Adoption Training


We feel your excitement with you as you embark on your adoption journey! We hope that this will be a positive experience for you. We want to help you be as fully prepared as possible for your international adoption. Here at West Sands we believe education is empowering, and we require all post adoptive parents complete training in several steps. Even if you have adopted previously or have completed other training through another adoption service provider new training will be required. Our agency also requires you to complete training that covers the time and topics required by the Hague law under 22 CFR 96.48.

Please complete the following checklist of Hague training requirements:

Complete “Because They Waited” 10-hour DVD and online training course from Heart of the Matter Seminars.  Cost of the training is $149 per couple. When you have completed this course, you will each receive a certificate of completion from Heart of the Matter Seminars. You will need to send us a copy of your certificates (for each spouse) for us to place in your file.                 Click here for more information.

West Sands Adoptions requires all China Adoptive families to attend Heart of the Matter’s new China Specific Webinar. The cost of this online training is only $35 and provides cultural specific information for all China Adoptive Families. Click Here for more information.

West Sands Adoptions requires all Ethiopia Adoptive Families to attend Heart of the Matter’s new Africa Specific training seminar.  The cost of this online training is only $35 and provides training specific to African Adoptions, including Ethiopia, and covers the following topics:  Legal Process, Making Sense of why a child was placed, Common Medical Issues, Skin & Hair, and Race and Culture issues specific to African Adoptions.  Click here for more information.

Read the country-specific Culture Gram on your child’s country of origin available at Please download and read the 4-page pamphlet on your child’s country, which is available on that website. Cost is $4 for the pamphlet. Please also provide us with a photocopy or hard copy of the front page of that pamphlet so that we can verify you have completed this part of the training.

Read the country-specific health information on your child’s country of origin available from the CDC at This information can be accessed free of charge. Please click on your child’s country of origin to learn about any health risks in the country where your child resides. Please also send us a hard copy of the information you find so that we can verify that you have accessed that information.

According to the Hague law found in 22 CFR 96.48(e), we may require you to receive additional in-person, individualized counseling and preparation in light of the particular child to be adopted and his or her special needs. This counseling has to be provided in person after you receive your referral, and may have to be provided by your home study agency, which is local to you, rather than your primary adoption agency. If this additional training is necessary in light of the child you are referred and his or her special needs. For out-of-state families, the training can be provided by your home study agency in collaboration with West Sands. Ask your homestudy provider about fees for in-person counseling. Additional online classes or training may also be required at any time during the adoption process.

Please note that we have also provided you with a written list of adoption education resources in accordance with 22 CFR 96.48(f) in our program packets. We hope this document will be a valuable resource to you. You can never learn enough or be too prepared to parent a child.

At your request, West Sands Adoptions will gladly make available the following information: (a) the number of our adoption placements per year for the prior three calendar years, and the number and percentage of those placements that remain intact, are disrupted, or have been dissolved as of the time the information is provided; and (b) the number of parents who apply to adopt on a yearly basis, based on the last three calendar years. West Sands Adoptions places “Waiting Children” through China’s program of adoption for special needs and waiting children. However, we do not have our own list of waiting children at this time. Parents who apply for adoption through programs with West Sands Adoptions will not be referred a child for placement until a child becomes available through the appropriate Central Authority in the child’s country of origin.


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