Glory Be! She's FREE! We have a new Daughter!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

More to pray about...

WOW!! What a week (it's only Tuesday)! This is going to be a lengthy post, but I want my family and friends to know what we are facing. PLEASE join with us in prayer this week regarding the following issues (K. Lunceford did a great job describing the situation):

$$$ AWAA Rate Increases $$$

I found out late last night (hubby is away on business) that if we don’t receive our referral by November 1 we will be required to pay approximately $2,500 more than what was expected of us in the original estimations provided to us by our adoption agency. As of November 1, the International Program Fee will be $7,500 instead of $5,000. A $385 post-placement administration fee has also been added. . We will be given a more thorough explanation on a conference call next Thursday of why this all came about and what it means for us. In the meantime, here are some things that we know are contributing to the new fees:

New capacity-building fee by the Ministry of Women and Children’s Affairs
MOWA has mandated a capacity building fee so they can hire more social workers and purchase computers to process adoptions. MOWA’s role is a critical one when it comes to getting families through court, so these changes are encouraging even if they do come with a price.

Transitional Home Costs
Unlike most agencies, AWAA cares for the children it plans to place in homes. These children come from difficult situations. Some are malnourished and many get sick with common cold, pneumonia or parasites. AWAA doesn’t want to merely "keep" the children until families come for them, but feels responsible to provide them the best treatment and care possible. Medical care of children, especially when they first arrive at the transition home is quite high. AWAA hires qualified nurses and has a lower nannies-to-children ratio so that the children can get a more personalized care than they would at an orphanage. AWAA also provides transitional services such as hiring English teachers and an American social worker to help the children adjust better. All of these things involve significant financial undertaking.

And then there’s the reality that inflation and the weakening dollar has led to formula and diapers becoming a lot more expensive than in the past. For example, the costs of things such as formula and diapers in Ethiopia have increased by 400%.

Exceptionally Tiny Babies
Yesterday, the Forrest family found out that their 4-month daughter is in the hospital with pneumonia and diarrhea. She is only 6.8 lbs. and is on oxygen. This is starting to become a common trend, Karen Bowman (number 2 in line for a girl) sums it up best on her blog:

"We’re starting to see the effects of the drought and famine that occurred earlier this year. Lately the babies that have been referred to families are very small compared to children who were referred to families earlier in the year. Some of the children have come into orphanages severely malnourished and have to be nursed back to health before they can be matched with families. I realize now that this is most likely because of the awful conditions in the country, and because our agency is working with some orphanages that take in children from outside the capital city in the rural regions which suffered the effects more directly. "

Pray for the Forrests, for their baby, and for all the other babies who are fighting for their health while they wait to travel home. Please pray also that our daughter, Ava Joy will receive the care she may desperately need to stay strong and healthy for us to meet her and then travel to bring her home.


Duni’s Transition Within AWAA

Finally, we also learned yesterday that Duni, our family coordinator, will be moving to Ethiopia in November to oversee things from there:

"Duni will focus on developing our Ethiopia program to respond to the growing numbers of families pursuing adoption from that country. It was decided that Duni would be most effective by overseeing the intricacies of the program and the transitional home by being on location in Addis Ababa. Her last day in the corporate office will be Wednesday, November 26. Duni says, “I love working with the families here but I am looking forward to meeting all of them personally as they come to finalize their adoption. I feel that my move will better serve families as I will be able to be in the frontlines of their adoption.”

***One day Ava will learn of all the miracles that took place in bringing her home to her forever family. I can't wait to tell her of God's provision***

Our children will also serve him. Future generations will hear about the wonders of the Lord. His righteous acts will be told to those not yet born. They will hear about everything he has done. Psalm 22:30-31

1 comment:

Cindy Foote said...

Kara and Portilla Family - It was wonderful meeting you face to face today. Thank you for driving so far to meet with all of us. What a precious family you have! We're waiting with you side by side! Blessings,
Cindy Foote