Interview with the Cai (Commission for International Adoptions) Vice president, Daniela Bacchetta, to find out where Italy stands and where it expects to be in 5 years time
The Commission for International Adoptions is an institutional body that works out of the Prime Minister?s offices. Its main aims are to regulate, authorize and monitor international adoptions from Italy. Daniela Bacchetta, the Commission?s recently appointed Vice President, has in her first few months had to face some delicate tasks, such as closing a deal with China and managing the distribution of adoption quotas from Ukraine amongst Italian adoption NGOs. Today she faces a new challenge: ? To give 10 thousand families the child they are looking for?. And to do so transparently and efficiently.
What are Cai?s strategies for the future and what will the Cai be like in five years time?
Efficiency, professionalism and transparency are the Cai?s objectives. We aim to coordinate our activities with those of authorized charities: to carry out adoptions, to explore new areas for intervention, to develop new projects. These are, in my opinion, the characteristics that qualify the Italian model.
Nowadays adoption charities are unevenly distributed abroad: what regions are you targetting?
We have been highlighting the need to look to Africa and Asia for years. Cai is eager to open negotiations with several African nations, and it seems like this will soon be underway. We intend to think about this carefully and reflect upon these matters with the organisations as well as with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs; new projects for the future are to be expected.
There is talk of reducing the number of charities. What criteria will you use? Will this reduction not penalise the smaller NGOs?
The new regulation aims to make the system more effective, and this is its only aim. Inevitably we cannot but look at other countries, like Spain and France, where there are half the number of adoption NGOs. The large number of organisations here in Italy tend to confuse and disorient couples looking to adopt children from abroad. Concentrating activities will help to increase efficiency and reduce costs. However that is not to say that we will not take the individual skills that each organisation has what they mean to families and children for granted.
One of the ideas is to encourage fusions, is that right? On the other hand there are those who say that the system is still not ready for a change ?
The new regulations explicitly mention coordination. Thus it is possible to imagine joint ventures in specific countries. The difficulty will lie in having to coordinate partner?s ideological and methodological differences. But rationalising the system is in everyone?s interests: we are looking forward to a constructive and reflective stage.
The reduction of entities worries families as well. What do you say to this?
Whatever solutions are identified or will be in the future will do their up most not to penalise families. The Commission is committed to making changes for the better and will never compromise those it has set out to serve.
In the Italian system there is a large gap between the number of couples waiting for adoption and the number of finalised adoptions. Will you intervene or will you set a deadline for suitability?
Cai aims, in 2008, to look into the ?waiting list? theme in some depth. A range of seminars and studies have been planned to analyse the Italian and foreign situations. However all changes will have to pass through standard legislative procedures ? if a time limit for suitability will be imposed it will first have to be made into a law, and I do not know of any such initiative for now.