The Malta Independent 26 June 2022, Sunday

Only 27 Maltese children adopted in the last decade

Sabrina Zammit Sunday, 19 June 2022, 10:00 Last update: about 7 days ago

A total of 27 Maltese children have been adopted over the last decade, new data emerging in Parliament earlier this month shows.

Nationalist Party MP Paula Mifsud Bonnici asked the Minister for Active Aging Jo Etienne Abela, whose ministry is also responsible for the Social Welfare Standards Authority, how many children from Malta were adopted by Maltese and Gozitan couples or individuals between 2017 until now.

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The minister said that from 2017 until 2022 only nine Maltese children have been adopted. Data tabled in Parliament in the same sitting shows that in the years of 2017 and 2018 there has not been a single adoption on a Maltese child; in 2019 there were three, followed by two consecutively every year until 2022.

In answering another parliamentary question by Mifsud Bonnici, Abela presented a list in Parliament of all the countries from where child adoptions have taken place.

These are Bulgaria, Chile, Colombia, India, Poland, Romania, Thailand, Albania, Slovakia, Portugal and Vietnam.

In 2018, MaltaToday had published an article reporting that it had been informed by Agenzija Appogg, the agency in charge of adoption services, that between 2012 and 2018 only 18 Maltese children were adopted. The newspaper had also revealed how five of these adoptions involved children under the age of three.

The article did not list the number of adoptions done per year.

This takes the total number of adopted Maltese children in the last 10 years to 27.

The number of foreign children adopted by Maltese couples is much higher than that.

In accordance to statistics acquired by the TV programm Dissett in January of 2019, there had been around 100  foreign adoptions concluded in the five years leading to 2019, with most of them originating from India.

Statistics, which emerged from the Social Care Standards Authority regarding the social sectors, show that back in  2017 and in the first nine months of 2018, a total of 66 children had been adopted from India, Portugal and Slovakia.

This date shows a clear discrepancy between foreign and local adoptions, as the 27 Maltese children who have been adopted between 2012 and 2022, is less than half of the foreign adoptions concluded.

In the same article published by MaltaToday back in 2018, a nun from the Ursuline Homes had told the newspaper that at the time they had around 75 children, including newborn babies, who were entrusted to the sisters’ care.

In a press conference in February of this year, addressed by Family Minister Michael Falzon  together with Foundation for Social Welfare Services CEO Alfred Grixti, it was revealed how in the past 10 years 234 children had been adopted by Maltese families, with the majority of them coming from foreign countries.

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