When our family adopted Miles and Keenan, we adopted Haiti, too.
We take the fact that our boys are from Haiti very seriously. It is our sincere desire and we put a lot of effort into making sure they keep their homeland in their hearts and minds.
For the years that we were in process with our boys, we watch Haiti suffer through political violence and hurricanes. Many times we hoped and thought, Where is the world? Why aren't people aware?
Unfortunately, it took an Earthquake 7.0 to grab the World's Attention.
Yesterday while talking with my mother, she encouraged us to Speak Up. To help put a REAL and Local face to this disaster in our local (very sheltered) corner of the world. To perhaps inspire or encourage others to give to Disaster Relief Efforts when they might not otherwise have done so.
So yesterday I took the paper up on their desire to find local families affected by the Earthquake. Dear Jill, whose 7 year old daughter Amandine is still in Haiti, their adoption halted now, also was interviewed by the paper.
And this morning, my boys adorable little faces are gracing the front page. And I pray that their little Haitian faces will help other open their hearts to give.
Already, my phone is ringing off the hook and my email is filling up with people asking what organization to donate to or how to give money to our particular orphanage.
We also contacted our Church and Cliff's company for help. While our church decided to pass on our plea for an additional offering to help the people of Haiti (and we're working very hard on trying to be Christian about this and approach the rejection with a loving and forgiving heart), Cliff's company COMPLETELY stepped up to the plate.
Next week they have a National Training Meeting in Atlanta for the launch of a new drug. Cliff's company always sponsors a "Wear Jeans for a Donation of $20" day during the training (these are big meetings with a lot of people). This year, they are going to donate all of that money to an Earthquake Relief fund. We are so grateful and pleased that they are doing this.
We try very hard to teach our children that in the light of resistance, to never give up. To teach them that ONE person can make a difference. I would encourage every adoptive family out there to open up their homes for a day, to share their story with others about their families and their precious children from Haiti (or still in Haiti). Because the likelihood of your inspiring others to give by your putting a 'real' face on this tragedy is pretty good.
For now, we are exhausted. Our hearts and minds hurt. We stayed up watching Anderson Cooper until midnight last night. We cried until we were cried out, and we were left with the exhausted, lingering headache.
Many good organizations are out there:
**Yele Haiti- Wyclef Jean's Haitian relief fund.
**You can text Haiti 90999 and it will give $10 to the Red Cross (and be added to your next cell bill.
** Celebrate Children International-- This is our adoption agency. They will give money directly to our orphanage, Petits Anges de Chantal.
** Real Hope for Haiti
** The Red Cross
** World Vision