Zimdina Ethiopia

Birth family and country connections strengthen your child’s identity. Wide Horizons For Children offers a unique and comprehensive set of services for Ethiopian adoptive families. Through Zimdina, the Amharic word for “extended family,” there are multiple ways to maintain and strengthen your child’s early connections in Ethiopia and build a foundation that lasts a lifetime.

We provide these options to connect:

  • Social Worker Interview with Birth Family: You work one-on-one with a trained social worker to design a personalized interview for the birth family. Then, our social worker will visit the birth family in their home to share your updates and questions. You receive a written narrative of the visit, photos and videos of the family, and counseling on how to share this information with your child.
  • Travel Back: Traveling back is an incredible opportunity to understand and appreciate the past and make connections for the future. Our trained social workers will work with you before, during and after your two day-long visits with your child’s birth family or to places of importance.

Tammy always wanted to take her daughters back to Ethiopia to reconnect with their birth family. It was just a matter of when. That opportunity came in the spring of 2016 when Aster, 11, and her sister Charlotte, 12, were old enough to understand and appreciate the experience.

“The girls were more excited than anxious,” Tammy says, crediting the time spent preparing them for the trip by Wide Horizons For Children staff. Zimdina, meaning “extended family” in Amharic, has helped hundreds of adoptive families travel back to Ethiopia to connect with birth families.

The sisters met with their birth mother, who explained that when their father died, she was no longer able to care for them—helping the girls better understand why they were placed for adoption.

“The trip was amazing. I would do it all again,” says Aster.

“Visiting our family was a wonderful experience,” adds Charlotte, “overwhelming but full of love!”

The trip to Ethiopia reaffirmed the link between their past and present and gave the sisters a new sense of belonging.

The experience was joyful and celebratory.
Parent to Aster and Charlotte