Frequently Asked Questions

Who can become an adoptive parent?

Everyone can become an adoptive parent regardless of the age or social status. You just need to fill in the registration form and commit to regular donations over the agreed period. We have single persons, whole families, groups of friends, communities, school classes and more amongst our adoptive parents. If you decide to sponsor a child as a group, please choose your representative who will be in contact with us on behalf of the group.

When should I make my first donation?

The first payment should be made after you submit the registration form. The transfer should cover 3 months donation and serve as a confirmation of the participation in the programme. Please ensure that details of the person making a transfer are the ones indicated on the registration form. Bank details included below:

Recipient: Stowarzyszenie Ruchu MAITRI
Ul. ks. Józefa Zator Przytockiego 3
80-245 Gdańsk

The bank account in EUR:
PL 33 1160 2202 0000 0002 5567 7854

Can I donate for few months in advance?

Yes, you can donate for few months in advance or even a year. It’s entirely up to you. In fact, the missionaries can plan better when greater sums are received in advance.

What information about the child will I receive?

Once you decide to become an adoptive parent, we will provide you with the welcome pack. The pack includes the photo of your child, his/her story and further information on where your sponsored child lives. These are not great details due to significant difficulties in obtaining any information about the children. In many cases, they have no official documentation, and it’s impossible to track their past.

How long will I have to wait for the pack with all the information about the child?

As soon as we receive a registration form and 3 months donation, we will allocate a child to you and send you a welcome pack. The whole process takes no more than 30 days. If you wish to speed up the registration process, please send us the confirmation of the donation transfer.

How do I communicate with my child?

You can exchange the letters and create a long lasting relationship with your child. It is not possible to visit the child in Africa or bring him/her home to you. Please send the letters in English or French to our main office in Gdansk. We will then pass them on to the missionaries in Africa who we are cooperating with, and they will give the letters directly to the children. Please keep in mind that sometimes the contact with the children can be quite irregular as those from rural areas are not used to writing the letters. However, we would like to encourage writing letters to the children. Sometimes it is more important to them than financial support.

Can I choose the age of the child? Is it better to help older or younger children?

If you have preferences regarding the age or gender of the child, you can include this information in the “notes” section of the registration form. We are trying to fulfil these requirements, but unfortunately, this is not always possible. The majority of the people prefer the youngest children, and this sadly causes the youth a bit left out. They need to wait much longer for adoptive parents. We strongly encourage the sponsorship of the children in the secondary schools or above the threshold of 16 years of age. Have a Heart Adoption programme is usually the only chance for them to continue education and find the job to support their siblings. Sometimes instead of sponsoring the little one, it’s better to help his/her older brother or sister.

Is Have a Heart Adoption programme run exclusively by the Maitri in Poland?

The Maitri Movement launched Have a Heart Adoption programme in 1995/1996, and at this time we were the only institution in Poland running this type of the sponsorship. Nowadays there are many more organisations in Poland who are helping to improve the lives of African children.

How many children are currently sponsored by the Maitri?

At the end of 2016, The Maitri Movement supported 3535 children in 13 countries.

How does the sponsorship work?

All the children participating in the Have a Heart Adoption Programme have their files, where we record all the activities related to them like education certificates, letters with their adoptive parents and forms of help they receive. You donate to your child, we pass the donations to the missionary centres cooperating with us, and finally, the centres distribute the aid amongst the children. It is very rare that the child receives the money. The missionaries know the situation of each child, and they directly pay the school fees or health services, purchase the food, clothes, school accessories and more. All the expenses are noted and accounts reconciled with the Maitri on a yearly basis. We also send our coordinator to the Africa to visit each centre that cooperates with us and verify all the documentation.

Can I increase my regular donation amount?

Yes, there is such a possibility. Sometimes we have children impacted by sudden diseases in the families, damage to the house, purchase of the field etc. Adoptive parents learn about the situation from the children letters. It is entirely up to you to decide if you want to donate more but it’s not obligatory. If you wish to increase the donation amount, please contact our main office in Gdansk so we can verify if it’s actually needed.

How much of my sponsorship money reaches the child?

No more than 10% of the donations are spent on the administration and fundraising of the Have a Heart Adoption Programme. 1€ from every donation is contributed towards the administration costs what means that children receive approximately 93% of all the donations received by The Maitri Movement.

How do I complete the registration form?

Please see below for the correct completion of the registration form:
• Single adoption – please include the first and last name and leave the business name empty,
• Group Adoption – fill both: the business name and the first and last name of your representative who will be in contact with us on behalf of your group,
• The given first and last name will appear on the confirmations of your donations,
• Please include the correspondence address if different to the permanent one,
• Please inform us within the “notes” section, if the details of the person who will be transferring the donations are different to the ones in the registration form,
• Please always inform us about any changes in your details so we can update our records accordingly,
• If you choose Nourishing Programme, there is no need to answer the question regarding the communication with a child in French. The possibility of exchanging the letters only exists within the Have a Heart Adoption programme,
• If you have preferences regarding the age or gender of the child, you can include this information in the “notes” section,
• Please let us know as well how you learn about us – this will help us to reach a bigger audience.

How are my donations identified by the Maitri?

Please follow below rules when making the payments:
• The first and last name of the person transferring the money should match the details included in the registration form,
• When making a payment, please always include unique Maitri code given to each adoptive parent after the registration e.g. A3201,
• If you are donating to the certain project, make sure to include its name,
• If you are donating to more than one project, please include both names and the amount per project e.g. Have a Heart Adoption 15€ + Nourish Children 20€,
• If you’re paying for another person in addition to yourself, please include the first and last name and the unique Maitri code of that person.

How do I write to my sponsored child?

Exchanging the letters with your sponsored child is an important part of the Have a Heart Adoption programme. In this way, you can create a long lasting relationship with your child, make him/her feel special and bring joy and happiness to their lives.

Tips on how to write a letter to your sponsored child
If this is the first time for you writing a letter to your child, it’s best, in the beginning, to write a little about yourself, your family, your interests or hobbies and your work. The letters should be short and simple. Make sure that you ask questions about your kid’s life: about the school, the family and friends, etc. Please keep in mind that sometimes you might not receive all the answers. The majority of our kids are coming from rural areas where the letter correspondence doesn’t exist, and many of them are writing the letters for the first time in their lives.

What can I include with a letter?
We encourage including photos. The kids are curious about you and your life, and the photos will give them a better insight into it. You can attach postcards, stickers or colouring pages but make sure these are not larger than A5. If you attach the books, please ensure they are written in the language your child speaks: English or French. Please do not send any toys, games, metal objects, clothes or school accessories.

What not to write?

• Don’t suggest to your child that he/she can visit you or you can come to Africa. Don’t promise them presents, additional money or that you will sponsor their education long term including the University. The Missionaries advised us that sometimes favouring some children over others create unnecessary jealousy and conflicts.
• Don’t share your home address, phone number or email address – this can cause unexpected requests for help from the child’s family or neighbours.

In what language should I write?
You can write a letter to your sponsored child in English or French.

What should be a letter’s weight?
A letter shouldn’t be larger than A5 and weigh no more than 250g.

How should I address a letter?
You need to include the following information on each letter or item (book, colouring pages, photos, etc.) you wish to send to your sponsored child:
• the first and last name of the child
• the identification number of your child
• the name of the missionary centre that is helping your child
• your unique Maitri code.

Shumbusho Valens
The Pallotine Sisters – Masaka

Where should I send a letter?
Please send all the letters to our main office in Gdansk. Our volunteers will translate the letter if needed. Please do not send the letters directly to Africa.