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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enab...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enab...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enab...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enab...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enab...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enab...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enab...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enab...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will ena...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will ena...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will ena...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will ena...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will ena...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will ena...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will ena...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will ena...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will ena...
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Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will ena...
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Treasured-ADOPT

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Transcript of "Treasured-ADOPT"

  1. 1. Page | 1 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Hello! Thank you for your interest in Treasured. Treasured is a ministry of Gateway Church with the following purpose:  We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3. The name TREASURED came from the idea of redeeming children, who were previously unknown and unseen by us, and who at times have not been show great value, to be TREASURES. For those who have gone through the foster care or adoption experience, Isaiah 45:2-3 came alive when we saw that God ―…will go before you and will level the mountains; I will break down gates of bronze and cut through bars of iron…‖ to give us ―…TREASURES of darkness, riches stored in secret places…‖ and bring them to a safe home, which has greatly strengthened our faith and helped us ―…know that I am the LORD, the God of Israel, who summons you by name.‖ By taking a stand for the orphans and children in need, we draw closer to God‘s heart, who adopted us into His family. We see this in Psalm 82:3 when God calls us to ―Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless; maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed‖ and also in James 1:27 where we read that ―Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress.‖ By picking up this packet, you have expressed some interest in adoption, foster care and/or child sponsorship. We are so excited for you! Whether you are just beginning to consider this or have already begun the journey, we hope this is a helpful resource for you. The most valuable resource is often another person who has been (or is) on the same journey. There are many adoptive and foster families here at Gateway available to connect with you to answer questions and be a support to you. Please let us know how we can best serve you. ~ The TREASURED Team ~
  2. 2. Page | 2 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Table of Contents GATEWAY ADOPTION MENTOR FAMILIES..................................................................................................3 GATEWAY FAMILY ADOPTION STORIES.....................................................................................................4 FACTS AND FIGURES ......................................................................................................................................7 ADOPTION MYTHS VS. REALITIES................................................................................................................8 QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER AS YOU EXPLORE ADOPTION...................................................................10 ADOPTION FINANCES....................................................................................................................................11 SUGGESTED QUESTIONS FOR ADOPTION AGENCY SELECTION PROCESS ...................................14 DOMESTIC AND INTERNATIONAL ADOPTION AGENCIES .....................................................................17 RESOURCE LIST..............................................................................................................................................18
  3. 3. Page | 3 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Gateway Adoption Mentor Families While adoption is an amazing experience, it can be overwhelming at times. If God is calling you to adopt, get connected to other adoptive families! Below is a list of Gateway families who have adopted. You will find their names and contact information because these families WANT to talk to you. These families have committed to mentoring others who are interested in adopting. They want to pray for you, have dinner, answer questions, share resources and encourage you! Please don‘t hesitate to reach out to one of these families directly or to email us at treasured@gwcbs.com and we can help you get in touch with them as well. Name Type of adoption Email Phone Armstrong, Jimmy and Emily International Guatemala emilykarmstrong@hotmail.com 816-916-7626 Bardwell, Joe and Melissa Domestic Foster care joemel814@comcast.net 816-220-8458 Crandall, Corey and Miriam Domestic Private/Open coreyandmiriam@gmail.com 816-427-1492 Massey, Greg and Ally International China masseys4jc@comcast.net 816-224-5586 Thurn, Larry and Lacy International Peru 2LT2DT1420@sbcglobal.net 816-847-6410 Whitworth, Pat and Lee Anne International Guatemala l.whitworth@live.com 816-795-9976
  4. 4. Page | 4 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Gateway Family Adoption Stories Jimmy and Emily Armstrong, International Adoption, Guatemala emilykarmstrong@hotmail.com – jarmstrong@cerner.com - 816-916-7626 My name is Emily Armstrong and Jimmy and I adopted our precious son from Guatemala. I have always wanted to adopt, but after working with orphans in Peru in 2008, God grabbed my heart and said ―Now.‖ After much prayer and discernment with Jimmy, we began the process. I was excited and, at the same time, unsure of what to expect. We had so many questions like ―Will it be awkward that our adopted child won‘t look like us? Will it be hard to bond with this child? How will we afford it? How do you know which agency to use? How will our family and friends respond?‖ I had no idea the faith journey that God had in store for us. We saw God do ―immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine‖ (Ephesians 3:20) in many ways such as financial blessing, an incredible support group, an amazing bond with our son and other miracles explained only as the working of our Mighty God! The adoption process forced us to depend more fully on God and built our faith in a way we had not previously experienced. The more we learn about the plight of orphans both in our local community and internationally, the more our hearts continue to break for the millions of children who do not have a permanent home. We know that orphans are close to God‘s heart and, by getting involved in the orphan crisis, we have been incredibly blessed. We would love the opportunity to visit with anyone interested in getting involved, so don‘t hesitate to contact us! Corey and Miriam Crandall, Domestic Adoption, Private/Open coreycrandall@gmail.com - miriamgcrandall@gmail.com - 816-427-1492 Miriam‘s heart for adoption started at a young age as she watched her father help build families through adoption as the director of an adoption agency. Corey knew little of adoption before meeting Miriam but that rapidly changed. Shortly after we married, we spent 5 months living in an orphanage in Romania. While there, Miriam recalls asking a fifteen year old girl what her biggest dream was. She replied that she hoped to be adopted. At 15, her heart‘s desire was still to be adopted...to have a mom and dad. Corey recalls a specific moment when a six year old girl was injured on the soccer field. As Corey carried her inside, she was stiff as a board. She did not know how to be held, how to be comforted...it was heart breaking. Working day after day with orphans opened our eyes and our hearts to the immense need for adoption. We knew the Lord was leading us that direction and decided to pursue domestic adoption in August, 2008. At the time we had two biological children. We used an agency, Love Basket, to facilitate our adoption. After one year of paperwork, waiting, losing a job, and praying, we travelled to Rolla, Missouri in August, 2009 to welcome our newborn son, Isaiah Matthew into our family. It was such a beautiful and amazing time for us. The adoption is open, so we have regular contact with the birth mom and we were very happy with the agency we used. Adoption has opened our eyes more clearly to what love really is: a choice. We feel such deep and amazing love for Isaiah and are daily reminded of the Father‘s love for us, as we are His dearly beloved adopted children. We would enjoy the opportunity to meet with you, answer your questions, offer encouragement and serve you wherever you are in the adoption process...from just thinking about it to post placement.
  5. 5. Page | 5 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Pat and Lee Anne Whitworth, International Adoption, Guatemala pgwlaw@hotmail.com - l.whitworth@live.com - 816-795-9976 After not having a biological child, and still wanting a family, we decided to adopt. We were open to adopting domestically or internationally, but felt God clearly opened doors for us to adopt from Guatemala. During the process, we saw a picture of a precious boy named Erick on the internet and hoped he could be our son. Adoption has changed our life by not only giving us an incredible son (much sweeter than we could have produced!), but also opening our eyes to adoption needs in our own country and around the world. It has made us want to be advocates for the millions of other children who need homes. Through adoption we have learned that God calls us to take care of the widows and orphans. We have learned that the process can be tiring and difficult, but can bring such incredible joy in the end. For us, the biggest challenge of our adoption was waiting through the process itself, mainly due to the political structure in Guatemala at the time. We had confidence God orchestrated this union of our family and trusted his timing. We relied heavily on friends and family for support. As far as parenting, I don't feel the challenges have been directly related to him being adopted as much as normal "toddler issues." :) I realize there may be challenging discussions and emotions as he gets older and we try to prepare by talking to other adoptive families and reading books on related topics. Joe and Melissa Bardwell, Domestic Adoption, Foster Care joemel814@comcast.net – 816-220-8458 Hi, we are Joe and Melissa Bardwell and we have adopted three kids from the Children‘s Division. I knew I wanted to adopt children from a young age. When I was in the third grade I watched the movie Annie. After the movie I told my dad that one day I wanted to adopt kids who needed a home. From that day on it became a part of my identity. The idea of taking care of kids who needed a home and to be loved became a major part of who I am. In fact when my husband and I went on our first date I asked him how he felt about adoption. We talked about James 1:27 and about our passion for all of the kids who need a home and someone to love them. After we had been married for a few years we both felt the draw towards becoming a foster parent. It was in the time we spent as a foster parent that God brought our three amazing children into our lives. It was not the way I pictured adopting kids when I was in third grade, it has been even better and I have been blessed beyond what I could have ever imagined. I am sure that every person who becomes a parent experiences a new perspective on the way they approach life. For us adopting our kids has given us a clearer picture of God‘s love for us. When you adopt a child from the Children‘s division there is always some part of their life that you missed. This is similar to each of us before we are in relationship with God. We are separated from him, but he still loves us no matter what happened before we came to him. We get an insight into the character of God when we experience the way we love our children despite what has happened in their lives prior to living with us. No matter what they do or have done that love will not change. That is how God feels about us. It is an amazing chance to experience a small part of God‘s character. Adoption from the Children‘s Division presents many blessings and a few challenges. One of the major challenges is how long you wait to find out if you will get to adopt the kids that are in your home that you
  6. 6. Page | 6 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com have fallen in love with. When we me our oldest son he was legally free for adoption so the adoption process only took us three months. This is an almost unheard of time frame for adoption from the state. The younger two kids took a little while longer. They were placed in our home as infants and we waited a year before we found out that we would get to adopt them. In that time there were many ups and downs. There were times that it appeared that we may not get to adopt the child we had loved like our own child. In those times the only thing we had to hold on to was that God was in control and he knew what would happen. Those years were trying time for us. They were also defining times in our lives. As we look back on them now it is easy to see that God had his hand on the situation the entire time. The pain and fear were not fun, but they helped shape our hearts and our character. We are thankful that we had some good friends and family that supported us during that time. Larry and Laci Thurn, International Adoption, Peru 2lt2dt1420@sbcglobal.net – 816-847-6410 God started our adoption story when Larry first went to Peru on a mission trip. The orphans, the conditions they lived in and their sweet hearts weighed heavy on Larry's heart and he felt like we were supposed to do something drastic. I could plainly see that God had done something huge with Larry as he started to reveal to me what he had been shown while in Peru. God showed us the story of Esther that summer. In particular Esther 4:14, that says, "who knows if you weren't put in this position, for just such a time as this", which said to us that God wanted to use us right here in this time frame..right now....to make a difference. Even if it was only ONE child. Since that initial period, details of our "adoption story" continued to fall into place. We saw these pieces lining up as more confirmation that we were doing as we had been asked. Of course no one could prepare you as to the mountains of paperwork and red tape you have to walk through, time and time again. But, all along we keep our eyes focused on the LIGHT at the end of this tunnel, knowing that God will finish what HE has started and one day (hopefully soon) we will be joined with the daughter/sister He has chosen for us. Greg and Ally Massey, International Adoption, China Masseys4jc@comcast.net - 816-224-5586 I was running on my treadmill telling the Lord I wanted to live a life completely and totally for the Lord's glory and this thought ran through my head, "Adopt a baby". This was not a normal thought for me. Greg and I hadn't discussed it prior, but I knew it was from the Lord. I called Greg at work and told him what the Lord had just said to me. He said, "I think so too". He then told me that a few months earlier he had been on a mission trip to Mexico and saw children who didn't have families who loved and valued them and it wrecked him. Greg then proceeded to tell me that God had begun talking to him about adopting a child since that trip. He just hadn't said anything to me. God confirmed the whisper I heard on the treadmill with Greg's answers. And the long adoption process began. Adoption has wrecked us with the love the Father has towards us as his children. God invited us into a powerful story of adoption. We loved Myer from the absolute beginning and longed for her to know she belonged with an unconditional love to our family. By no accident God reminded us we too are invited to be His adopted children and He longs for us to belong to Him and know we are loved with an unconditional love.
  7. 7. Page | 7 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Facts and Figures What is the need?  Over 130 million children have lost one or both parents.  Every 18 seconds another child becomes an orphan, without a mother or father.  At least 16.2 million children worldwide have lost both parents.  Every 14 seconds a child loses a parent due to AIDS.  Conflict has orphaned or separated 1 million children from their families in the 1990s. Where are they?  43.4 million orphans live in sub-Saharan Africa, 87.6 million orphans live in Asia, and 12.4 million orphans live in Latin America and the Caribbean.  1.5 million children live in public care in Central and Eastern Europe alone.  In some countries, children are abandoned at alarming rates, due to poverty, restrictive population control policies, disabilities or perceived disabilities, and cultural traditions that value boys more than girls.  At any given point there are over 500,000 children in the U.S. Foster Care system.  There are 1,755 children in Missouri and 336 children in Jackson County awaiting adoption in the foster care system. There are 8,973 churches in Missouri and 525 in Jackson County….so that means if every church (or specifically 65% of churches) in Jackson Country adopted 1 child waiting to be adopted, there would be no kids waiting. What happens to the children?  Orphaned children are much more likely than non-orphans to be working in commercial agriculture, as street vendors, in domestic service and in the sex trade.  Unaccompanied boys are at high risk of forced or 'voluntary' participation in violence and armed conflict.  Orphanages, children's villages, or other group residential facilities generally fail to meet young people's emotional and psychological needs. (from http://www.showhope.org/Resources/TheNeed.aspx , www.moheartgallery.org and http://www.dss.mo.gov/re/ )
  8. 8. Page | 8 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Adoption Myths vs. Realities According to a recent national study, 81.5+ million people have considered building their family through adoption. Sadly, for the vast majority of these people, the journey ends with the many myths of adoptions they have heard. Because most never get past the myths of adoption, they never experience the miracle of adoption. For most of us, the only information we ever had about adoption has been mostly myth. These myths need to be dispelled. So, we present here some of the myths of adoption-and the true and wonderful realities that counter those myths for those who want to dig deeper and know the truth: Myth Reality There are no babies being placed for adoption in the U.S. 20,000 or more U.S.-based infants are placed for adoption each year. Adoptive parents must wait five years or more for a baby. The average wait in a domestic adoption is less than two years. Adopting parents pay extortionate amounts -- tens and tens of thousands of dollars. Costs of private domestic adoptions average $15,000 and public adoptions from the foster care system have very little cost associated with them. After the Adoption Tax Credit, the cost is comparable to that of giving birth in a hospital. There is a federal adoption tax credit, which is currently up to $13,170 of qualified adoption expenses for international adoptions and is a flat credit for special needs domestic adoptions. Birth-parents can arrive at any time to reclaim their child. Once an adoption is finalized, the adoptive family is recognized as the child's family by law. Birth-mothers are all troubled teens. Most birth-mothers today are older than 18. In most cases, it's lack of support and/or resources that causes them to place their children for adoption. Children in foster care have too much "baggage." Children in state care have most likely experienced some sort of trauma in their lives and for various reasons, often neglect or abuse, have been placed in foster care. However, by educating yourself and preparing for your child's needs before completing the adoption, you will be more prepared to face any challenges that may come up. Children in foster care, just like any children, have enormous potential to thrive when given love, patience and a stable environment. Just ask U.S. Senator Ben "Nighthorse" Campbell, Minnesota Viking Dante Culpepper, Washington, D.C. Mayor Anthony Williams, or Miss USA 2000 Lynnette Cole. They were all once foster children who were adopted by caring adults. All children in foster care have some kind of physical, mental or emotional handicap; that's why they are classified as "special needs." The term "special needs" is somewhat misleading, because it can mean that the child is older, a minority, or requires placement with his/her siblings — in other words, a child who has a "special need" for a family! While some children are dealing with physical or emotional concerns, just like other children, they need the nurturing and support that a permanent family can provide. Many foster children are in the "system" because their birth parents weren't protective and nurturing caretakers, not because the children did anything wrong.
  9. 9. Page | 9 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Adoptive parents must be married and without children. Anyone can adopt, including single people, couples without children, and families who already have children by birth or by prior adoption. However, many foreign countries and some private agencies have specific requirements as to the marital status, age, and number of children, or religion of people who adopt the children. I am not sure I can love an adopted child the way I love a biological child. Many prospective adoptive parents are influenced by this fear/myth. The truth that is testified to over and over again after adopting, is that you can and do love an adopted child just as much as a biological child. Love is not so much a matter of blood- line, as love-line. It is relationship. Myths compiled from aspiranet.org, beliefnet.com, and adoptioninformation.com. (From www.howtoadopt.org )
  10. 10. Page | 10 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Questions to Consider as You Explore Adoption Deciding to adopt is a big decision! It can be difficult to process all of the factors that contribute to making a decision. Below you will find some questions to help you think through your views on adoption. These questions are not designed with a ―right‖ or ―wrong‖ answer in mind. Instead, they are a discussion tool. Please know that there are many Gateway families, with a diverse array of experiences and backgrounds, that would love to listen and talk with you as you consider the life changing adventure of adoption. Feel free to contact us at treasured@gwcbs.com with questions or for more information. 1. What are my biggest fears regarding adoption? 2. Do/will my close family and friends support my decision to adopt? If not, why? 3. How do I define the concept of family? In other words, what is a family? 4. What personal experience(s) do I have regarding adoption – whether positive or negative? 5. Does adoption seem ―normal‖ to me? 6. If married, does my spouse have the same ideas about adoption? 7. What have I done thus far to educate myself about adoption? 8. What, if anything, do I feel that I would lose or be ―giving up‖ if I choose to adopt? 9. Why do/would I want to adopt? 10. How do I feel about birthparents (i.e., the biological parents of children who are adopted)? 11. How do I know if adoption is right for me? 12. How do I feel about loving a child who is not biologically related to me? (from www.tapestry.irvingbible.org )
  11. 11. Page | 11 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Adoption Finances 1. God‘s Perspective Always keep in mind….God is called Jehovah-Jireh, ―the Lord will provide‖. See Genesis 22:14. When God asks you to do something, He will provide. 2. Costs of Adoption (very rough estimate)  Domestic Adopion = $8,000 - $30,000  International Adoption = $20,000 - $40,000+  Foster to Adopt = generally, this is a free process, but legal and other possible fees can be incurred. 3. Financial Options  Federal Adoption Tax Credit o In 2011, the maximum adoption credit is $13,360 per child. o The credit is refundable, meaning that eligible taxpayers can get it even if they owe no tax for that year. In general, the credit is based on the reasonable and necessary expenses related to a legal adoption, including adoption fees, court costs, attorney‘s fees and travel expenses. Income limits and other special rules apply. o See: http://chrisitianallianceblog.org/?p=864 o See IRS Tax Topic 607: Adoption Credit (www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc607.html )  Missouri Adoption Tax Credit o Up to $10,000 over a five year period. Use form MO-ATC. o This is actually a ―special needs‖ tax credit, but various ethnic backgrounds also apply. o This is not a refundable credit, meaning you can only claim the credit for the year up to your tax liability, and then you carry forward the balance until you are able to claim the full $10,000. You cannot file this prior to July 1st each year and have to file it by April 15th. They then determine how much money they have available after all of the claims are filed for this period and refund the money in June. They go by receipt order so you will want to file it as soon as you can after July 1st to make sure you don't have to wait another year. Dates are different for resident and nonresident children. Call 573-526-8733 for more information o See http://dor.mo.gov/taxcredit/atc.php  Direct Grants o Directly awarded to family or adoption agency for adoption expenses o Given without repayment or fundraising. Based on financial need o Grants range from $1,000-$10,000+ o Examples:  www.showhope.org  www.lydiafund.org  http://katelynsfund.org  http://www.seaoffaces.org/grants.htm  www.katelynsfund.org  http://www.abrotherslove.org  http://64.123.230.204/kinsmanredeemer/index.html  www.adoptionresourcefoundation.com  www.giftofadoption.org  www.helpusadopt.org  www.achildwaits.org  Check out an updated adoption grant chart at www.resources4adoption.com
  12. 12. Page | 12 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com  Matching Grants o Matching Grants of up to $4,000/per child ($1-for-$1 match) o Others donate tax-deductible gifts. Church, family, friends become engaged financially & prayerfully o Average Scenario: Matching Grant of $2,500 - mobilizes an additional $5,000 - average total grant funds for your adoption = $7500 o Examples:  www.lifesongfororphans.org  http://ggam.org  www.handinhandadopt.org  Interest-Free Loan o Reduces initial, upfront ‗cash-flow crunch‘. o Couples sign a covenant agreement to repay - monthly or annually and can use Adoption Tax Credit to repay loan. o Examples:  www.lifesongfororphans.org  www.abbafund.org  www.achildwaits.org  Other ideas o Employer Adoption Assistance  A number of companies have adoption assistance programs built into their benefits with some providing between $2,000 - $10,000 o The military provides $2,000  http://military.adoption.com/army/military-adoption-benefits.html o Sell t-shirts  http://www.showhope.org/AdoptionAid/ShirtsOfHope.aspx  http://www.adoptionbug.com/fundraiser.htm  http://www.147millionorphans.com/Adoption-Fundraising_ep_41.html  http://www.annifororphans.com/ or http://www.facebook.com/AnNiDesigns o Sell coffee  https://www.justlovecoffee.com/RegisterFamily.aspx o Garage sale o Walk-a-thon o Holiday Homes Tour o http://abbafund.wordpress.com/2008/02/25/fundraising-ideas/ o Great overall website covering all adoption financial options:  http://www.resources4adoption.com/  ―Both Hands‖ Adoption Funding o http://bothhandsfoundation.org/ o Innovative tool to remove financial barrier o A team fixes up a widow‘s home. Renovation provided for free to widow (donated labor & construction materials). Sponsorship donations help fund adoption expenses. See James 1:27 o 100% of donated sponsorships are used for adoption expenses. Disbursed as Adoption Grant
  13. 13. Page | 13 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com  Real life examples  Adopting 1 yr old, cleft lip, India (already had 2 children in family) o Adoption Cost: $31,350  $3,300 - from savings  $10,000 – adoption loan  $2,500 – adoption matching grant  $12,906 - donated, result of matching grant  $3,000 – direct grant from organization  $2,000 – unexpected property tax refund  $300 - garage sale proceeds that friend held  Adopted 2 yr old, China (already had 5 children in family) o Adoption Cost: $25,050  $2,000 gift from their church  $2,000 savings  $2,000 sold personal items  $3,000 matching grant  $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
  14. 14. Page | 14 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Suggested Questions for Adoption Agency Selection Process Use of a licensed adoption agency is generally required when pursuing an international adoption. The specifics of an agency‘s adoption program vary considerably by country. The following is a list of suggested questions that are designed to help families in selecting an adoption agency for an adoption. Families should also ask additional questions relating to specific country programs. However, a very important consideration in selecting an agency is determining whether the agency is a ―good fit,‖ and this can generally be achieved by ensuring that the family has accurate information and realistic expectations about the agency, its services and costs and its adoption process (in particular estimated wait times). In addition to obtaining answers to the following questions, adoptive families are strongly encouraged to read carefully any contracts or policies that they are asked to sign or agree to by the agency and to ask questions (including consulting an attorney, if necessary). General Questions about the Agency:  What are the agency‘s requirements for adoptive families (e.g., age, marital status (including previous divorce(s)), number of children already in the home, religious, criminal background, financial, health considerations)? Note: Requirements will vary by country.  How long has the agency been in operation?  In what countries does the agency have adoption programs? How long has the agency had an active adoption program in the country of interest?  Has the agency‘s program in the country of interest ever been suspended or terminated (as a result of loss of accreditation or otherwise)? If so, why and for how long?  What is the current adoption climate in the country of interest? How stable has the country program been in recent months/years?  Does the agency have any religious or denominational affiliation?  How long has the agency‘s director been working in the adoption field? How long has he/she been the director of the agency?  How long has the director for the country of interest (i.e., the country program director) been working with adoptions from the country of interest?  What is the education and licensing background of the agency‘s director and professional staff?  Will the agency provide contact with families who have recently used the agency to adopt from the country of interest (i.e., family references)?  Are families allowed to specify the gender of the child they wish to adopt? Note: The ability to specify gender will vary by country.  How are waiting children cared for in the country of interest (i.e., orphanages/institutions, foster homes, etc.)? How is the funding for such care provided?  Does the agency have any affiliations with orphanages, social service agencies, facilitators or others in the country of interest that will be significantly involved in the adoption process? If so, obtain details regarding such arrangements (including the length of such relationships).
  15. 15. Page | 15 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Questions about Fees and Costs:  What fees and costs are charged by the agency in connection with the adoption process and when are they due?  What costs and expenses will likely be incurred in addition to the agency‘s fees and costs (i.e., home study expenses, legal expenses, filing and processing expenses, etc.)? Note: It is advisable that you request a total estimate for all fees, costs and expenses that can be expected in connection with the adoption process – not just the agency‘s fees and costs. Questions about Wait Time: Note: All questions regarding wait times should be asked in relation to a specific country program.  What is the current estimated wait time for families? How many families are currently waiting? Note: Wait times at most agencies are often highly dependent on the adoptive family‘s parameters (e.g., age, gender, race of child, and health factors that the adoptive family is willing to consider). To the extent that an adoptive family has already determined certain of its fundamental parameters, questions regarding wait times should be asked in specific relation to those parameters (e.g., what is the estimated wait time for an infant girl?).  Have average wait times for families increased, decreased or remained generally the same over the past several years (and if they have increased or decreased, why)?  How often should I expect to hear from the agency workers during the waiting process? Questions about the Agency’s Previous Placement Experience:  How many children has the agency placed in each of the past five years from the country of interest?  What number of failed adoption placements has the agency experienced in each of the past five years (i.e., how many instances of a family being matched with a child but such match did not result in a final adoption)? Note: Although generally uncommon even in the context of domestic adoptions, ―failed placements‖ are even more uncommon in the context of international adoption and the risk of a failed international placement will vary greatly by country. Questions about the Agency’s Matching and Finalization Process:  What children are available in the country of interest (i.e., children of what age, gender, sibling groups, etc.)?  How does the agency‘s matching process work for the country of interest? If interested in domestic, how does a birth mom choose the adoptive family? Are all domestic adoptions open adoptions, or are some of them semi-open or closed? What /who decides the openness of an adoption?  What background information (e.g., medical, social, family history, etc.) is generally available regarding the child and/or the child‘s biological family?  If adopting an infant, how involved is the adoptive family with the birthparent(s) prior to the baby being born?  If adopting a newborn, when is the baby generally placed with the adoptive family?  In International adoption, does the agency provide pictures and/or video of the referred child?  Once matched, does the agency provide the adoptive family with pictures and/or videos of the child? Does the agency provide updates regarding the child‘s growth, medical condition and/or development?
  16. 16. Page | 16 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com  What are the travel requirements for the country of interest (i.e., are families required to travel in order to bring their child home or is an escort service available as an option)? Are both parents (if applicable) required to travel? How long must they stay in country? Questions about Services Provided by the Agency:  What pre-placement training does the agency offer to adoptive families? What other support services does the agency provide (e.g., support groups, social events, newsletters, etc.)?  What post-placement services for adoptive families are provided? What help or services are available for adoptive families experiencing post-placement challenges and difficulties relating to their adoption – specifically relating to parenting children of a different racial, ethnic and/or cultural background?  What humanitarian aid/support does the agency provide to the countries in which it operates?  What counseling and support services do the birthparent(s) receive both prior to and after the adoption? Disclaimer: This document is not intended to constitute, nor does it represent, legal advice of any kind. A qualified attorney should be consulted with respect to any legal questions or issues.
  17. 17. Page | 17 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Domestic and International Adoption Agencies Love Basket Countries: Domestic, Haiti, India, Zambia, Embryo Adoption Phone: 636-797-4100 Website: www.lovebasket.org Lighthouse Countries: Domestic Phone: 816-361-2233 Website: www.lighthousekc.org Jackson County Children’s Division Countries: Domestic--adoption from foster care Phone: 816-889-2595 Website: www.kcchildren.org or http://www.dss.mo.gov/pr_cs.htm Bethany Christian Services Countries: Domestic, China, Columbia, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Haiti, Hong Kong, Lithuania, Philippines, Russia, South Korea, Taiwan, Ukraine Phone: 314-781-6363 Website: www.bethany.org Dillon International Countries: China, Ethiopia, Ghana, Haiti, Honduras, Hong Kong, India, Korea, Nepal, Russia Phone: 314-576-4100 Website: www.dillonadopt.com Holt International Countries: Bulgaria, China, Ethiopia, Haiti, India Korea, Nepal, Philippines, Thailand, Uganda, Vietnam Phone: 816-822-2169 Website: www.holtintl.org Children’s Hope International Countries: China, Columbia, Ethiopia, Russia, Vietnam Phone: 888-899-2349 Website: www.childrenshopeint.org Additionally, Focus on the Family has a resource list on their website with some recommended agencies. To find their list, go here: http://www.family.org/sharedassets/correspondence/pdfs/Parenting/Adoption_Referrals.pdf
  18. 18. Page | 18 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Resource List The resources we have provided are just a place to start. We trust that these resources will be helpful to you. We may not necessarily agree with or endorse every idea and opinion contained in them. Please use your judgment and discernment as you read and consider these and any other adoption resources. The best resource we can provide you is contact with one of our mentor families. Please contact us with any questions or concerns at treasured@gwcbs.com or directly contact any of the mentor families. We are glad to serve you. Books Raising Adopted Children by Lois Melina Dear Birthmother, Thank you for our Baby by Kathleen Silber and Phylis Speedlin Adoption is a Family Affair! – What Friends and Family Must Know, Patricia Irwin Johnston Fields of the Fatherless, C. Thomas Davis The Connected Child, Karyn B. Purvis, David R. Cross and Wendy Lyons Sunshine Toddler Adoption: The Weaver’s Craft, Mary Hopkins-Best Twenty Things Adopted Kids Wish Their Adoptive Parents Knew, Sherrie Eldridge Secret Thoughts of An Adoptive Mother, Jana Wolff (Comment: A very honest account by one adoptive mother, but may be off-putting to some readers) Successful Adoption: A Guide for Christian Families by Natalie Nichols Gissespie Tapestry Books (www.tapestrybooks.com) has many adoption-related books for all ages. Internet www.howtoadopt.org - an adoption education site by Show Hope www.showhope.org - foundation established by Steven Curtis Chapman to help children find their way to forever families www.kcchildren.org - Jackson County Children‘s Division www.childwelfare.gov/adoption - US Department of Health and Human Services Administration for Children and Families http://www.davethomasfoundation.org - Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption tapestry.irvingbible.org - an adoption ministry www.adopting.com - general adoption website www.adoption.com - general adoption website www.adoptionsupport.org - The Center for Adoption Support and Education (CASE) www.adoptivefamilies.com - Adoptive Families, a national adoption magazine. www.empoweredtoconnect.org - highlights the underlying biblical principles of The Connected Child and offers new insights for parents. www.pactadopt.org - focus is on adoption of children of color
  19. 19. Page | 19 Purpose Statement: We will educate the church regarding foster care, adoption and child sponsorship and will enable the church to meet the needs of these children and foster/adoptive families. Psalm 82:3; Isaiah 45:2-3 E-mail us here: treasured@gwcbs.com Magazines Adoptive Families Magazine (www.adoptivefamilies.com) Adoption Today (www.adoptiontoday.com) Fostering Families Today (www.fosteringfamiliestoday.com)

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