask all host families to give their hosted children a minimum of a week to adjust to the new time difference, their new surroundings, and their host family before considering moving the child.  Keep in mind that when children are in unfamiliar surroundings, seeing strange faces, and dealing with jet lag at the same time, it is not uncommon that they will be extremely restless, crying much and refusing to be comforted.  This may last for a few days.

However, it is sometimes in the best interest of the host child and host family to move a host child to another home. This is not a decision that should be made in an instant; it should be discussed in depth with the Program Coordinator, Director, host family, and the chaperone.  A few dramatic moments or miscommunications are not reason to move your hosted child.  The host family is not permitted to move a child without permission to any home other than one that LHI has pre-approved as a backup family.

If your child needs to be removed from your home and placed in another home or returned to China, you will be responsible for the cost of airfare for your hosted child and chaperone/translator to relocate.

What if my family wants to adopt?

If your family is interested in pursuing the adoption of a child you have met through the hosting experience, please contact Living Hope Adoption Agency at 215-540-8999.  A LHAA social worker will discuss and assess your family’s adoption eligibility.  A child’s eligibility for adoption can only be confirmed after they return to China.  All children in the hosting program have been individually assigned to Living Hope Adoption Agency; therefore, all adoptions should be processed through LHAA.

Can we openly discuss adoption with our hosted child?

There is no guarantee that you will be able to adopt the child you host.  A child’s eligibility for adoption will be confirmed after they return to China.  Therefore, please do NOT discuss adoption with your hosted child during his or her stay.

Will we need to provide cloths and shoes for the hosted child, or will they bring their own?

The children will only be arriving with a small backpack and what they are wearing.  The child’s height and foot length will be provided to your family before the child’s arrival so that you can prepare clothing for your hosted child accordingly.  Please feel free to collect gently used clothing for your child from your church and friends.

Are the hosted children allowed to bring anything back with them when they return to China?

A few outfits or small gifts will be appropriate for your hosted child to bring back to China.  Please do not spoil or overwhelm your child with gifts.  Please keep in mind these children are coming from orphanages and did not have many toys or clothing growing up.  Please also be mindful of the other children at the orphanages who were unable to come to the United States.  Children might compete or compare gifts they received.