Adoption hopes grow

For Elizabeth and Daniel Larkin, their family will not feel complete without a child.

Like many with fertility issues, they have turned to overseas adoption to fulfil their desire - a process that can be incredibly heart-wrenching with no guarantee of success.

"It's the first thing that I think about when I wake up and the last thing I think about when I go to bed," Mrs Larkin said.

The Bunbury couple are just one of thousands across Australia who have been given new hope after Canberra and the States agreed to streamline the process of adopting a baby from overseas.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott pledged this week to implement a new system by next year for inter-country adoptions after a report found would-be parents faced significant barriers. The report revealed that it cost couples up to $30,000 and took up to 10 years to adopt a child from overseas.

As part of the reforms, Mr Abbott said an agreement had been reached with South Africa to allow adoptions from that country. Australia has agreements with just 13 other countries including China, Chile, Fiji, Lithuania and Sri Lanka. Only 10 children were adopted in WA from overseas last year.

Mrs Larkin, who this week started the Australian Adoption Awareness Support Group on Facebook, welcomed the plan.

She and her husband have recently been approved to adopt a child from Thailand but still face a wait of three to four years, and there is no guarantee a baby will be found for them.

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