Adoption Funding More than just “Dollars & Cents” Meet Lifesong & Christi Ucherek www.lifesongfororphans.org
Why is this important?...
The “Wyatt’s” of the world are why it’s important!…
Wyatt – orphaned in Lithuania
Cleft lip & palate
1 finger on each hand
2 toes on each foot
Severe hearing loss
Congenital heart defect
Wyatt @ orphanage
Wyatt – in CA hospital after adoption
A Father to the fatherless…
“ sets the lonely into families….”
- Psalm 68:5,6
Naomi ~ before & after adoption…
Cost is a hindrance – seems ‘financially impossible’
Adoption ‘ ransom’
“… Son of Man gave His life a ransom for many” Matt 20:28
We are just instruments in God’s hands…God is “Jehovah-Jireh ”!
I. God’s Pull
Romans 8:15-17: “For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ.”
II. God’s Promises
2 Corinthians 9:8 : “God will generously provide all you need.”
Philippians 4:19 : “This same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus.”
Matthew 7:11: Jesus said, “If you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask him”
III. God’s Provision
Romans 8:32 “He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?”
Financial Need & Resources
Often the greatest challenge – cost of adoption
Overview of the Costs of Adoption
How much will it cost?
State Foster Care
Domestic Adoption – $8-25k
International Adoption - $20-$30k +
Adoption Funding Solution Tools
Fundraising Support (gifts, donations without a grant/loan)
Direct gift to cover adoption expenses
www.showhope.org & Other Orgs
Given without repayment or fundraising
Mirrors grace freely given to us
Grants range from $2,000-$10,000+
Disbursed directly to adoption agency
Based on financial need
Adoption Matching Grants
Matching Grants of up to $4,000/per child ($2500-$3,000 average)
Kingdom Activity: see adoption as “missions in reverse”… bringing the mission field home
LS offers a $1-for-$1 match – mobilizes the Body of Christ!
Lifesong provides ‘Adoption Support Raising’ kit
E.g. Harlow family - $2500 Matching Grant – raised over $11K
Average Scenario: Matching Grant of $2,500 - mobilizes an additional $5,000 - average total grant funds for your adoption = $7500
*Key Strategy: mobilizes Body of Christ and leverages funds to bridge financial gap
Adoption Matching Grants – the process
Opportunity to glorify God and mobilize the Body of Christ
Invite others to invest in the Kingdom
Overview of Process
Couple shares adoption journey & making needs known (i.e. letter, blog, Facebook, etc.)
Matching Grant $ amount – adds significant momentum
Lifesong writes Letter of Support – (adds validity to grant/support raising)
People can donate tax-deductible gifts to Lifesong ‘preferencing’ an adoption if done appropriately
- Church body becomes engaged – not just financially, but prayerfully, etc.
Funds are distributed to adoption agency on the child’s behalf
100% of donations allocated to adoption grants – no administrative costs!
Federal Adoption Tax Credit
Currently there is a federal adoption tax credit of up to $12,650 per child (for 2010) for unreimbursed “qualified adoption expenses.”
See IRS Tax Topic 607: Adoption Credit (www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc607.html), which provides general information about the current federal adoption tax credit.
Note: Please be sure to consult your tax adviser for additional information and to understand how the federal adoption tax credit works and may impact you.
Maximizes stewardship by utilizing Federal Adoption Tax Credit – reducing the initial, upfront ‘cash-flow crunch’
Interest-Free Loans allows family to capture $12,650 Federal Tax Credit
Couples sign a covenant agreement to repay
Monthly or Annually
(can use Fed Tax Credit to repay loan)
The $12K is repaid & then circulated through the next family
*Key Strategy: funds become self-sustaining , where the loan repayments each month/year help to fund new families
Other Tools & Ideas, cont’d
Federal (as mentioned previously)
Employer Adoption Assistance
A number of companies have adoption assistance programs built into their benefits with some providing between $2,000--$10,000
The military provides $2,000
Adoption Funding Tool
Help a WIDOW & ORPHAN!
Innovative tool to remove financial barrier
A team fixes up a widow’s home
Renovation provided for free to widow (donated labor & construction materials)
Sponsorship donations help fund adoption expenses
How does this help fund adoptions?
100% of donated sponsorships are used for adoption expenses
Disbursed as Adoption Grant & Adoption Loan (thru Lifesong)
Adoption Grants/Loans & Church Adoption Funds
How does an “Adoption Fund” fit with your church mission/vision?
Evangelize the lost
Adoption is evangelism at its core...
Edify the saved
Put faith in action; develop relationships/support
Minister to those in need
Millions of orphans trapped b/c of financial barrier
Be a Conscience in the community
As Church is involved, the community will see Jesus is alive and working in His people (Matt 5:16)
3 Options - in Creating an Adoption Fund
Church CREATES own 501c3 (non-profit organization)
Church MANAGES own funds, donations, distributions, screening, qualifying, etc.
Church PARTNERS with a group like Lifesong for Orphans, ABBA Fund, etc. to administer the fund on behalf of the Church
www.showhope.org for more info on these options
Option #1 - Creating own 501(c)3 Organization
Option #2 – Manage Fund in-house
Setting Your Course
8 Questions for creating grant guidelines
What types of adoptions will we fund? Who is eligible?
How far along in the process must families be in order to apply?
What percentage of the total adoption expenses will this grant supply
Who on the team will make the grant decisions?
How will the funds be disbursed?
What if any follow-up will be required from grant families?
Option # 3 – Partnering with an Organization to Administer Fund
Top 3 common ‘barriers’ & their solutions…
Barrier: Church staff “plate is already full” to administer fund
Solution: Lifesong can manage/facilitate the Fund & carry the administrative load on behalf of church, using mutually agreed upon criteria (reviewing applications, accounting, donor receipts, disbursing funds on behalf of adoption, etc.)
Barrier: Church feels uncomfortable/awkward approving/denying their own families (viewing financials, etc.)
Solution: Lifesong can provide all the screening, reviewing, approving/denying as a ‘partner’ on behalf of the church, using mutually agreed upon criteria for those decisions
Barrier: Adoption Fund is unfamiliar territory
Solution: Lifesong has passion, and expertise in adoption funding processes, maximize stewardship, use existing grant/loan procedures, IRS approved, ECFA approved (establishes financial integrity & avoids recreating the wheel)
Administration of Adoption Funds for Church at no cost to Church or Fund!
Benefits of using a Funding Partner
Flexibility - church can be as involved or uninvolved as desired
Quickly - fund can be established in 1-2 days
Administratively easy – Alliance partner will facilitate the Fund, provide administration (at no cost to the Church or Fund)
Qualify/approve families (based on mutually agreed upon criteria)
Administer the Funds, as agreed by Church/Lifesong partnership
Disburse funds on behalf of adoption expenses
Provide tax-deductible receipts, mailings, accounting records
Reports - full transparency in QuickBooks, and Fund Reports & Status given as often as Church desires
100% of Donations Allocated to Fund - no admin costs deducted
“ Win-Win-Win” situation – Church is actively seen as engaged in adoption ministry; financial roadblock is removed for family; orphan child is adopted; with little/no admin burden for church
Synergy - We can do more together than sometimes can be done on our own
Iriving Bible Church (tapestry.irvingbible.org) http://vimeo.com/4140197
Register for Church Fund Webinar – November 18th!
Real life example – Scott & Jennifer
Adopting 1 yr old, cleft lip, India (already had 2 children in family)
Adoption Cost: $31,350
$3,300 - from savings
$10,000 – withdrew from retirement fund
$2,500 – adoption Matching Grant (from Lifesong)
$12,906 - donated, result of Matching Grant
$3,000 – adoption grant from Katlyn’s Fund
$2,000 – unexpected property tax refund
$300 - garage sale proceeds that friend held
Real life example – Tim & Susan
Adopted 2 yr old, China (already had 5 children in family)
Adoption Cost: $25,050
$2,000 gift from their church
$2,000 sold personal items
$3,000 Matching Grant (given by Lifesong)
$9,716 donated, result of matching grant
$1,000 result of giver after reading newsarticle
$2,000 (2) anonymous givers $1,000 each
$3,500 sister donated FF miles to pay for flights/airfare
Other Grant Organizations…
www.lifesongfororphans.org (matching grants, direct grants)
www.carolinespromise4u.org (North Carolina only)
www.ggam.org (matching grants)
www.micahfund.org (Midwest only – black & bi-racial adoptions)