The Discovery That Brought Tears to One Mom’s Eyes

A message to Holt child sponsors from Holt President Phil Littleton, sharing how one adoptive mom responded when she discovered all three of her children had sponsors.


All three of the Lafler children had sponsors while in care in Korea.
All three of the Lafler children had sponsors while in care in Korea.

Have you ever wondered what your sponsored child’s family would share with you if they had the chance?

Recently, I came across a story from a Holt adoptive mom who found out all three of her children had sponsors who cared for them before they joined her family.


Most likely, your sponsored child lives with their family in one of the impoverished communities where Holt works around the world. That’s because Holt’s first priority is to keep children in the loving care of their birth families whenever possible — and which sponsors help make possible through their generous monthly support. A smaller percentage of sponsored children live in an orphanage or foster home, and even fewer are on track to join a family through adoption.

But for the children who are waiting to join an adoptive family, sponsors step in during one of the most vulnerable times in a child’s life. They provide love and care for a child during that critical in-between time when they’re no longer with their birth family, and waiting to join a family through adoption.

Adoptive mom Amy Lafler didn’t learn about Holt child sponsorship until after her three children had joined her family. But when she did, she knew she had to find out if they had sponsors while in care in Korea. “We need to do this,” Amy thought. “We need to know if generous, caring people loved our children and hoped that they would one day have a forever family.”

When Holt informed Amy that yes, her kids were sponsored, she thought, “WOW! Someone HAD loved our children before we even knew they were ours! How amazing!”

Her next thought was, “How do we find them to tell them thank you?”


For each sponsor, Amy sent pictures and a note — “thanking them,” she says, “for loving our children and helping to provide for them while we could not.”

Amy quickly heard back from two of her children’s sponsors, and learned that one had been sponsoring children for 25 years and also had an adopted daughter from Korea. Grateful for their generous sponsorship, Amy promised to share updates about her children as they grew up.

“The very thought of sponsors makes tears gather in my eyes,” Amy wrote. “What a selfless act of pure love.”


Whether your sponsored child lives in a rural village in Ethiopia or a group home in China, is an older resident at Ilsan in Korea or is now with their adoptive family in the U.S., know that your generosity and kindness does not go unnoticed or unappreciated. And though you may never get to hear directly from your sponsored child’s family, let me be the one to thank you for your selfless act of pure love.

Phil Littleton | President & CEO

Have you visited Holt’s new digital service center for sponsors yet? With our new service center, you have even more opportunities to connect with your sponsored child. Visit to log in now!

Not yet a sponsor? You can provide everything a child needs to stay in the loving care of their family or help them thrive while they wait to join an adoptive family. Visit to learn about a child who needs you!

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