Paper Orphans

Paper Orphans

2013, Society  -   4 Comments
Ratings: 8.06/10 from 33 users.

Each year, around 60 children are adopted out of Nepal and into the United States and Europe. Under international pressure in 2010, adoption laws were tightened. But there are indications that children continue to be illegally trafficked into the West.

"Action for Child Rights" is a Belgian organization led by Jurgen Conings which seeks to address abuses that occur often in orphanages across Nepal. Their main focus is stopping the creation of paper orphans; children designated as orphans and placed on the adoption market, whilst in reality they still have their biological parents.

The system in Nepal allows you to quickly put a child up for adoption. The papers needed to create an orphan are very simple. You take a photograph of the child, you then place it in a newspaper in Nepal. If no one responds, you can officially apply for the papers. It's called a system, but in practice it's widely abused.

Arjun is a paper orphan. Six years ago he was adopted from the Krishna Balmandir orphanage in Nepal by an American couple. His biological mother Khanchi contacted Jurgen – she had no idea what had happened to her son. So Jurgen began searching for Arjun's adoptive parents.

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9 years ago

I mean..seriously...these women leave thier kids in an orphanage and get locked up in jail..what did they expect!!!!! Honestly, I think these children have a chance for a better life if adopted by loving parents. Just because they're from a poor country doesn't justify their actions. A convicted felon who gives away her child would be called trash in the US..she wouldn't get any sympathy, it makes no difference that she's from Tibet.

10 years ago

Yes, it's too bad more resources weren't devoted to this expose. I think it's well documented, but the result is half-finished. Some scenes were very moving indeed though and I thought the witnesses quite brave.
I would have liked to see contributions by other organizations as well. So little money is spent on saving children, while a million times as much is spent on exploiting them.

10 years ago

Really interested in this subject matter, but it was very difficult to understand what the Nepalese were saying in their heavy accents, and the host spoke Norwegian.
An English narrator spoke over HIS voice.
The film seemed to end suddenly, leaving me to wonder how the story of Khanchi and Arjun ends.