Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Can you recommend a medical review provider?
A: We have our own experiences with particular providers and can offer our opinion if you would like. Please email us and we will get back to you as soon as possible, or you can check out a list of providers we have gathered here.
Q: Can I use any medical review provider for the referral review?
A: We do not have a must-use list of providers from which you need to select in order to be approved. We recognize that each family will have their own preferences. But, we do require that the provider is located in the United States and attempts to offer a full-service support—pre-referral support; referral reviews; in-country support; and, hopefully, post-placement support. We do reserve the right to deny approval if the provider does not offer appropriate services.
Q: What criteria do you consider in deciding which families receive a grant?
A: The following six criteria are required to determine eligibility for a grant:
• Financial need
• The service provider offers a “full-service” offering (see the above Q and A for more details on the definition of “full service”)
• The service provider must be located in the United States
• Must be in good standing with your adoption agency and up-to-date on all paperwork.
• Adoptions must be legally recognized in the US, either via IR3/IH3 visa or re-adoption.
• The adoption must be an international adoption
Q: How do you determine financial need for a grant?
A: There is not a simple formula or calculation to determine financial need; there are too many factors and variables that impact the decision. The application review committee will carefully weigh all of the data in the application to determine eligibility.
Q: If I am approved for the grant, how are the funds paid?
A: All payments will be made directly to the medical service provider. The Sparrow Fund will work with each medical service provider to arrange the most appropriate payment method.
Q: Can I email you my application instead of mailing it?
A: No. We ask that you mail your application. Your application includes sensitive financial information, and email is not a secure way to send that type of information.
Q: My application has sensitive information about my financial situation and me personally. Can I be assured it is secure?
A: Your information only will be seen by the application review committee and kept in a secure location. Your privacy is of the utmost concern to us. We ensure that your personal information is never shared with anyone outside of The Sparrow Fund.
Q: Do you do additional background and credit checks?
A: No, all of the information we use to make our decision is included in the application process. We rely on the adoption agency to do the proper checks and report the appropriate information in the home study. This prevents duplication of efforts and allows us to keep our overhead cost down.
Q: What is the maximum amount that can be granted?
A: We do not have a specific limit around the amount we will grant, but there is a range that we anticipate that these medical organizations will fall into.
Q: If I receive money from The Sparrow Fund, do I need to repay it?
A: No, there is no obligation to repay the amount we grant to you. But, in the future, if you have discretionary funds to gift, we would appreciate you keeping this organization in mind so we can continue to help other families.
Q: I have a referral right now. I need a doctor to review it by tomorrow, and I can’t afford the cost for a medical review. Can you help me?
A: Unfortunately, at this time, we will not be able to provide emergency funding for situations like this. We require all of the paperwork and application to be submitted to The Sparrow Fund so we can appropriately review the request.
Q: What if I already paid for a medical review of my referred child and I think I would qualify for assistance, would you reimburse me?
A: At this time, we will not issue reimbursements even if you would qualify for the assistance. We want to encourage families to sign up early with these providers so they can reap the benefit of working with them early in the process.
Q: Our adoption will not be finalized in the United States, are we still eligible for assistance from The Sparrow Fund.
A: At this time, we are only providing assistance to families whose adoption is legally recognized in the United States, either via IR3/IH3 visa or readoption.
Q: Is there a limit to how many times we can apply for a grant?
A: There is no limit to how many times you can apply. If you were initially denied and your financial situation has changed, we will be more than happy to receive another completed application for review.
Q: Is there a limit to how many grants we can receive?
A: We limit one grant per adoption. If you are adopting more that one child at a time, the grant will cover the cost that the service provider will charge you to do the review of both referrals.
Q: I saw on the How To Help page a link to an Etsy store called “The Nest”, what is this?
A: The Nest is an Etsy store run by one of our board members who owns the jewelry business, Jiayin Designs. All proceeds from sales at The Nest is shared between the women in Kenya who create the jewelry and gifts sold on the site and The Sparrow Fund.
Q: I saw on the About Us page that you talk about the Bible and Jesus. Does that mean we need to believe the same thing to qualify for assistance from The Sparrow Fund, or does that mean you will preach at us?
A: No. You do not need to believe the same things as the leadership team. Our desire is to help everyone in need to best ready themselves for their adoption. We will not “preach at you” but encourage you to check out Jesus as you want and see the life He can bring. Please feel free to contact us and ask us about our relationship with Jesus and why we are motivated to do this work at The Sparrow Fund.
Q: Are contributions to The Sparrow Fund tax deductible?
A: Yes, The Sparrow Fund is a 501(c)(3) charitable nonprofit organization and all donations are tax deductible as allowed by law.
Q: May I designate my contribution for the benefit of a specific family?
A: According to the IRS guidelines, in order for the donation to be tax deductible, a donor may not retain control over how a nonprofit organization ultimately uses the donated funds; however, the donor may make a request that his or her funds be used in a particular manner. The organization is permitted to consider the request, while the ultimate authority regarding the disposition of the funds is at the discretion of the organization. The Sparrow Fund is grateful for each donation as each gift enlarges the amount of money available to us, thus making it more likely that each approved family will receive the funds they need.