We are in the middle of the most exciting and most challenging time for us as a married couple…we are adopting!
Five years ago, in Milwaukee, we got married and thought it was a given that we would have children. However, about three years ago we found out that having children is not as “given” as we thought it would be. We were told that, barring a miracle from the Lord, we can't have biological children. We grieved the loss of everything that entails. We also realized that God had very clearly put us on the path of growing our family through adoption.
Five-and-a-half years ago, in Haiti, one of Jacky's nieces gave birth to an adorable, sweet, pinch-her-little-cheeks gem of a baby girl. The pregnancy was unexpected. Gem’s mother and father were both in high school at the time and unable to raise the baby, so Jacky’s brother and sister-in-law (Gem’s grandparents) have been caring for Gem since her birth. Over the past few years, as an extended family, we have all discussed and agreed that a kinship adoption would be best for Gem.
We loved the idea of adopting within our family. But because Gem lives in Haiti, even though we are related, we have to follow all of the Hague Convention Adoption processes that were put in place to prevent the trafficking of children. No loopholes. That means the blessing of our adoption also comes with the burdens of paperwork, long waits, and big fees. Our estimated total cost is $38,421 and we are on the “quick” end of international adoptions timeline with a guesstimated total time of 2 years.
We are working with a fantastic adoption agency (A Love Beyond Borders) within their specific “Haiti Kinship Adoption Program”. We are also incredibly encouraged to have connected again with Lifesong for Orphans. As you may remember, we worked with Lifesong in Haiti primarily focused on orphan prevention and jobs creation. Well, here in the States, Lifesong is a powerhouse working to help decrease the financial burden for adoptive families.
The total cost of our adoption feels overwhelming, so we are trying to look ahead just to the next step. We have completed our home study and are hoping that in 3-4 months we will have all of our paperwork together to submit our dossier (file) to the Haitian government. At that time, we will need to submit $8,435 to our adoption agency for the next round of services including document translation. We are incredibly humbled and thankful to be recipients of a $3,000 matching grant from Miriam’s Heart Adoption Fund, a grass-roots non-profit radically supporting adoptive families and Lifesong partner organization.
Our mid-term goal is to raise $3,000 in order to receive the grant in time for our dossier submission at the end of summer, although we will gratefully receive financial support until the adoption is finalized and we are home together.
We are so thankful for you! Thank you for your thoughts and prayers and friendship. Thank you for your willingness to jump into our story and be a part of God’s work in growing our family. We look forward to keeping you updated along the way and, eventually, celebrating with you once Gem is home.
STRIPE charges an online processing fee (2.2% +.30 USD per transaction). Your donations will be decreased by this amount. You may also send a check payable to “Lifesong for Orphans”. In the memo line please write “Meremable 9131”, to ensure it is credited to our account. Please mail to Lifesong for Orphans, PO Box 9, Gridley, IL 61744.
Lifesong has been blessed with partners who underwrite all U.S. administrative and fundraising costs (TMG Foundation and other partners). That means 100% of your donation will go directly to the adoption.
· In following IRS guidelines, your donation is to Lifesong for Orphans. This organization retains full discretion over its use, but intends to honor the donor’s suggested use.
· Lifesong is a 501(c)3 tax exempt organization. Individual donations of $50 or more and yearly donations totaling $250 or more will receive a tax-deductible receipt. Receipts for donations under $50 will gladly be sent upon request.