501(c)3 Non-Profit | Empowering Haitian Families

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Why does JK Rowling Matter Anyway?

If you go to http://tomvanderwell.net/important-articles/ and read the second article, you’ll see a couple of important names. I think it’s worthwhile talking about why they are important. What are those names? JK Rowling and Lumos. JK Rowling, hmmm, I think I’ve heard that name before. JK Rowling is the author of the immensely popular and hugely wide selling Harry Potter book series. Please tell me you’ve heard of Harry Potter? The young wizard who takes on “He who must not be named” in a 7 book battle of good vs. evil. Some

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How Do We Pay For It?

How Do We Pay For It?

In our last article, we took a look at how to pay for caring for children in an orphanage and whether it was a good thing to collect “child care” funds from adoptive parents while their adoption was in process.   In a short summary, the risks and the drawbacks of such a funding arrangement outweigh any possible benefits to it. So now what?  If “we” aren’t going to pay for caring for children who are orphans that way, how do we pay for the cost?  Because we all know that children are

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Paying for Childcare – The State Department Says No?

Paying for Childcare – The State Department Says No?

Parents pay for their children’s needs, it’s that simple right? Well, not quite.   Let take a look at a couple of things. If you go to http://tomvanderwell.net/important-articles/  and scroll down to page 4 of the first article about how the US administration is about to make adoption harder, you’ll see a statement that seems like it’s not so simple…… Worse still, the proposed rules forbid families from paying for a child’s in‐country care once a match has taken place. This is a common practice, allowing parents to give their child quality nutrition, medicine,

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Seven Years

Seven Years

By Shelley Jean I feel like I have told the story so many times. The day that started like any other day. How we went to the store and bought flour and bananas and spent the day making tortillas. How later that afternoon, the very same grocery store that I bought the flour in came down in a crash that shook the island and killed so many people, some that I knew by name. I remember the helicopters, the airplanes that were landing every few minutes for days, the masks that we

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Isn’t the Hague Enough?

Earlier, we talked about The Hague and how it is more than just a city in Holland.  If you go over to this page and read the article about proposed changes that President Obama and his administration want to make to international adoptions, you’ll see 9 pages of information.   A very important point is at the bottom of page 2 and the top of page 3. Let me quote what that part says…… The State Department now wants to add another layer of accreditation for working in certain countries – something

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How Do You “Prevent” Orphans?

How Do You “Prevent” Orphans?

The first few times I heard the term “Orphan Prevention” I have to admit that my first reaction wasn’t positive.   Orphans are children, they are very vulnerable and often very fragile.    Do we really want to prevent them?   Isn’t that the type of thing that Germany in World War II was guilty of? Then I realized that wasn’t the type of thing that “orphan prevention” was referring to.  Whew, that made me feel better.   Let me walk you through the thinking behind the phrase…… Everyone has two parents

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The Vanderwell Rule of 50%

We’ve been talking a lot of numbers and statistics in terms of orphans, orphanages, numbers of adoptions and such. While I would not write about and reference numbers if I didn’t think they were either accurate or remotely close to the truth, I thought it might be good to introduce you to “The Vanderwell rule of 50%.” What does the Vanderwell Rule of 50% say? “If a statistic is being used to make or enforce belief in something and it is not from an immediately verifiable and credible source, then take that

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Who is an Orphan Anyway?

Who is an Orphan Anyway?

If you do a Google Search on the words, “orphan crisis” and read the first two or three headlines, it won’t take you long to see statistics like, “150 million orphans” or 147,000,000 orphans or things like that. Really bad and really scary statistics. But who really is an orphan? The definition that most big organizations (UNICEF) and others use as a way of attracting more support and more funding is pretty simple: If a child has: – One or fewer parents they are living with. – are considered vulnerable – to

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So What?

So What?

So what? So, like we talked last time, maybe 70% to 90% of the children living in orphanages are not orphans. That means that they have family. They have people who know about them and care about what happens to them. So what does that mean? A couple of things….. It means there are still a lot of orphans. If you take two generally accepted statistics about kids in Haiti you have the following: There are approximately 32,000 “orphans” in Haiti. Approximately 8,000 of them have no family members who can care

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The Hague – It’s Way More Than JUST a City in Holland

The Hague – It’s Way More Than JUST a City in Holland

If you ask most people what The Hague is, chances are they will give you one of two replies….. Isn’t it a city in Holland? It’s….  Wait, isn’t it…….  I don’t know. There’s another “Hague” out there.   And for those who are involved in international adoptions in any way, The Hague takes on an entirely different meaning.  If you go to the 1993 Hague Convention website, here’s what they wrote as an introduction: The Hague Convention of 29 May 1993 on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption

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