I haven’t talked about money in a while- I try not to bore you too much! But we subscribe to “Adoptive Families” magazine (It’s great…. You can check it out online at http://www.adoptivefamilies.com/)
Anyway, when you subscribe to the magazine, they send you little articles monthly by e-mail of additional topics and stories they couldn’t fit in the magazine. This month, one of the topics was about how the economy has effected adoption. I was going to do a cut and paste number, however, 1-It was mega long and 2- It basically said it was “too early” to detect a trend with how adoption has been effected by this recent downturn in our economy. It did, however, share several families’ stories that were on both sides of the fence. It told of a family that registered their Dossier in China in January 2006 and were getting close to a referral (can you imagine waiting that long?) And the husband has been unemployed for several months and they know that they will be unable to afford to travel or donate the required $5,000 humanitarian fee to the orphanage. They are praying that they DON’T receive a referral anytime soon, because they said they would have to decline the referral. In China a minimum income of $30,000 per dependant must be proven to qualify for adoption. (i.e.: a family of four that are trying to adopt a third child must earn $150,000) Yikes.
Then, you had the opinion that adoption is not a luxury, it is considered a need and families are willing to beg, borrow, or steal to make adoption work. I think this might be the category we fall into (other than the stealing bit….) but I think that is easy to say when you are not facing financial ruin. My heart just went out to all of those families that were saying no to adoption because of the cost associated with it. The article provides links to need based grants and low interest loans. However- if you earn too much, you don’t qualify for a grant and if you don’t earn enough you don’t meet the sending country’s minimum income requirements and can’t qualify for a loan. Catch 22.
A trend is slowly emerging that more biological families are being forced to give their children up because they can’t afford the child’s most basic needs and less families have the resources to adopt these children. It’s a vicious cycle.
One crazy lady basically said “I’m happy that so many people aren’t adopting right now, it bumped us to the front of the list and made our process quicker” Whoa- what I have to say about that is not “blogworthy” for young audiences.
Anyway- how has this affected us personally? We are depending on God fully. We’ve had a handful of people give VERY generously. Every week we’ve had an inquiry about our financial needs and we’ve answered them openly and honestly- WE NEED! Deetzsie’s Treatsies (my side business making cookies for settlements at our law firm) donates 100% of proceeds to “Operation Baby Deetz”. Chad has D.J.ed a few school dances. We are eating out less; my excessive shopping habit has taken a permanent vacation (only with a few relapses). I am thinking about a fundraiser in the early fall (Maybe a BBQ or silent auction?) We have “Pampered the Chef” and Daddy is still selling crosses. Basically, every penny that goes into our account is classified as “a night’s stay in St. Petersburg” or “dinner for me and Chad in St. Petersburg”. It’s a whole new mindset. We lovingly joke that one generous anonymous giver has paid for “one leg” of baby Deetz. All joking aside- we have been so blessed and are trusting God to make this a reality.