As you may know, Andrew and I are in the process of adopting our daughter from Africa. With ups and downs over the last 2 years, we've recently applied to adopt from Ethiopia. As a result of this process, we have become aware of the devastating poverty that affects the children of this region. We all know of food shortages and contagious diseases that run rampant, but have we ever stopped to think about what this truly means for those unable to help themselves?
Due to poverty, many birth families give up their children with hopes of providing them a better, healthier life. However, poverty is not the only reason children are abandoned. Education is another common factor. In many countries, birth control is not widely offered nor is it taught. Birth mothers also lack education on how to parent a child. Some lack the capability to earn a living wage to support the child. So, education can play a large part in children becoming available for international adoption. In some situations, when a birth mother becomes pregnant, both her family and her community may shun her. Often this leads to desperate situations that force birth parents to either abandon or relinquish their child. Sadly, there are other factors that create orphans—war, famine, drought, and in some countries, the AIDS epidemic has also created a need for adoptive parents.
Without orphanages and families around the world willing to open their homes to these children, those abandoned would die of malnutrition. Street gangs will kill others and some will turn to violence, leaving this country in a far worse state than imaginable.
How can you help? We are not asking each of you to adopt a child, although that opportunity is available! However, we are asking for your help in creating funds to help us bring our daughter home and support the orphanages of Ethiopia. With the help of families, friends, and other advocates for adoption, we are arranging a “Coast to Coast” raffle. We have fundraising stations in Washington State, DC, California, Chicago, Maine, Florida and Missouri. With over 7 locations advertising this raffle, the plight of this small country to find their children homes will not go unnoticed.
Proceeds will be used toward the lawyer fees associated with the adoption, translating important paperwork, court fees, and the required orphanage donation. Any extra received will go directly to the support of The Thomas Center, our agency’s privately run foster center. This will be the home for children awaiting their forever family.
As part of the Coast to Coast Raffle, we are asking our friends and families for donations: Cash, products for the raffle, unused airline miles, gift certificates, new electronic devices or household appliances. Any cash/check donations will be tax deductible when made out to Children’s House International (our adoption agency) and will go directly to the account designated for the adoption of our daughter. Any other donations will be raffled off at a later date, we are hoping for June 5. Watch your mail for more details on the raffle.
With millions of orphans all over the world, and hundreds of thousands in Africa alone, we felt drawn to the opportunity and security of Ethiopia. We cannot wait to travel to our daughter’s home country and marvel at the sheer beauty of Africa. We also know that we will witness first hand the devastation that surrounds her and other children just like her. With a goal of $30,000, we can provide hope for these children.
Our contact information is listed above, so please contact us with any donation. You may also email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you, in advance, for making a difference.