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The Matching Room

Matching a child to a family is a very mysterious process. The following information has been pieced together from various conversations with our agency, other families who have been through this process and famous adoption blogs.

This information may be completely inaccurate by tomorrow. Whatever remains to be accurate is subject to change on a whim.

Getting Started
First, the matching takes place for families living outside of China. The Matching Room workers (matchers) review the baby dossier and make sure all of the documents are up to date. It is said that they then count all of the dossiers that are eligible for matching on that day and then compare that to see how many matches can be made. They don’t want to send out matches for a partial day (meaning some families who were logged in on April 14th received a match, but others won’t).

Pairing Agencies with Orphanages
The next step is to match the orphanages with the agencies. If an orphanage has 6 babies and an agency has 6 families then they’re a match. If two orphanages are in the same province and have 10 babies and an agency has 10 families then they’re a match.

Enter the Expats
If an orphanage has 7 babies available for adoption, but the agency has 6 families, then the next expat dossier in line is selected.

Matching Begins
According to people who have way more connections than I do, the matcher looks for something that stands out:

the same birthday
similar facial features
a baby who likes music and a parent who plays the piano, etc.

Though there are other photos in the dossier, only the passport photos go into the matching room. Several matchers say they try to match bone structure.

After they have made the obvious matches, then they start to look at age of child requested.

At this point the matcher contacts the agency they match for. The worker will relay to the agency how many referrals (matches) they will be receiving and from what province.

An expat gets a call directly from CCAA stating that their referral has been made and the Letter of Seeking Confirmation has been placed in the mail.

Mysterious Matchers
Just like the review room (where the dossier is initially reviewed and given a log-in-date), each matcher is assigned to certain agencies. Each matcher works differently and can decide what type of and how much information they want to give their assigned agencies.

Our Matching Room Experience
We knew there was a man matching our case. On October 9th, we heard that we were in the matching room. This was really BIG news and we did quite a dance around the living room. On October 23rd this was again confirmed. Yes, we were still on his desk. Then, on November 10th, our agency called to see if there was an update and the matcher said we were not on his desk. We were so disappointed.  Sometimes it’s hard to get a clear picture as to what is going on.

So we were completely surprised to get our call on Christmas Eve that we had been matched since we had no real confirmation that we were on the matcher’s desk.

Screen shot 2010-01-13 at 2.29.39 PM
I have to laugh out loud when I think about our old passport photos. In 2007, when our agency requested two passport photos for the dossier, we turned in some extra photos we had from 2004! Since the dossier also required other photos, we didn’t think anything about it. Little did we know that these were the only pictures the matcher would ever see.

How did this sweet precious one come to us?
The Real Matchmaker, of course.

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