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Monday, 06 July 2020 07:02

California couple takes winding path to parenthood through surrogacy, Ukraine and COVID-19

A Californian couple that has been trying to have a baby for an agonizing 17 years is going to have to wait a little while longer due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. But thanks to a surrogate in Ukraine, they have what they've waited so long for.

Yuvaraj and Sarvicka Nagendram, 56 and 49, respectively, called their new baby "the gift of a lifetime," but the journey to adoption was a long one that's still not over.

The couple, from San Leandro, just south of Oakland, learned in early May they finally had a son from a surrogate mother in Ukraine. But travel restrictions have prevented them from uniting with the long-awaited baby.

Yuvaraj and Sarvicka got married in 2007 in Canada. Yuvaraj is a U.S. national and a software developer. Four years ago Sarvicka, who was diagnosed with uterus fibroids, learned she couldn't give birth to a child for themselves.

"We went through a lot of treatment, but weren't successful," Yuvaraj recalled. "I saw an article on the BBC News about surrogacy. There was a lot of clinics that provide surrogacy. I looked through a lot of agencies."

In June 2018, the couple found an agent in Ukraine, who took them to the surrogacy motherhood center BioTexCom in Kyiv.

"He responded quickly, he was very responsive on my questions and everything. So I decided to go to Ukraine," Yuvaraj said. "When we met I liked him, he's a very good person. And at the clinic they were very nice to us."

But the much-wanted baby still didn't come easy. Yuvaraj and Sarvicka gave their biological material, but it took three cycles to make the impregnation successful.

"Then we had to wait until the birth. Time was moving so slow. We felt terrible," the couple said.

Finally, on May 5, the agent called to say that the baby boy had arrived.

"We were so happy. When we saw the pictures, my wife cried and I sat very quietly," Yuvaraj said. "At the same time, we were confused. We wanted to celebrate, but due to lockdown we were worried when we will be able to see him."

They still don't know the exact time of birth.

"Since then, we couldn't sleep, we couldn't eat," Yuvaraj confessed.

Then, he and Sarvicka had to figure out how to take their beloved baby from a country that is under lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic. Ukraine, which has had more than 17,000 cases of COVID-19, has banned all international flights.

They weren't the only couple that faced such an obstacle.

As of April 30, 46 babies born with the help of BioTexCom specialists were waiting for their foreign parents at a Kyiv hotel, called Venice. In a video published by the company on its YouTube channel, all the newborns are seen in one room. A woman, who presented herself as a hotel administrator, said they are being taken care of 24 hours a day.

"All children are gaining weight steadily," said pediatrician Tatiana Lisovskaya. "We've chosen formula and its dosage individually for every baby."

"We show babies to their parents online and our managers arrange video calls," the nurse says in the video. "It's heartbreaking to see how parents miss their little ones."

But Yuvaraj and Sarvicka haven't had a single video call with their child since he was born.

Yuvaraj tried to book a ticket on different flights to Ukraine, but the airlines demanded permissions from the Ukrainian government. He addressed the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine, but officials required an itinerary and a flight booked to facilitate the journey. Eventually, Yuvaraj booked a flight to Minsk, Belarus, for May 16, while still waiting for permission from Ukrainian authorities to enter.

Meanwhile, the video with the crying newborns sparked outrage in Ukraine.

Ukraine's Commissioner for Human Rights, Lyudmyla Denisova, responded to the outrage, saying, "A law should be changed for the reproductive technologies to be provided to Ukrainian citizens only. In Ukraine, children shouldn't be a trade matter."

Current Ukrainian laws do not regulate surrogate motherhood entirely. The relative freedom has led Ukraine to be Europe's surrogacy capital.

"There's an article that said, 'If a baby is born by a surrogate mother, its biological parents are the ones considered to be parents,'" Sergii Antonov, a Ukrainian lawyer who specializes in legal advice on reproductive technologies, told ABC News. "We don't have discrimination by nationality -- foreign and Ukrainian citizens have the same rights."

There are around 50 clinics of reproductive medicine in the country, and around 40 of them arrange surrogacy -- providing medical consultations, legal advice, logistics and post-birth support. BioTexCom bills itself as one of the largest in the country and among the leaders in reproductive medicine in Europe.

Women between 18 and 38 years old can become partners -- donating eggs or as a surrogate mother. The center pays surrogates $15,000 for the first kid and $22,000 for two kids in addition to about $2,000 for food during the pregnancy.

BioTexCom charges more than $40,000 -- it has packages for 49,900 euros or 64,900 euros -- for a couple to have a baby from a surrogate mother in Ukraine, not counting travel and accommodation expenses. For Yuvaraj and Sarvicka, who went through three cycles, it cost much more.

"I spent around $150,000 to $200,000," Yuvaraj said. "Now I look back and think that maybe I could spend a bit more, but at least do it here in the U.S."

"To have a surrogate baby in Ukraine is much cheaper than in India, Thailand or the U.S., so many foreigners prefer to come here," Antonov said. "When surrogacy started to develop in Ukraine, foreigner were 15% of clients, now they are more than 85%. It drives the authority mad."

Antonov argued that the number of overseas clients doesn't mean foreigners should be banned from having surrogate babies in Ukraine.

"We have suggested a lot of law amendments to protect both children and surrogate mothers, but the authorities don't understand and linger," he said.

After the video went viral, Denisova said something should be done urgently to reunite the babies with their parents. On Friday, Yuvaraj and Sarvicka received a letter from the Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs saying that he would be allowed to enter Ukraine to take their son.

"We are thinking of naming him Alan," Yuvaraj said. "I'm on my way to him and I feel like I conquered the world. We think people in the world are now giving more attention to death, not a lot to birth. We just thought it's our destiny."


Learn more About International Surrogacy In Ukraine:

Delivering Dreams helps couples throughout the world struggling with infertility have children. Located in NJ and Kyiv and Lviv, Ukraine, our amazing medical facilities and professionals, surrogates and donors are in Ukraine, because Ukrainian law protects the rights of parents and their children from inception at affordable costs anad high success rates.

Unique to Delivering Dreams, we offer guaranteed not to exceed, all-inclusive pricing and contracts under US law to provide prospective parents legal and financial security.

You are not alone. We want to be your path to parenthood. Contact us to find out more about how much does surrogacy cost.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and, 1.908.386.3864

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We have been very satisfied, I have been comfortable at the clinic and with my doctor. I was heard. I could ask any questions. I like you have hu-mor, despite the circumstances. Great clinic. Your service has been very good. You have been a huge support and very spacious. You have been available 24 hours a day. You have the answer to all the questions we have been asked. You have accommodated our nervousness, you have rejoiced with us, you have been there throughout. I could not have wished ...
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A and S
The communication with surrogate is easy and better than what we expected. The updates are provided as scheduled with occasional surprises
The support was great. It was easy on us that the coordination was done by the delivering dreams team while being completely transparent with us on the progress. The communication with the delivering dreams team was always fast, responsive, and easy.
E and K
Thank you kate. You have been great today and all the other days ❤ you are a great team. We are very satisfied and happy for your help.
We were confident before in our choice, but this experience has confirmed beyond any doubt that we choose the best agency.
I loved working with Susan and her team and highly recommend them to anyone considering her services. She's is great at every aspect of a process and knows how to handle delicate matters.
Diana Lyakhovetska
Susan truly understands the needs of parents using surrogacy, and offers comprehensive emotional support to parents as they experience the journey!
Christine Hughes Pontier
The team at Delivering Dreams is amazing! Their attention to detail and ability to put your mind at ease while growing your family is like none other. They handled everything for us, and I never once doubted they would help us accomplish our dreams.
Margaret Jones
I’ve known Susan for several years now, and I’ve always been impressed by her attention to her clients’ needs. I’ve known her to work ardently and diligently to solve whatever challenges, no matter how unique, that prevent her clients from completing their families. She is a problem-solver, and she earnestly believes in providing the best options and in making surrogacy opportunities realities: this is not merely a business for Susan. She will help customize the process for your needs and to ...
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Mary Woods
Susan has a keen sense of business and goes to the max to solve her clients’ problems. She is super knowledgeable on business, laws and how things work in surrogacy in general, and specifically on Ukrainian surrogacy. She is an advocate for transparency in a market that’s often opaque and full of hidden risks. I really enjoyed working with Susan. She really pays attention to detail and was always looking out for my best interest above all. Highly recommend!
Laurie Tham
Delivering Dreams goes above and beyond what other surrogacy agencies offer. After speaking with Susan, I see how they anticipate every part of the process, down to details that I had never even considered. I didn’t know what I didn’t know! Surrogacy can be really complicated and confusing. What an amazing sense of relief to have a company so dedicated to managing the WHOLE process and taking away as much of the stress as possible.
Kate Varness
I have gotten to know Susan through a group where we are members. I have found her to be a genuine and caring person. Her consideration for others and love of her work with Ukrainian surrogates and parents-to-be are evident in all her decision making. She is passionate about being a force for the greater good and helping where she can. I have been amazed at the way she is able to smoothly navigate the complicated maze of requirements in the surrogacy process. I am happy to give her my highest...
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Rose Anne Barbour Huck
Susan Kibler is kind.  She clearly loves those she works with and loves what she does.  Susan listens deeply and compassionately and can make you laugh all in the space of one conversation.  She is wonderful!  If you are feeling worried, she'll hear you.  If you have questions, she will find answers for you. If you need help, she does her very best to support you.  I feel so fortunate to have found her and imagine you will too.
Frances Russell
Susan has the ability to really connect on a personal level quickly.  I have found her easy to talk to and have been so grateful for her guidance.  She is one of those people who offers so much to her clients.  She sees the big picture and has a heart for the most intimate concerns.  She is highly skilled and able to manage what can certainly be challenging and uncomfortable experiences, making them feel easier.  She will take charge at the perfect times and guide you when you really need her...
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Susan Seare
The international surrogacy world is complicated. Susan Kibler knows its ins-and-outs. She knows the people and outfits you can trust and the ones to avoid. She insists on the best for her clients and handles the details so they don't have to worry about them. If you want to take the international surrogacy journey, you can trust Delivering Dreams International Surrogacy Agency to guide you on that path.
Nancy Linnerooth
My friend and I had a positive experience working with Susan. Susan is always super responsive and caring. She is very professional, helpful and reliable. My friend has soo much troubles trying having a baby for many years. My friend and her husband were about to give up their dream of having a baby. Susan Kersch Kibler found the way to help. She has unlimited energy, attentive to detail and super efficient. Great to work with!
Polina Clend
Susan is passionate about helping people become families. She is a trustworthy confidant to have on your side.
Kristen Ancker
Our experience with Delivering Dreams has been overwhelmingly positive. The team seems to be genuinely dedicated to helping us to realize our dream of having a child. The constant communication leading up to the trip and the numerous touch points made us feel comforted in what has been a very challenging and uncomfortable situation. We always had streamlined communication through the group chat and was frequently checked on during our stay.

Under Ukrainian law, surrogacy is a legal affordable option for traditionally married couples to have children using their own embryos, or with either an egg or sperm donor. There must be a medical reason you can’t carry a child. You are also able to participate if you have had 4 unsuccessful IVF attempts.


Under Ukrainian law, surrogacy is a legal affordable option for traditionally married couples to have children using their own embryos, or with either an egg or sperm donor. There must be a medical reason you can’t carry a child. You are also able to participate if you have had 4 unsuccessful IVF attempts.