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Lilypie Kids birthday Ticker
Wednesday, June 13, 2007
Helping Hands
In January 2006, Jim and I signed up to take Mandarin class at the local Chinese language school. The school uses the facilities at a church whose congregation is primarily Chinese-American. It is run by the parents, who take turns as principal. Each year a different parent is chosen.

In January 2006, it was Hong. Hong, a Beijing native, had just received her referral. During our Sunday classes, she would pop in and show us pictures and give us updates. She travelled while we were in session and brought her daughter to meet us the first Sunday she was home. The school is and was dedicated to teaching Mandarin to children. The Chinese adoption community became aware of this school and worked with Hong to become a part of it. They opened their doors and hearts to us making us feel very welcome. Our children are welcome in their classes, and a new class was formed for adoptive and pre-adoptive parents to learn some basic Mandarin. We were invited to attend the Chinese New Year celebrations and even participated in the end of year recital with all the other students. The kids got quite the kick out of seeing a bunch of us adults stand up there and sing children's songs in Mandarin.

One of the other students in our class was Julia. Julia and her husband had a blended family of five. They had then adopted their first daughter from China in 2003, and their second in 2005. In fact, their second had only been home for a few months when class began. Julia's youngest son travelled with her both times. He even went back this last winter to travel with a family friend, a single mom who would need a helping hand.

Julia has a lot on her plate right now with two young daughters. Owen just graduated from high school and is leaving for boot camp on Monday. Another son just told her that he's getting married on Friday. He and his bride didn't want a fuss so they planned everything and just told their families to show up and enjoy the celebration. Plus, Julia works as a local liason for the adoption agency she used.

This agency recently called Julia. They have a young lady on their waiting list looking for a forever family. They asked Julia and her husband to take a look at her file and consider adopting her. They took the plunge and agreed.

This child is 13 years old and months from aging out of the adoption program. They are frantically working to get this completed before her 14th birthday, 12/31/07. Julia must have her adoption completed by that date. Her agency sent her old dossier with updated financials and family photos to CCAA and got pre-approval. The local social worker is waving the home study fee for a new home study. Fees are being waived wherever possible. They're trying to gather frequent flyer miles and work with airlines for airfare. The family admits they have no idea how they're going to pay for it, but they're going to do everything they can to make this happen. They're also looking into all available grants.

This 13 year old girl was abandoned at the age of 8 when she contracted pneumonia and was hospitalized for 6 months. Since then she has been in the care of her SWI. She has requested a forever family and also requested that she be adopted by an American family.

Another local friend, a member of our weekly playgroup, has generously offered a portion of the proceeds from her business. If you are a scrapbooker, please take a look at her site and consider making a purchase. You might want to let her know that you want to help Julia's adoption.

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