October is National Down Syndrome Awareness Month!  
Join us in celebrating these amazing kids, and help us to find forever families for more children with Down syndrome by forwarding this email along! We are happy to announce a special grant throughout the month of October for any family who applies and contracts with Madison Adoption Associates with the intent to adopt a child with Down syndrome*. Also, please keep an eye on your inbox over the next several weeks as we introduce you to some of our incredible families who are lucky enough to be sharing their lives with children with Down syndrome. In the meantime, meet Blakely who is waiting for her family !
This little spitfire turned 4 a few weeks ago, and enjoys to grab life by the horns. From her spunk to her smile to her bit of sass, Blakely is going places! But she also knows how to relax, as when she was little she liked to sit and watch TV when she was full from eating…a girl after my own heart. As Blakely matures, she is getting more and more lovely, and now loves riding in cars and imitating adults. To say that Blakely would bring love, life, and energy into a family is an understatement! This girl will change your world for the better! There are numerous grants available to the family who commits to Blakely, from the $1,000 MAA Shining Star grant, to the $500 MAA Special Focus, to the $1,500 special MAA DS October grant*, to the $15,000 Racing for Orphans with Down Syndrome grant through Reece’s Rainbow !!! If you would like more information about Blakely, please email Sarah Hansen .

*The $1,500 MAA DS October grant will be applied to the family’s LOA invoice, following receipt of pre-approval for a child with Down syndrome.
Tuesday, October 2nd all DE & IL staff will be gathering at our DE office for an all-day in-service training. We apologize for the inconvenience as the DE & IL offices will not be answering the phones. Please send us an email and we will do our best to get back to you in a timely manner. Thank you!

Diana Bramble, MAA’s Executive Director of Operations, joins Greg Godwin with The Shepherd’s Crook Orphan Ministry to casually chat about all things Philippines adoption. We urge you to click below to listen to this informative podcast! And if you are interested in learning more about adopting from the Philippines, please email Katie Schultz .
A reminder for families completing adoptions and receiving finalization documents, please keep in mind that the Certificate of Citizenship (COC) will NOT come directly to you if your child is over 14 at the time of entrance to the US. This is especially important for very last minute age-out cases in China, and in countries where children older than 14 can be adopted. If your family adopts a child the day before their 14 th birthday in country, but then travel back to the US once the child is 14, you will need to contact your local USCIS field office to schedule taking the Oath of Allegiance in order to receive the COC. Please allow at least 60 days for your local field office to contact you. If you have not received an appointment notice within 60 days, please visit their  contact center web page   for more information. Please feel free to call us with any questions or concerns!
"We have always been profoundly touched by the love and care our children have received before they came to our family. We discovered with amazement the amount of work the staff puts into preparing the children for their new families. It didn’t make the adjustments non-existent, but it made them much, much easier. There is careful thought and planning put into the meeting with your child in hopes of making the transition as smooth as possible. I loved being able to send a photo book to my children, knowing that when we met them, our faces would already be somewhat familiar to them, due to the wonderful preparation from their caregivers. And for this, we are deeply thankful."

To read more about our Colombia program, and this family’s experience,
Look who came home in September!
We kindly ask everyone to pray for those in the Carolina's and other parts of the south dealing with the devastating effects of Hurricane Florence. To all MAA families in that area, our hearts are with you.