Born without arms, George Dennehy barely survived life in an orphanage before he was adopted. Today, he advocates for children like he once was — children whose lives could be saved through sponsorship.
Twenty-five years ago, in a Romanian orphanage, a doctor attached a death certificate to a baby’s crib. Though still alive, the tiny child was terribly malnourished and sick. The doctor filled out all the information except the exact date and time of passing, attached it to the crib and walked away.
UPDATE: We shared about Carter in 2018, but he still needs a permanent, loving family of his own! Since that time, he completed the fifth grade and improved his soccer skills. Carter also shares that he hopes to be a martial artist one day — combining his love for competition and physical activities.
Carter excels in his science and history classes, and he can memorize material with ease. He is a talkative and extroverted boy, making him a natural leader in class! When he faces a problem, Carter solves it quickly and always asks for help when he needs it.
Carter is sweet, gentle and helpful to those around him. He enjoys gardening and harvesting the home-grown vegetables at his care center, and he also likes to take care of the younger children.
At 11 years old, Carter dreams of having his own parents and siblings one day. He hopes to be cared for and loved by his adoptive family, and he can’t wait to make memories with them!
When Holt staff member Celeste Snodgrass had the chance to meet her sponsored child, it affirmed her belief that sponsors are the key to keeping children out of orphanages — and with their families.
Celeste slipped off her sandals and swung her legs out of the SUV and into the squishy, dark mud. Looking at her surroundings, she couldn’t believe she was here. Lush palm groves lined the rutty, narrow dirt road that led her to a small collection of thatched houses raised on wooden stilts.
In developing countries around the world, going to school means much more than learning.
But before children can go to school, they need — and are often required to have — specific school supplies. The cost of supplies and uniforms are often too high for families living in poverty — causing children to drop out early. Below, we list five ways that your gift of school supplies can change kids’ lives.
UPDATE: We shared Cole’s story in 2018, but he is still waiting for a permanent, loving family! Since that time, Cole’s cognitive, social and language development have significantly improved. At school, Cole enjoys reading, memorizing and asking a lot of questions for better understanding. His teachers share that he has made remarkable progress!
His sense of humor is apparent, and he loves to build relationships and laugh with his peers. More recently, he has enjoyed playing with cars and reading books. He also loves reading and learning about animals!
Cole is increasingly independent and confident with his motorized wheelchair. But even though he can move from place to place, Cole dreams of walking one day. His curiosity is stronger than ever before, and he hopes to explore the world around him by foot.
A Special Blessings grant is available to help the right family bring Cole home!
Amid an orphan care crisis in South Korea, Holt sponsors and donors help care for children in greatest need — and support a long-term solution.
In South Korea, a 1-year-old sits in a crib. Surrounded by other children, in identical cribs, she lifts up her arms as her caregiver walks past. Her caregiver lovingly picks her up, then places her on the floor to play with the toys that she shares with everyone else. She cries, desperate for one more moment of attention.
She’s healthy, developing well, “a lovely child,” as her caregivers describe her. But she will most likely never have a loving, permanent family of her own.
For Jerrod and Melissa Adair, meeting their sponsored child in Mongolia was not just a blessing. It was a dream come true.
Jerrod and Melissa Adair stood on a street corner in front of a large shopping mall in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. They had traveled nearly 6,500 miles from their home in Oklahoma, and now waited in anticipation with toys in their arms. When they turned the corner, they recognized them immediately.
“One was dressed in a beautiful red dress, and as I turned the corner, I saw they’re twins,” Jerrod says. “A double blessing!”
Each holding onto their mom’s hand, the twin sisters walked toward them in matching frilly red dresses, striped tights and white sandals. For over a year, Jerrod and Melissa had read about, and prayed for, these girls and their family. But in that time, they had developed a special connection with one girl in particular — Narantuya, their sponsored child.
In her early teens, Devi thought she’d never be able to attend school. But then, Holt sponsors lifted her family out of the darkness.
When Devi imagined her life, it looked a lot like her mother’s. She would never learn to read or write. She would get married and have children at 15 or 16. She would work on the farm or do chores for a wealthy family. Life would be difficult.
UPDATE: We shared Rowan’s story in 2018, but he is still waiting for a family! Since that time, Rowan has continued to work hard in school — especially in math, history and geography. Rowan’s teachers say that he’s the best student in class, and he’s always eager to learn. His love for learning and speaking English also continues to grow — grasping any opportunity to practice his vocabulary.
His health has also improved with yearly checkups and maintenance medication. Still full of energy, Rowan loves to interact with others, play games and dance to music. But he also enjoys being in a quiet space, where his caregivers say that he often reflects about his day.
Rowan looks forward to having a loving, permanent family of his own. One of his favorite memories was when he saw his friend go home with her adoptive parents — hoping that, one day, it will be his turn.
A $7,000 Special Blessings grant is available to help the right family bring Rowan home!
Before a sponsor starting supporting her, Mekdes wasn’t sure if she could even stay in school in her rural community of Ethiopia — much less follow her dream of becoming a doctor.
Eighteen-year-old Mekdes dreams of becoming a doctor one day. Today, she is close to realizing her dream. Ten years ago, however, Mekdes’ future seemed uncertain.
Though bright and driven, Mekdes faced overwhelming challenges, and her family’s economic status seemed to dictate another path entirely — a path not nearly as bright, and certainty not one that would lead to a medical profession, or even an education.