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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Gift of Adoption Giving Circle

When you are considering adoption, one of the first things you think is "I can never afford it" thankfully there are grant foundations out there to help families realize their dreams, Gift of Adoption Fund is one of them.

From the Gift of Adoption Fundraising Page:

Amanda is a beautiful three-year-old girl who has lived her entire life in an Estonian orphanage. Amanda has Downs Syndrome. Unfortunately, many children in international orphanages who have Downs Syndrome are transferred to mental institutions at the age of four. The odds of them being adopted after that are extremely low. Knowing this, Thomas and Kris decided to act.

Toms and Kris have four grown sons and two daughters, their youngest is Meghan and she has Down syndrome. In 2007 they adopted for the first time when they welcomed Kara into their family from the Ukraine . Kara also has Down Syndrome. Knowing there are so many more children like Kara who are in need of the love and security of a family, Tom and Kris soon began a second adoption journey. Financing a second adoption so closely on the heels of the first proved to be difficult. After hosting several fundraisers, soliciting family and friends, and starting a small home business, they were still short. Because time was of the essence, they turned to Gift of Adoption for assistance. A grant from Gift of Adoption will provide the last bit of funding needed to give Amanda a forever family and allow her to be all she is meant to be.

With your help, we can fund the grant that gives Amanda a family. Any amount raised over $3,500 will be used to unite even more children with forever families. We are also excited to share that if we reach the goal of $3,500, all contributions made to this page will be matched 100% by the Ralph and Eileen Swett Foundation, doubling the impact of your contribution.

The Gift of Adoption Fund is a national 501(c) 3 organization that inspires adoptions by giving grants that put adoption in reach: in reach for the 140 million children worldwide in need of families, for qualified parents yearning to adopt, and for those of us who want to do something concrete to move a child from a dire situation into a life of hope and promise.

Gift of Adoption was co-founded in 1996 by adoptive parents Gene and Lucy Wyka. Realizing how grateful they were to be able to afford the time and cost involved in adopting and understanding the importance of giving their children a family, they began to wonder what they could do to help bring more children home to a loving family. They began a foundation in 1996 with a single focus – to put adoption in reach for more children and families.

Any U.S. citizen adopting from anywhere in the world (domestic or international) who has an approved home study from a licensed agency or social worker is eligible to apply. Financial need must be demonstrated. The number of biological children or adopted children in the home does not impact eligibility. Gift of Adoption does not consider an applicant’s marital status, gender, race, creed, national origin, or religion when reviewing applications.

For more information on Gift of Adoption, please visit http://www.blogger.com/www.giftofadoption.org.

For more information about Gift of Adoption Giving Circles and how you can create a page like this to help unite a specific child with a family, please visit www.firstgiving.org/giftofadoption.

Our story:

When we decided to adopt the one thing that could have prevented our adoption was financing. Towards the end of our paper gathering for Kara’s adoption, we realized we needed additional finding for in country expenses, we applied for a grant from Gift of Adoption fund, and the day before we were leaving for Ukraine, we learned we were approved for this grant. It paid for the last two weeks in Ukraine, including our passport fees and orphanage donation.

We had sent our dossier in to Estonia to adopt Amanda the week we left for Ukraine, and when we returned, we learned Estonia approved us to adopt Amanda and in January our agency asked us to submit for a court date. We had no money left from all the fundraising we did for Kara's adoption; indeed, we had accumulated debt in excess of $3,000 and were in a panic, how in the world could we raise so much money in a short time?

We used income tax returns, economic stimulus money, did fundraisers and many friends donated money for our adoption. One very dear friend donated $1,000. In the end, we applied for, but we were turned down for a second grant with GOAF. We went to our credit union and took out a loan against our minivan to get the rest of what we needed. GOAF told us we could reapply for a grant upon our return home from Estonia, and we did. Thankfully, GOAF approved us for this post-adoption grant; it is a Godsend and with it, we can begin to pay back a portion of the $6,500 in adoption debts we still owe.

Gift of Adoption Fund came through for our family twice. We want to help them raise money for more families to adopt their children, and you can help with your very generous donations. Every time you read that family did not get a grant, realize this is because funding can only offer so many families the help they need. With more donations, more children will get the forever family they dream about every night as they sleep in their orphanage bed.


Alice said...

Thanks for this post, Kris! I don't think I realized you got the second grant. I am so happy for you!! Thanks for the encouragement today. I was so bummed, yesterday. Today I got good news! I posted on my blog if you want to read about it.:)

The Red Thread Kids: said...

thanks kris! and she's changed so much! :D love the Az look. Love it.

Alice said...

I keep coming back just to see that new picture. She is amazingly beautiful!!! That smile is so precious.

My three little girls

My three little girls
Finally got all three to smile at once