There are approximately 153 million orphaned children in the world. That’s an unfathomable number. Yet even this number does not begin to cover the depth of the orphan crisis. This number excludes institutionalized children, children on the streets, or children who are at risk, neglected or abused. Of these children, only .5% will have the opportunity for international adoption. This means that our care for the orphan has to extend beyond adoption.
But what does this look like?
(un)adopted exists to equip the Body of Christ to manifest the gospel to vulnerable children by sharing with international churches the biblical mandate to care for vulnerable children while also providing them with necessary resources and trainings to minister to the spiritual and physical needs of vulnerable children. By empowering the local church and community to care for the fatherless, we seek to holistically care for children in their physical, emotional, spiritual, and social needs. Through this work, stories are redeemed, lives are transformed, and the gospel is made known.
We have two separate partnerships in Liberia, but each serve their own unique roles in fulfilling the mission of (un)adopted. Our partners teach Life Skills to orphaned and vulnerable children while also managing the Orphan Director Network—a group representing 35 orphanages that meets quarterly—and hosting countrywide Caregiver Conferences twice a year. In addition to teaching Life Skills, our partners own a sewing center that is used to teach sewing skills to the children so that they might have the some knowledge and experience to enter into the workforce.
un)adopted’s partner in Togo saw a particular need to help equip older orphaned children who would soon be aging out of the system with desperately needed life skills. In response to this, he formed a program that specializes in training these children/young adults in three specific areas: Agriculture (corn), Farming (animal breeding), and trades. This program also incorporates evangelism and discipleship courses as well. In the past it has been conducted 2 times a year, with each training being 10 days. There are three orphanages that have been involved with this program in the past, affecting over 200 children!
Herbie Newell met a local Ugandan pastor while in Uganda talking with officials about international adoption. This pastor had moved to Busega (a small community outside of Entebbe) and planted a church there. The new church, King Jesus Church, began to see a real need for care for orphaned and vulnerable children in the area (specifically deaf and blind children). In the culture, if you are deaf or blind or disabled in some way, you are literally treated as cursed. The church felt called to minister to these children but didn't know how. Through this new friendship and partnership, Busega Community School for the Deaf and Blind was opened in 2011. The school now has more than 30 children (all deaf or blind). (un)adopted partners in financially helping equip and staff the school, along with purchasing and developing new land for the church (so they don't have to rent property in town anymore). We also walk alongside Pastor in strategy for orphan care and furthering of the gospel.
(un)adopted partners with a boys’ home in the Dominican Republic that ministers to boys who have no one to care for them, rendering to lives on the street. We partner with this boys’ home currently by advocating and leading an annual construction team that has helped in building some of the homes and classroom spaces on the property.
(un)adopted partners with a girls’ home in Guatemala that focuses on HIV+ children and teen moms (along with their babies) who have experienced sexual abuse. Throughout the year, (un)adopted takes two or three trips to Guatemala in order to provide Caregiver Education training, being instructed by Lifeline’s social workers. While social workers conduct the training sessions, teams care for the children, minister to the mothers, and assist in any ongoing projects happening at the home.
There are at least 20 million orphaned and vulnerable children in India, the second-most populous country in the world. Located in South Asia, India’s population is about 82% Hindu, 14% Islamic, 2% Christian and 2% Sikh. (un)adopted® partners with two ministries in India — STEPS Home in Chennai and Hannah Krupa Child Care Center in Bangalore.
(un)adopted partners with a ministry in Peru seeks to introduce vulnerable children to the hope of Jesus Christ by providing holistic, individualized care in a healthy family environment. They just recently purchased land in the city and are hoping to expand to have an "older boys" home in the city, with the younger boys remaining at the home outside of town.
A member of our (un)adopted staff lives in Colombia and has connected us with a church in Colombia that is working to connect with the Foundation for the Assistance of Abandoned Children (FANA) in the city of Bogota. The hope for this partnership is to provide children with discipleship, education, and care through a relationship with the local church.
(un)adopted partners with a Methodist children’s home in Costa Rica, and we offer Caregiver Education Training to the caregivers at the home. As of right now, we are looking to expand our ministry by establishing more connections with local churches and communities in Costa Rica.
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