26 September 2013

ideas for giving

Ok.  I am going to try to make this quick, but y'all me + the words get all cozy when I sit down at the PC.

I think I mentioned this before, but I am going to go ahead and say it again.  While we were in "the waiting" part of our adoption, a few people {more than I would have guessed} said to us, "I'm so glad you are getting one from over here instead of paying all that money to another country.  There are kids here that need families too."  This always bugged me a bit, because I don't think it really matters where the child without a family is - nor do I think there is an "acceptable price" to pay for an adoption; like there is a cutoff of worth-it vs. overpriced.  Gross. 

However, I know there are people that fall into the camps of "help here" and "there is enough help here, help elsewhere."  (ie. local vs. overseas) I fall right down the middle, most of the time.

So today I have two ideas for how you can give, one for here and one for there.  Both of these ideas are in the vein of orphan prevention/family preservation.  Adoption is, of course, one way to ease the orphan crisis (and obviously, one I believe in wholeheartedly!) but there is SO MUCH more that can be done to help stop the growing number of orphans in the first place.  Many children become orphans as a direct result of poverty... living in one of the wealthiest nations in the world makes this idea so incomprehensible.

"Poverty is not necessarily an issue to solve; it is an opportunity to serve. As we go through each day, our heart's cry should be, Lord, where would you have me give, serve, and invest myself to bring hope to the poor?"
~Orphan Justice author, Johnny Carr

Poverty is an opportunity to serve.  Let that settle in for a moment.

I mentioned this yesterday, and I am going to expand on it today.  The caseworker that I work with most directly also stopped by the closet to chat with me on Tuesday.  She told me that their office is working on getting car seats for all of the caseworkers.  She reminded me of the cars eats that had been in the office when I first came to help sort through things in the spring.  One was expired.  She didn't know those things had expiration dates (some of you didn't either, am I right?)  She was explaining that it would be nice for each worker to have a dedicated car seat in case they need to transport children. 

Also?  She mentioned that sometimes the difference in whether or not a child comes in to foster care is a car seat.  Some children come in to foster care in this community because their parents do not have a car seat.  Y'all.  She also mentioned that the same circumstance is true for pack-n-plays.  Babies need a safe place.   Not all parents have the cash to drop on a pack-n-play.  I have two pack-n-plays in a closet right now.  They were generously given to me.  Not everyone has generous people in their lives supporting them.  This is an opportunity to serve right here in this community.  If you have (or know someone that has) a car seat or pack-n-play that can be donated, let me know.  We'll get it to the right place.  Of course, these items should be in nice condition. We can buy new pack-n-play mattress pads or sheets if yours are stained due to the horrible Rotavirus. {Oh, that might just be ours.}

If you are far off {or close-by but would rather help far off}, I get you.  And because I get you, I am going to go ahead and link you up with Compassion International again.  You can do more than sponsor a child there, so go ahead and really click through the links on their website. 

If you are interested in giving, serving, and investing yourself in a way to bring hope to the poor, as Johnny Carr says above, I urge you to consider sponsoring a child.  It is one of the best decisions our family has made.  Our bigger boys know about Uganda because that is where Junior lives.  We often pray for his family and their needs.  We talk about some of the challenges Junior faces, and write him letters to encourage him.  I mentioned before that we also get letters back from Junior.  These are such treasure.  We get to reach across the ocean and serve a family in poverty.  We get so much out of our sponsorship that the cost is no longer an issue.

 Compassion International is the real deal, they work with a local church and serve the local community.  They are continually seeking ways to bring about sustainable change in the communities they serve. Compassion International did reach their goal for Blog Month, but there are still plenty of children in need of sponsors.

If you ever, ever, ever, have any questions about sponsoring a child, I'm your girl. 

One more thing, if you've been thinking that you would like to help our local foster care supply closet with donations (see yesterday's post), but the shipping seems outrageous.  Might I suggest you bravely call YOUR local office and see what needs they might have?  I'd be happy to bounce ideas around with you.

P.S. the quote is from Orphan Justice, you HAVE to read it.  You just really should. 

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