Nine years ago, we shared a story about Melia, a little girl with major congenital heart disease who joined her family after they saw her on Holt’s waiting child photolisting. Read an update on Melia today from her parents, Ryan and Katie!
Hannah and Paulo Lee were nearing the end of their international adoption process from Korea when COVID-19 became a global pandemic — shutting down travel and causing obstacles they never could have expected.
Three years ago, we were a family of three and we desired to have one more child. However, this time God led us on a journey of adoption to grow our family. After many months of praying, we decided to adopt from South Korea. We quickly finished our homestudy and were matched the following summer.
It was in June of 2019 when we finally got to see what our son looked like. We now had a face in our minds of the child we had been praying for. Using Holt’s timeframes provided, we expected to meet him in person in about a year.
If you’re considering older child adoption, one of the best things you can do is seek advice from other families. Families who have worked through many of the same fears or concerns you’re now grappling with, and who have gone through the experience of helping an older child adapt to a new country, culture, language — and, in many cases, to life in a family instead of an institution. Families who have learned how to help their child heal from trauma and long-term institutionalization, and how to build a loving, trusting bond with a child who may have never experienced that kind of bond with a caregiver or family member before.
View the slideshow above to hear from a handful of Holt families who have adopted children at older ages. You can also read more in-depth stories about these families below and, if you would like more advice, you can contact an adoption service specialist to get in touch with an advocate family directly!
When prospective parents Ryan and Katie first saw Melia’s face on Holt’s waiting child photolisting, they were saddened to learn that this smiling little girl had major congenital heart defects. But instead of giving into fear, they decided to hold on to hope and joy.
On her son’s 23rd birthday, adoptive mom Lu Adair writes a letter to her son’s birth mom — sharing about the kind, sensitive and talented young man he has become. This post originally appeared in April 2016.
To the birth mother of my son,
Twenty-three years ago you brought a beautiful baby boy into the world. For reasons only you understand, you were unable to care for him. That’s okay; I’m the last person who would judge you. Over the years, others have asked why you could not care for him. It’s really none of their business. I think it shows how much they do not understand about life. Continue reading “To the Birth Mother of My Son”
Ready to adopt, but short on funds, Kevin and Sarah Brown reach out to their community — and learn a beautiful lesson in return.
After watching a documentary about children growing up in orphanages in China, Kevin and Sarah Brown decided to build their family through adoption . “We reached out to our local homestudy agency and to Holt and started barreling down the path," says Sarah.
While the Browns had ample resources to care for a child who needs a family, what they didn’t have the funds needed to adopt. Determined, they started to research different ways to fundraise. They planned a garage sale at their church and held a benefit concert featuring singer-songwriters from their hometown. “We raised almost $7,000 in one weekend from those two events, which is pretty incredible,” Sarah says.
While family and friends rallied around them, they realized how much just sharing their story would inspire their extended community to support their adoption. “We created a blog so people could have insight into why we’re adopting,” Sarah says. They also built a profile on Adopt Together — a crowdfunding site that helps families raise funds to cover their adoption expenses.
Key to their story was the fact that their daughter, Julia, had special needs that might require medical care or specialized therapies once home — an extra expense that more and more adoptive families are now facing. Recognizing this growing need, many organizations now offer grants specifically for families adopting children with special needs, including Holt.
Julia had fairly severe developmental delays when she joined her family. But through physical, occupational and speech therapy — and most importantly, the devoted loving care of her parents — she made rapid progress. Through the generosity of their community, the Browns were also able to save for the cost of her therapy — which, “oh my goodness, got expensive,” says Sarah.
“Don’t be bashful,” Sarah says to those who are just starting to raise funds for their adoption. “You just have to put yourself out there and be vulnerable. And then get ready for an outpouring of love and support.”
For Kevin and Sarah Brown, adoption felt like a natural choice. High school sweethearts from Nashville, Tennessee, they – like many young couples — knew they wanted a family someday. But also like many young couples, they weren’t in any hurry. “Then we turned 35,” Sarah says. After watching a documentary about children growing up in orphanages in China, they made up their minds. Continue reading “No Holding Back; How One Family Funded Their Adoption”
Every day 2-year-old Shelby Jane spent in an orphanage in China, she grew weaker. She needed to join her adoptive family — and fast — but finances stood in the way. That’s when a Holt donor stepped in to help.
Two-year-old Shelby Jane had a hole in her tiny heart, a blood condition called thalassemia and chronic cases of pneumonia and bronchitis that caused her to be hospitalized just about every month of her 24-month life. She could not speak, could not crawl and could not chew food. Every day she spent in an orphanage in China, she grew weaker.
Her adoptive parents, Michelle and Adam Campbell, needed to bring her home — and fast.
“We knew we needed to go get her because she wasn’t getting the care she needed. Waiting,” Michelle says, “wasn’t an option.”
“If I was still in China, I wouldn’t have glasses, I wouldn’t have a new wheelchair, I wouldn’t have such good food, I wouldn’t have surfing or swimming or basketball, I wouldn’t have my church friends, I wouldn’t have camping…”
Eric said these things to me a few weeks ago on a Sunday afternoon. I was working in the kitchen and he was seated at the dining room table and just talking to me with his usual happy chatter. Without any prompting from me, he started listing a very long list of things he was thankful for.
This excerpt is from a story by adoptive dad Tom Court, who adopted his son, Eric, when he was 12 years old. Read the full story!
One adoptive mom shares how the loss of their son moved her and her husband to sponsor a child in his honor.
We adopted our daughter, Amanda, from Korea in 1987, through Holt. We adopted our son, Gregory, from Korea, through Holt in 1991. Both of our children have brought joy and love to everyone they’ve met. Continue reading “We Can Help This Child…”