A Way to Help Children Find Their Forever Families

“I want you to be my mommy.”

His words still stir a heaviness in my heart. It’s the words of the ones we left behind at the orphanage when we brought our daughter home. Everyday for a month, we left our apartment and rode down the dusty orange roads in a country in East Africa to the Babies’ Home. We sat and sang songs with the children, played games with them, and picked up crying babies and held them. While we bonded with our daughter, a level of bonding began with each of the twenty some children there.

Our children bonded with the children too. Our son was six and he became friends with the kids he played with every day. One day after the kids ate their posho(sort of like grits and beans) on their woven mats in the sun, our son joined in to dish duty with his new friend. They filled up a bucket with soapy water and another to rinse and dry them in the sun. This experience changed our children. They didn’t see them as orphans. They saw them as friends. Friends who were living a very different life, with no family to call their own. No bedroom to call their own. No savings account. No sports teams.

When we came home we were overwhelmed in the best way with our new daughter making us a family of five, with three kids six years old and under. Now it’s been eight years home and I still hear his voice sometimes. I still see the sadness in his eyes and wonder what happened to him. Did he get adopted? Did someone pay for him to go to boarding school? I dropped the ball on him by trying to stay afloat and take care of our own children. But I know there’s thousands like him. Hoping for a family, in an orphanage or foster care, waiting. “What can I do? We can’t adopt another,” I would often wonder.

That’s when my son decided to use his golf game to help raise funds to find families for others like the one we had to leave behind. At the start of his golf tournament, he posted and asked if anyone would like to pledge money per birdie for adoption. He named his campaign, “Birdies for Adoption” and shared a quick caption about his sister and how he wanted to raise money to help more orphans come home to families. He raised over $600 in two days! With a donor match pledge Carolina/Children’s Adoption Services has now, the money raised was doubled to $1,200 for our agency to continue our work of connecting orphans to families and bring them home!

One of the best parts about my son’s story is that he is raising awareness for the one we had to leave behind. Most people are not aware of the orphan crisis and the need for adoption as a last resort for children who cannot be reunified with their biological family. My son’s voice was the way others are hearing about these children in need of adoption. He has become an Adoption Ambassador and he is raising awareness and funds for children to come home to forever families just through his golf game.

Would your family consider joining us as Adoption Ambassadors? We have a goal of raising $100,000 by our Gala on November 19th. (We’d love for you to join us that night!) We have a generous donor who is matching all donations between now and our Gala! So every dollar raised is doubled!

That means every dollar equals two.

Every birdie pledge my son received mattered.

Every cup of lemonade your daughter could sell makes a difference!

Every gently used pair of shoes you sell could mean a donation doubled to find a family for a child who is waiting!

You can make a difference in a life by joining our agency’s efforts to find families for orphans and bring them home! Please consider becoming an Adoption Ambassador by donating today or by making a difference as a family though our Family Fundraising Challenge! There is great power in being on mission together a family, an agency, and a community! Here are more details about how you can join our Family Fundraising Challenge or simply make a donation:

1) Choose a way to raise awareness and funds.

2) Launch your campaign with this link to have your family and friends donate: https://childrensadoptionservices.org/donate/

Make sure to share that every dollar given is doubled!

3) Please let us know about your Family Fundraiser Challenge by tagging us on social media or emailing us at info@carolinaadoption.org

Thank you for considering being an Adoption Ambassador with us to advocate for children who need families! Together we can make a difference for children and families.

Written by Amy Terry, Family Engagement Specialist & Adoptive Mother