Blogging about life in Minnesota, raising our six kids with Down syndrome while battling Breast Cancer.

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor in the morning the devil says, "Oh shit! She's up!"

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Read the Fine Print

There is a popular photo listing sight that belongs to a grant-writing organization. For the purposes of clarity I will refer to them as "The Other" organization.  For a couple of years now their actions and motives have been questioned.  I firmly believe that it started out as a God-ordained ministry for GOD to get the word out about HIS children who lay dying all over the world for no reason other than they were not "perfect". But God created them, and they were perfect in HIS eyes.  It is absolutely true that several hundred children have found their way into the loving arms of families because of the exposure they received through this organization. But sometimes even God-ordained ministries, that start out pure and under HIS direction can come under the influence of the human spirit. It is the nature of we, as humans, to want to take control and forget where God was directing us.

I have applied for adoption grants, and needed to supply certain documents to do so. Usually it was only my homestudy and maybe a letter from my social worker saying we were qualified to adopt that was needed. The homestudy is the document that verifies we meet the income qualifications for international adoption and that we have a clear criminal history. A grant writing organization doesn't need to know any more about me than that. "The Other" organization has no reason to know more about me either.

But sometimes, when that human spirit gets in the way, the waters become muddy. What was once a clear-cut process turns into one large mess. That human desire to control gets in the way. Pretty soon a grant-writing organization starts to say things like, "It is our job to make sure these kids get into good homes." No, actually, it is not. Especially if the grant-writing organization is not a licensed adoption agency. No, an adoption grant-writing organization's job is to verify a family is qualified based on the information provided by the family's social worker. It is not their responsibility to match a family with a child, it is not their responsibility to decide a child isn't a "good fit" for an applying family. No, they are a grant writing organization. Nothing more.

Several months ago a family started the process to adopt three children from an Eastern European country. The three children this family is trying to adopt were found on Grace Haven Ministries and Life to Orphans. Later it was learned the children were also listed on "the Other" grant writing organization's website and had grants available. That is where the trouble started. The director of "The Other" grant-writing organization went so far as to contact USCIS, without authorization to do so, to inquire about the family's financial ability to adopt as well as making false accusations about their ability to parent the children they are trying to bring home. This step in her actions has brought about changes within USCIS and who has access to information. Apparently the Department of Homeland Security wasn't as tight as it needed to be when it came to international adoption approvals. Supporters of "The Other" grant writing organization have blasted those who pushed for change. Saying those who filed reports to USCIS that lead to the investigation have no made it more difficult for adoptive families. Apparently corruption is good if it serves them well, but if that corruption turned against them they'd be hollering from the hilltops. The same things were said when I raised the alarm about what was happening with Serbian adoptions and the investigation that brought to light a corrupt facilitator. I was told that Serbia was the
"cheapest easiest country in the world to adopt from now go down the drain right in front of our eyes since you adopted. "
Interestingly, since that investigation 2 years ago, MANY more Serbian kids have gone to homes, two of them in my own house! Eliminating the corrupt piece of the puzzle decreased the cost by $6-$7000. Darkness doesn't like light. Not at all.  The same people who screamed about the changes in Serbia are those who aren't happy about the changes within the USCIS.

"The Other" organization went on to contact the family's social worker to say they believed the family had forged the social worker's signature on the homestudy.

"The Other" organization established a Whistleblower policy, and yet one of their paid staff has spent the last week bullying people who he/she believes to be "trouble makers", and flat our ordering adoptive families who are in process to sever ties with specific people or their own adoptions will be jeopardized. ( Here is some suggested reading on those very actions.)

What has come to pass, is "The Other" organization - remember they are a grant-writing organization, not a licensed adoption agency - has chosen to pretend the family applying for the grant for those three children doesn't exist. They don't think the family should adopt these children (remember that licensed agency part?) Never mind they have been provided with all the documentation necessary. (not necessarily what the organization is requesting, because at this point it's gotten ridiculous.) Instead they have chosen to not only continue to collect money for those children, but to continue advocating for a different family to go get them. They have been contacted by Grace Haven Ministries, "asking them to please be sure they were being open with the public who might be reading those children's profiles."

No response has been received indicating "The Other" organization has any intent on acknowledging this and instead continue to advertise the children.

From Grace Haven Ministries,

"No child is officially "taken" until an their referral is received in country, but when a group KNOWS a family is in process for the children and decides they don't want the family to, they SHOULD NOT be able to mislead the public and hide grant monies away.
GRANT ORGANIZATIONS  are NOT agencies. Look over closely the fine print. PRAY PROTECTION over the families who are victimized while trying to adopt. Adoption is hard enough! 


Melissa said...

I just went and looked and it says
'On Hold' now. That's a way big improvement over 'still collecting money as if they are still available...'Ugh. So grateful now that things happened like they did last year. HE is good. HE always takes care of us.

Leah S. said...

Yes, it has just happened in the last hour or so I'm told. It doesn't say they're on hold FOR, but...well...details right?

Kate said...

How does "The Other" organization have ANY idea who would be a good fit for ANY child they have listed on their site? It's not like they have MET the children they have listed, so how in the world can they have any idea who is or is not a good fit for any child? That's asinine!

The Hill Family said...

as a fellow mom, my heart goes out to you. as a fellow adoptive mom... even more. i am so sorry. THIS is the stuff that gives international adoption a bad name to the general public. i will continue to pray for all those being affected by "the other" - especially the children. you are lifted up!

Jennifer said...

This is the dark underbelly of adoption. I am praying for this family and this organization. I pray that the veil may finally be lifted so that the good of this organization can be fully realized.

deanie said...

There is a little girl that sits alone in Russia and will probably never come home now due to the ban. "The Other" stopped and tormented her adopting family for over two years. Her loving Mama and Papa here, in the USA, fought so hard and people gave a total of 35, 000 to this little one's grant. Children remain alone, families reputations are marred, those considering adoption are dismayed. Ego should not be involved when these children's lives are at stake. Unfortunately, it is.

Stephanie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ingrid said...

I just don't understand the abject hatred of this family from those on "The Other" side. It makes me cringe. :(

eliz said...

I personally feel that if I ever tell anyone I'm working for God- it is mis-representation. He has not come down to hire any of us. He does however send us our children, because with the corruption- only by the grace of God did I get my last 3 boys home!
(((HUGS))) Just my humble opinion!