Well, the new investigations that the US Embassy is putting in place have been slow as molasses to begin. They were announced on February 4, and all the Congo Mamas (there is a large group of us on Facebook) have been going NUTS trying to figure out what the holdup is. But there's good news, finally! The investigations seem to have begun! A parent visiting her children encountered two field investigators (in our commune, no less!), and they confirmed that they would be investigating two other children in the same commune that day. (A commune seems to be similar to a county within a province.) Could those two children be my kids? Who knows, but it is good to know they are finally getting the show on the road.
Many people wonder what they are investigating. Their goal is to determine whether or not the children are true orphans. While this new investigation has lengthened my process by at least 3-6 months, my family and I are grateful that the embassy is digging into cases. The last thing we want is to find out that our children were taken from someone, were victims of human trafficking. The investigations have been instituted in order to fight that kind of corruption, and we are all in favor. There are millions of orphans in the DRC, and we'd love to see adoptions continue...in a very ethical manner.
Anyway, that's where we are right now. We have no idea when we'll be traveling but as soon as we know, we'll be shouting it from the rooftops. The only thing we are waiting on is this investigation and the issuance of US visas for the kids.