Friday, April 30, 2010
I am so thrilled to announce that our very first kick off fund raiser was a huge success!! I have many pictures coming from the event from our photographer but in the mean time I am borrowing my sister's pics that she took.
We held the event at the amazing, historic, Hermitage Hotel in Nashville. There was a silent auction before the event with 50 different items. The event opened with Stacy Case, news anchor/reporter for Fox News, talking about the story she did on Ordinary Hero for the news this past year and what it meant to her. She was awesome! I then spoke and shared the heart of Ordinary Hero and how it started. There were then 3 Ordinary Heroes that came up and told a 5 minute version of their story. We had one on international adoption in which we helped connect a child from Ethiopia to his family here in the United States. There was another family which spoke about being a foster parent to a child we connected them with. There was also a story from an outreach volunteer who shared what reaching out to help meant to their family. After they spoke, we followed that with this video that I put together which captures the heart of what we are doing. We then had our chairs of the event come and ask for people to prayerfully consider giving to our organization. That was followed by Tyrus Morgan, an awesome artist who also has adopted from Ethiopia, who came up and sang 3 songs for us all to end the night.
So there you go. You now have a feel for what the night entailed. "But I never received an email or notice about it." you say. Well, there is a reason for that. I have such an awesome event committee that by the time they got done selling tables for the event.....we were sold out! That is a good problem to have but we realize we will need to go to a bigger venue next year.
I am just amazed! I am amazed at God, who brought such amazing people on board with this event. And I am amazed with how smooth everything went for our first kick off fundraiser for Ordinary Hero. I feel more and more people are catching the vision to help children who need them to be an Ordinary Hero. By the end of the night, especially after the video, people were moved to action. I feel God has some amazing things in store for our organization and we will continue to change as many lives as we can.
You may watch the video below but you will have to silence the music at the bottom of the blog or you can CLICK HERE, to go directly to the link to watch. I wanted to show what we are all about and what our mission is through this video.
Also, if you are saying "Oh, poop! I would have loved to have gone to that banquet." and you still would like to make a donation and sew into the foundation of our organization please click on the donate button on the right side of this blog to make a donation. We are headed to Africa in July which will take a LOT of money to get us there as well as the clothes and donations that we would like to supply the children. We are also excited about working directly with waiting children once we get there and plan to find these children their families. We then plan on planting a financial seed into the adoption of those special children with whom we connect. Lots of great things going on and we welcome you to be a part of it through your giving. Thank you, as always.
Now enjoy the video. (silence the music at bottom of the page first)
Monday, April 26, 2010
If you would like to volunteer or if you have friends, co workers, and you would like to come together as a group then please go to the site listed below to sign up as a volunteer. You can list Ordinary Hero as the group name. A volunteer application must be filled out for each person. You will then be contacted. If you have any questions you can contact Mary Crutcher, the director of the women's mission, directly at 312-1571. Also, please reply to this post at email@example.com if you plan to volunteer so we can keep track of you in our data base and get you on the schedule. Let us know which days and times you would be interested in. You can choose any day and any time frame you like.
Also, items needed for the new updated facility (which is awesome...I took a tour!!) are twin flat sheets and pillow cases, plastic pillow covers,new twin mattresses that have a plastic cover.
Also, pictures and art for the walls. If you are a local artist that would like to donate your work to be hung in the mission, contact us. Also, plants are needed.
One last thing, if you know of any day camps that would host these children in the summer please contact us. They desperately need things to keep them busy during the summer.
Thank you for volunteering and helping to change the world for one. You never know what a difference you can make in a child's life by the simple gesture of spending time with them and giving them the encouragement they need. This can be that "something" when we say to ourselves, "I just want to do something to help, but I don't know what to do."
Thursday, April 22, 2010
Sunday, April 18, 2010
There were around 10 people who stepped up to help donate items to baby Tiffany, whom I posted about in a previous post. Thank you, thank you to all of you who stepped up to help.
Now, I must ask for your prayers for a friend who has literally caused me to stop and evaluate everything that is important in life. Her name is Lane Ann and she shines with the courage and strength of Christ as she fights for her life. I met her a couple of years ago in my hometown. She is a bible teacher at a Christian school.Her faith has inspired and brought many teens to God. She is around my age or so and she is also the sister in law to one of my adoption friends whom I've grown to love in my community. She called me and had me come in to share my testimony in an assembly to speak to all the highschool students in her school. Her faith radiated then and it is her true hope now. She has always lived her life to the fullest and never had any problems. Last year, she had some pains that she went to the Dr about. They discovered cancer that had already spread to a stage 4. As this completely shocked and rocked their world they have remained such true examples of Christ through their painful walk. Her husband is in the ministry and she and he together started a blog and have been so real and so candid and so transparent to show everyone truly where their strength comes from as they paint a picture of their lives through this struggle.
This blog needs to be read by everyone. We all feel we have problems at times and we all need to be reminded that God is with us through our storms even when we feel we don't see HIM. It has reminded me that our problems in life don't compare with life itself......and after life... there is God and that's it. He is the one with us now and waits for us then to live free of problems and pain.
Please pray for the Miller family as Lane Ann is said to be growing weaker. Pray for her, her husband, and their children. May God wrap his arms around them during this time. And may their faith continue to inspire and draw others closer to God as their blog radiates God's strength in them through such an unthinkable time.
One thing we can all do is pray....it is what get's them through this.
Get your tissues and visit their blog to get an idea of how to pray and be reminded of where all our strength comes from. Go back to their older posts as well. The picture her husband paints and his perspective of God as his heart is being ripped out is just awe inspiring. You will be changed.
Saturday, April 17, 2010
Also, we sent out a Speak Up about a sibling group in Ethiopia whose father was dead and their mother had recently been murdered. They were a boy age 3, a girl age 2 and another girl age 1. They were in desperate need of a family and they now have gotten 5 inquiries. Yay again!!
We will be sending out a Speak up soon about a little girl. I am still waiting on her age and medical prognosis but she is beautiful and very fragile. She is extremely malnourished and needs a family. She is little bitty....can't be older than two.
I am working with a director of an agency who goes into extreme poverty stricken areas in Ethiopia and finds these children. She travels once a month, herself, and finds these children in very run down orphanages. We will be meeting up with her on our Ethiopia trip in July and personally meeting these children and advocating for them. They are all in great need. I can't wait to get my hands on them and share their personalities and their needs with all of you. I am confident that children will get adopted through our efforts of traveling to Ethiopia and connecting with them and making the orphan cry very loud and real.
Stay tuned for the upcoming Speak up email. If you are not on our list yet, you can contact firstname.lastname@example.org and just say "Add me to Speak Up" .
Thursday, April 15, 2010
She is requesting items for a young mother who recently gave birth to a preemie.
See her email.....
Here's the info on the young woman, Jasmine, I was telling you about.
If you need any more information, let me know. We, through our
non-profit The Greenwood Experience, along with The Edge East, have
worked with this family since 2007.
Jasmine is roughly 19 years old. She has given birth to a 24 week
premature baby. The baby's name is Tiffany. Jasmine has
consistently held a job and is a high school graduate. She's lived on
her own since graduation, handles independence fairly well. She has
always had a means to provide for herself though she probably does get
some public assistance.
Baby Tiffany should be able to come home very soon as she now weighs
4lbs. The Grandmother is hosting a baby shower April 17th at 4 pm.
We are hoping to gather some gently used/new items to help give this
baby and her mom a great start!
If you would like to donate any baby items to little baby Tiffany and this young mother please contact
Kristi Spring via email at email@example.com to let her know what you would like to donate.
Also let her know that you saw this on the OH site.
Thanks to all of you Ordinary Heroes for giving so generously to those who need your help.
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Parents For Ethical Adoption Reform blog
You will see below the mention of all adoptive parents now having to be at their child's court date which will more than likely require a second trip to Ethiopia in order to bring your child home.
Also, there is mention of several orphanages that have been shut down after investigation. I am looking into whether my son's orphanage is one of them. It has the same name....hmmm??
Keep in mind that all of these changes are to better protect the children in Ethiopia that are getting adopted.
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Bureau of Consular Affairs
Office of Children’s Issues
Adoption Processing at the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa
April 13, 2010
The Federal First Instance Court of Ethiopia has announced that as of May 9, 2010, adoptive parents must appear at the federal court hearing for their adoptive child in order for the adoption to be approved. This new requirement will affect all pending and new adoption cases that have not yet been presented to the court. If there are two adoptive parents but only one parent can attend the hearing, the attending parent must have a power of attorney from the other. However, please note that if only one parent meets the adoptive child before the court date, the child will qualify for an IR-4, not an IR-3 visa (which means that the child will not become a U.S. citizen upon entry to the United States).
In addition, the Government of Ethiopia recently announced that they have revoked the licenses of nine orphanages in different regions of the country. Those orphanages are:
- Adera child orphanage
- Agar Lewegen orphanage
- Almaz orphanage
- Biruh Zemen orphanage
- Bitania orphanage
- Help for the Needy orphanage
- Holy Savior orphanage
- Kunket orphanage
- Tsega orphanage
The Government has informed the Embassy that all children in those orphanages have been moved to accredited orphanages, and the Ministry of Women’s Affairs has stated that those children should still be available to be matched for international adoption. Prospective adoptive parents should contact their agency or the Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MOWA) if they wish to confirm that the child with whom they were already matched is still available for adoption. When contacting MOWA, be sure to include the name of the child, the orphanage name and the adoption agency’s name.
Adoptive parents should be aware that in all adoption visa cases worldwide, an I-604 (Determination on Child for Adoption, sometimes referred to as “orphan investigation”) must be completed in connection with every I-600 application. Depending on the circumstances of the case, this investigation may take up to several weeks or even months to complete. Therefore, adoptive parents should not plan to travel to Ethiopia until they have confirmed with their adoption agency that their visa interview appointment has been confirmed. Adoptive parents should be aware that at any point that a consular officer encounters information that indicates that a child’s history may be different than documented, the consular officer is obligated to investigate the case further until it can be confirmed that the child meets the definition of “orphan” under U.S. immigration law.
The Embassy's Adoptions Unit can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please continue to monitor http://adoption.state.gov/ for updated information as it becomes available.
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
I know many have prayed for the newborn baby girl i posted about that was up for adoption. Amazingly that birth mom went from having no files to look at, to several files to look at, to choose a family for her daughter. She was taking the first few days to look over profiles when baby became ill. She had some mild complications that were then resolved. But the end result for that baby girl is that the mother decided to keep her and take her home. This is always the risk with domestic adoptions. It is always heartbreaking for the family involved trying to adopt the child but we can never judge until we have put ourselves in the shoes of a mother who just saw part of her own flesh and blood come into this world and then be faced with the brave choice to hand that child over. I am very grateful that there was not a family that had been involved in this adoption from the beginning. I think this is the way it should be. I think that adoptive families should always be notified for the first time after the child is born for the simple fact that the mother might always change her mind and it is less heartbreaking to be involved for a few days and it go south than to be involved for 9 months. But, that is ideal. There are many adoptions that do work out from the beginning but there are those that don't and it is very heartbreaking for the adoptive family. I have seen it many times.
BUT.....that child was prayed over more than she would have ever been because of all of you.....and the end result was that she went home with her young mother. So we must rest in the fact that that was God's will and then we must continue to pray for her and the life she will live with her biological mother. My guess is that the mother bonded with the child when the child became ill. I pray they have a beautiful life together. And God's hand is still on those whose profiles the mother was looking at. He still has a beautiful child waiting for them in His timing.
NOW....THERE IS ANOTHER BABY AVAILABLE
The director of this same agency contacted me about a 7 month old African American baby boy that is available now.
The birthmom prefers an African American or Interracial couple but will consider a Caucasion couple with AA children.
There was no alcohol or drug use during the pregnancy, however, the birth mother suffers from depression and there is a birth grandfather and uncle who are bi polar. The mother needs no financial help. The estimated cost of this adoption is $20-23,000.
The director only wants to see homestudy ready couples and those with profile/dear birthmother letter.
If you are a full Caucasian couple with no African American children then you would not qualify. If you do not have your homestudy ready then you would not qualify.
If you think you might be a great fit for this baby boy then contact
Adoption Associates, Inc
Now let's pray that this baby boy is guided into the arms of his new forever family.