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  • Wednesday, August 08, 2018 4:39 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Pro Forma Letter.docx

    Law Reform Consultation Paper - Review of Sexual Offences.pdf

    It has been brought to our attention that adopted children are not appropriately protected in the current laws in Hong Kong related to incest. In the Crimes Ordinance, the existing incest offence does not cover parents who have a sexual relationship with their adopted children. Although prosecutions can be brought against sex offenders under the other laws that protect minors, we feel adopted children in our society must be treated equally by the law in every respect.

    Now is the time for action! The Review of Sexual Offences Sub-Committee released a Consultation Paper with potential revisions to the law, including a suggestion that adopted children should be protected just as biological children; they invite the community to express their views by 15th August 2018. AFHK will be writing our letter to the Government, but we also urge you to take this opportunity to lobby Government and send a clear message that adopted children are entitled to the same protection against harmful crimes as biological children.  We attach the following:

    1) A Pro Forma (pre-written template) letter for you to either (a) add your personal details and sign or, even better to (b) amend/add to use your own words to express your views and submit to Government. The number of replies received in consultation periods matter; the Law Reform Commission reports how many are sent by the community and distinguishes between the pro forma replies and personally drafted submissions in its reporting. 

    Pro Forma Letter Final (1).docx

    2) The Consultation Paper: In Chapter One, the paper discusses incest at length making reference to adoptive parents, marriage of adult adoptive children to parents and siblings, extension of incest law to uncles/aunts/nieces/nephews.

    Law Reform Consultation Paper - Review of Sexual Offences.pdf

    Letters should be sent to:

    The Secretary

    The Review of Sexual Offences Sub-Committee

    The Law Reform Commission

    4th Floor, East Wing, Justice Place

    18 Lower Albert Road

    Central, Hong Kong


    Please take action urgently either by email or mail before the closing date 15th of August

  • Friday, December 18, 2015 11:50 AM | Deleted user

    What has changed?

    Under the previous UK adoption law, if you were on the "Designated List", your overseas adoption would be recognised and nationality granted automatically. Hong Kong appeared on the Designated List.

    This adoption law was amended in early 2014 and replaced the "Designated List" with a "Schedule". Panic and confusion ensued because Hong Kong no longer appeared in this new Schedule. Things looked even more bleak when the British Consulate, at the same time, stripped back their consular assistance to British families in Hong Kong.

    What made the situation strange was that China appeared both on the Designated List and on the new Schedule. Why remove Hong Kong and not China? Was this a simple act of cleaning up countries on the list since the 1997 handover, or something more sinister by the UK legislature?

    What AFHK have done

    Steering Committee member, Arya Hashemi and his family, acted as a test case for applications for Biritish citizenship of their adopted child in Hong Kong.

    In July 2015, their daughter was granted British nationality and we believe they were the first successful nationality application under the new UK adoption law. However, despite repeated requests, the basis for which the application was approved was not given by the Home Office.

    We continued dialogue with the UK Home Office, and we are very pleased to note that on 17 December 2015, the Home Office (after many enquiries) finally gave us the answer we were looking (hoping, and praying) for.

    The Home Office stated that their "understanding is that Hong Kong is covered by the inclusion of China on the [Schedule]". This means that Hong Kong adoptions are currently automatically recognised by the UK.

    This will come as a massive relief to British families - both those who have adopted and those who are planning to adopt.

    Are British adoptive families out of the woods?

    The short answer is "no". The fact is that Hong Kong has been omitted from the Schedule. The Home Office have not committed the inclusion of Hong Kong into a formal policy or law, and they could always revise their "understanding" at any time. However, given that the Home Office has accepted applications on this basis already, it would be a difficult proposition for them to amend this policy without formal consultation. Whilst we consider the risk to be low, families should realise that a risk does still remain.

    Applying for British nationality for your child

    One other point of contention is the lack of consular assistance in Hong Kong. The Home Office also confirmed that, pursuant to their new guidance issued 9 December 2015 (which can be found here:, applications for nationality for adopted children in Hong Kong are to be made directly to them in the UK.

    The Home Office requires many originals in its consideration of nationality applications including the passports of the adoptive parents. Since the Home Office is likely to retain these originals for in excess of 6 months, this may not be feasible for Hong Kong expats because work visas need to be renewed and people may need to travel for work.

    As a result, with some persuasion, the Nationality Checking Services ( may allow you to apply in person and take copies of all your documents.

    The Hashemi family used the Newcastle upon Tyne branch for their application. It did mean a trip to the UK, but also it meant they could retain all their vital original documentation.

    Disclaimer: This post is provided for information purposes only and readers should not make any reliance on the information therein. Adoptive families should consider the impact of their home countries' laws very carefully and seek legal assistance where appropriate.
  • Wednesday, December 16, 2015 1:36 PM | Anonymous
    Thanks Celine Joly ! Was great to see you, Lea and Teo. We're happy that you enjoyed your time and thanks for sharing this cute video. Happy Holidays!

  • Friday, December 11, 2015 6:54 PM | Anonymous

    Dear AFHK Members, Friends and Supporters,

    Every year at our Annual Family Holiday Party, we hold a raffle and a Silent Auction to raise funds to help us sustain and grow our continuing pre and post adoption education support and outreach work. 

    This year, a kind donor has given us the following renowned genuine La Mer products, considered to be some of the world's best and most exclusive beauty treatments and we decided to open our Silent Auction to bidders who are unable to attend in person.

    La Mer Eye Balm Intense Retail price 1750$  Bid start 800$ Minimum increase 100$ 
    La Mer Whitening Essence Intense Retail price 2850$ Bid start 1200$ Minimum increase 200$
    La Mer The Concentrate Retail price 3790$ Bid start 1600$ Minimum increase 200$
    *all prices are in Hong Kong Dollars

    To place a bid, mail us at by 5:30 pm on Saturday December 12 with:

    1/ the item you would like to bid for
    2/ your maximum and final bid (Please make sure you follow minimum starting price and minimum increment for your bid to be valid. All bids are firm and binding the bidder.)

    Winners will be announced at the Holiday Party on December 13 and those not in attendance will be notified by email by December 20.

    Last year, with your generous support we raised nearly HKD16,000 which was a remarkable result but we are hoping to do even better this year. We look forward to receiving your bids!

    Thank you for playing a part at AFHK.

    Louise Garnaut

    AFHK Adoptive Families of Hong Kong
    Growing families together for more than 20 years
    HK Registered Charity no. 91/11265
    GPO Box 8896 Central, Hong Kong |

  • Sunday, August 02, 2015 2:21 PM | Anonymous

    Inside Out proved to be a great movie for all ages and especially for the children!  In our first "AFHK Meets at the Movies", the children learnt that it's ok to feel all types of emotions and that even sometimes you can feel multiple emotions at once.  Some memories can be happy and sad, as we learnt from the characters Joy and Sadness.  We would thoroughly recommend this movie for all adoptive families!  

    Here's some great reviews on the movie:

  • Thursday, July 23, 2015 10:31 AM | Anonymous

    This list from is a such a great start on talking to children about adoption that we wanted to share it here on our blog: 

    Many parents dread having the “adoption talk”. They worry that they will make a mistake; that their child will feel different; that they will somehow burden him with information he does not need to know.

    Worry not! “The Talk” is really a series of small seemingly inconsequential talks as your child ages, starting before they even understand the words and continuing until they are adults sharing these 10 basic facts.

    1. Adoption is normal. Families are formed in different ways and all ways are great.
    2. All children are born to a mommy and daddy. Adopted kids need to know that they grew in their birth mom’s tummy (uterus) just like other kids grew in their mom’s tummy.
    3. Nothing they did caused their birth parents to place them for adoption. Adoptive parents have to explain what they know about why the child was adopted. They may know the exact reason or they may have a general idea that they can share. (In an open adoption, birth parents can also share.) Example:
      • Suzy and John (birth parents) were not ready to parent any baby when you were born.
      • We think your birth parents were very very poor and knew that they couldn’t give you what you needed.
    4. Their adoptive parents wanted them very much and were very happy when they came.
    5. Adoption is forever.
    6. Their adoptive parents will have enough respect and compassion to not talk disrespectfully about their birth family.
    7. Their adoptive parents are always open to their questions and to help them get more information.
    8. It’s OK to have mixed emotions about being adopted.
    9. It’s OK to love both their adopted family and birth family.
    10. Their adoptive parents will tell them their full adoption story and not keep secrets from them about their adoption. Family secrets are destructive. Lay the groundwork for the full story during the younger year and aim to have shared the full story no later than around age 12.

  • Tuesday, June 16, 2015 7:56 AM | Anonymous

    Congratulations to Jan Henderson for receiving the AFHK Distinguished Service Award for her commitment and dedication to AFHK and to helping adoptive families in Hong Kong since 2002.

    Jan will continue to work with AFHK as our joint Single Adoptive Parents Event Coordinator.

    On Saturday 13th June 2015, our Chair, Louise Garnaut, hosted a lovely evening to congratulate Jan on her amazing service to AFHK and to bring the Steering Committee together to reflect and discuss AFHK’s work.

  • Monday, June 01, 2015 8:43 AM | Anonymous

    Have you shared these six crucial things about adoption with your child?  Thanks to "Creating a Family" website for this list of the top 6 important issues that you should share with your adopted child by the age of 6.  This will give your child the vocabulary they need and will help them process their own past.

  • Wednesday, April 22, 2015 8:04 AM | Anonymous
    Children can often express their thoughts better through play and reading books.  If you missed the presentation that Cheryl Shanahan did for AFHK in January on promoting resilience in children through storybooks, read about it and filial play therapy in this SCMP article.

  • Friday, February 27, 2015 12:19 PM | Anonymous
    We are delighted to have Mary Wu from Mother's Choice Pregnant Girls Service join us for our Monthly Discussion on March 13.

    Don't miss the discussion ! Register online now.

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