Sunday, December 30, 2007
Thursday, December 27, 2007
Here are some other wonderful photos from this joy filled party. The children had so much fun getting dressed in festive clothes,
Playing lots of games, including the classic "three legged race",
and singing songs and doing dances.
All of us at LWB would like to thank the sponsors that make our education programs possible. What happiness you have already brought to the kids and how wonderful to know that 2008 is going to be an even brighter year! New Year's wishes to all!
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
The main issue is that we are not able to fundraise for the most critically ill babies, as they have to go immediately to the hospital. As most of you know, we normally put the children on our website who need surgery, and over a few weeks they are usually sponsored and then moved for their operations. But the urgent kids have to be moved without funding in place, which is why the general funds are so essential. With those funds currently exhausted….we had to say “no more urgent kids” for awhile.
Christmas morning, however, I woke up to the news of several newly abandoned babies who were in critical condition. I had told the LWB volunteers that our foundation would be closed for a few days over Christmas, to spend time with our families, but the sad reality is that babies become orphaned every single day, and there is no “holiday schedule” when a child is urgently ill. Of course our offices never really close.
And so on the day that is normally one of great joy, we were notified of two tiny little babies who would not survive without immediate care. One little boy was left in Anhui province, with an enormous tumor on his back which appears to have split open. The other tiny baby was left in Henan, again with a spinal tumor which was broken open and bleeding.
Both babies look so completely tiny and vulnerable in their photos. Both babies would not survive without immediate medical intervention. And it was Christmas Day… and we were being asked to give our answer on whether we could help save their lives.
So what do you say on Christmas Day when your ER is closed and yet two beautiful newborn boys are in need of someone to step forward and say, “yes we want you to have a second chance at life”?
Well….what would YOU say? My guess is that our answers are the same. And my prayer is that both boys will get the miracle they deserve.
There is a contest on Facebook right now, supported by the Case Foundation. Every day, the charity that gets the most unique donors wins $1000, and on February 1st, the charity that has the most unique donations wins FIFTY THOUSAND DOLLARS. Yes, $50,000. Right now, the charity in the lead has "just" 268 people who donated to them.
To register a donation, someone only has to give $10. Would it be possible for us to find more than 268 people on Facebook who want to help orphaned children in China? Wouldn't it be so wonderful to know we had $50,000 extra to help children with urgent needs?
If you are on Facebook or know people who are, please let them know that LWB is now registered as of today. Yes, we are behind in the polls, but we can turn that around, right? The power of the adoption world is an amazing one! You have to donate through Facebook...that is the one catch, but I am hoping there is a way to let people in the adoptive world who are part of Facebook know they can help change a life by giving $10.
As you will see from my next blog about some very critical babies....we could use those funds to save some very precious lives.
Here is the facebook link:
I was forwarded this link today about special needs adoption. The couple featured in the story are friends of ours, and they are such a great family. I loved this video because the dad is honest about his original feelings about the waiting child path of adoption but then talks about how his little boy is absolutely and completely his SON.
Dr. Buckmiller, who has done three LWB cleft missions, was the physician who did the little boy's surgeries. I think this is a very nice video to promote SN adoptions.
Monday, December 24, 2007
To everyone who has given of themselves this year to help a child in need.....please know that you are a BLESSING to this world. Your care and concern is helping to change lives.
Today in my inbox I received so many Christmas wishes from China. Greetings from orphanage staff, cards from volunteers there working with the children, and even the dearest emails from some of the older orphaned children who have received surgery or educational help from our foundation. They sent their wishes for a joyful holiday, and I would like to pass on their thoughts to you, as none of what we do is possible without your help. You are truly changing lives.
So in their words... "May the love and the joy of this special season fill your heart and your home with love."
Friday, December 21, 2007
Our beds at Shanghai Children's Medical Center have been very busy and filled lately. We thought you would enjoy seeing some of the beautiful children who are having their surgeries this month. Thanks to everyone who supports our medical program and allows these children to have the "gift of healing."
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
"Xuan: A few days ago, the nanny was giving cookies and fruits as snacks for the babies. Nanny told the kids to say, 'Ayi' ('auntie' in Chinese) before they get the food. Suddenly nanny heard a strange voice and it was Xuan who had a little rubber duck under her foot. Xuan stepped her foot on the duck and made a loud voice to get the attention of the nanny. Of course she succeeded. She got the snack first." Can't you just see her doing that?
"Xing: Xing loves to help the nanny to do something. Once the nanny was preparing the formula for the babies. She first prepared the clean bottles in a basket. Then she goes to get the formula. But she could not find the bottles when she came back with the formula. She went around to look for the bottles then she realized that it must be Xing who took the bottles away. She was right. Xing took the basket to the room of the babies and was trying to put the bottles on the table. She wanted to help the nanny. She is such is sweet little girl." Auntie's little helper, isn't that cute?
Jan Champoux Love Without Boundaries Foundation
"Every Child Counts!"
Monday, December 17, 2007
I so want to give my own children a feeling of JOY this season. But I find my head has two thoughts running at the exact same time every moment of the day.
Mrs. Eldridge, can you send treats for the holiday party? ***** She has severe heart disease and might have lung damage.
Mom, can we go see Narnia? ***** Do you have the funds to help us? She is so sick and we feel she needs to be in the hospital.
Friday, December 14, 2007
Thanks to everyone who is helping to support their medical care. They are still on our website for donations.
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Thank you education sponsors for keeping these children comfortable so they can experience the gift of learning. You make it possible!
Believe in Me III Coordinator
Love Without Boundaries
“Every Child Counts”
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Yi was born in May with both an ASD and VSD heart defects. We first heard about her in July. Her orphanage director told us that she often had difficulty breathing and was on oxygen. We made arrangements to move her right away to Hangzhou and in August she received her surgery.
A month after she was discharged, her orphanage contacted us again to let us know that she was getting fevers often and wasn’t eating well. They asked us if there was any way we could help. This orphanage director just loves her kids and always tries to get them the care they need. At this time that she contacted us, we had an opening at Heartbridge and moved her right away.
She arrived in good condition, but with a small infection on her surgical scar. Dr. Joyce Hill contacted us because she had to change the dressings on this infection often. She started her on antibiotics as she was running a fever. After four days of running a fever and with the infection growing, we had her admitted her to Beijing United Hospital. At the hospital, they discovered that not only did she have an infection, but she had MRSA. At the same time that this baby was diagnosed with MRSA, the national news here at home started talking about this deadly staph infection almost daily. It is everywhere and can affect anyone, especially those who are weak. No one is immune from this particularly dangerous strain of this bacteria. Because this child had just had heart surgery, she was at higher risk.
From the middle of Sept until now, this tiny baby has been hospitalized. There were many times that we thought that this baby just wouldn’t make it, but she proved us wrong again and again. Miraculously, this child has survived and will hopefully soon be discharged from the hospital. Just a week ago she was supposed to be discharged when a virus went through the hospital and she caught this. She had to go back into the ICU. We have now heard that she is doing well again and will hopefully be discharged within the week and will go back to Heartbridge for continued care.
Because we never want to give up on a child due to funding, we have continued to pay for this child’s hospital bills. She has been in ICU since September and currently her bills have exceeded $30,000 and she has not been discharged yet. I believe that she has been put into our path to care and nurture. Who knows what this child will become as she grows….all I know is that she has a very determined and fighting personality. I am sure that this will take her very far in life.
If you would like to help us with any of Yi’s medical bills, she is still on our website for donations. Any tiny bit will help us meet her bills. What a survivor she is.
Monday, December 10, 2007
Every student in the Mama’s Wish program received a Chinese-English dictionary, and one of the girls who spearheaded the fundraiser was there to personally hand out each book to the students. With funds still remaining, a laptop computer was purchased for the college students in Chengdu to share. The computer was recently delivered to the students, who wrote this letter of appreciation:
“We are very appreciate what you have done for us. We never dare to ask for a computer for ourselves to use although we were dreaming to have one.” You know we are living in a computer society and it is so useful and convenient for us to work and to study. We are a little shy to tell you that we want to buy a computer. We know you can never satisfy everything that you want to have in this world. But you purchased a computer for us and fulfilled our dream! We are so happy and moved! We signed a contract among us: We use the computer in turns. So you not only satisfied our need for material but also satisfied our need for spirit. We are really lucky to meet you! You are blessed and we are blessed as well! We are really appreciate what you have done for us! It is hard to say thank you in one sentence to express our thanks! Thank you! Thank you again! Wish you are happy!”
Even after buying all of the dictionaries and the computer, there is still a little money left over from the fundraiser. More books will be purchased with the remaining funds, and donated to the libraries of the minority schools. This time we will be buying children’s literature, and we can’t wait for the young students to have more books to read.
A huge Thank You goes out to Darian, Jamie, and Lily for all of their hard work; to their school principal for allowing them booth space at the school’s summer jam; and to the Weaver Elementary School parents for supporting the fundraiser so generously. You are helping children to read books, learn a new language, and get through college more easily with your donations!
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
I received a lovely note from a sponsor recently thanking us for our work, comparing it to "teaching someone to fish" rather than giving someone a fish. I was reminded of the ripple effect that education can have on future generations, villages, and communities. This is why I have chosen to devote my time to promoting education for children who will remain in China throughout their lives. We currently have several college students in the Mama's Wish Minority Schools program who are studying to become teachers, with the express intent of returning to their villages and educating the youth of tomorrow. Additionally, several of our college students are in medical school studying to become doctors.
One student in particular that comes to mind is Limao, whose mother died when she was a young girl. Limao later learned that the disease which killed her mother could have been treated if they had only had access to a doctor in her remote village. Knowing that her mother’s life could have been saved, Limao's singular purpose in life has been to somehow attend medical school and then return to her village to open a women's clinic. Her goal has not wavered in all of these years, and she is one of the most determined young women I have ever met. When I visited with her during this last trip, she told me that she and a group of her friends from college spent the summer traveling from village to village, performing traditional Tibetan dancing. After the performances, they taught dancing to young women and then after each dance lesson, they discussed women's health and reproduction with the women in the villages. Limao and her friends from medical school are not even out of college yet, but they are already making a difference in the lives of others – both in their own village and in their greater community. Isn't that wonderful? As you can see, the ripple effect has already started, just two short years after this program was first brought to our attention.
THANK YOU to all of our education supporters. You aren’t just changing the life of one student. By “teaching to fish,” you are improving the quality of life for generations to come.
Monday, December 03, 2007
Rose stared out at me from that first report sitting on her Foster Mom’s knee her head tilted to the right in what I now know as “her” stance in most all photos received over these last 2 years.
As I scanned over the report I wondered about her foster parents, trying to “get to know them” through that one photo. Trying to place this child and her parents in my mind. One of many children in Loudi foster care at that time.
I remembered on a visit I had made a month earlier that I had met a little girl with special needs matching hers ...I scanned my photos to see, match and understand. Little Rosa did stand out more than others because she came with some very special needs listed.
Time moved on and I went on several more visits to the program. Little Rosa became one of the constants in those visits as I wrestled to recognize the other newer children. Every time I received her report I would be overjoyed with her constant progress. Sitting on my sitting-room sofa I’d shout her updates out to my husband working in the other room, and would say yet again that I wanted her to have the chance of adoption ...but her Special need would probably make that impossible. Every time I finished my hollering to my husband I sent a wish for her to get the chance.
Then it happened!!
I visited Little Rosa last March and said my goodbyes. I gave her a Princess dress that my Loudi daughter Lian had worn.
Well in Sept I received word from her Mom then in China ...now the proud adoptive Mom to our little Rosa. Can any of you imagine my emotions when I read, “We got quite a bit of information and the foster family sent a photo album with a number of pictures (including the one of her in the princess dress you told me about). The ladies told us that she wanted to wear her princess dress all the time which I was happy to hear since everyone knows I wanted a girly girl. This morning when she and her brother woke up at 6 a.m. and it was still dark I peeked over the side of my bed and saw them holding hands. Then he gave Rosa’s hand a kiss and she gave his hand a kiss back. It was just so sweet” .
I end my story with Rosa’s new life emerging. The center of attention at this year's Thanksgiving dinner as she is the only girl in her home of doting uncles and brother. She had amazing Foster Parents who have loved her and taught her well. She had people in her orphanage who gave her the chance first of a foster family to call her own, and the gift of the very BEST family in the world.....her forever one.
...Sometimes those wishes do come true.
Julie Flynn Coleman
LWB Foster Care
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Last year on Thanksgiving Day, one of our directors in China was able to visit the Baoji orphanage in Shaanxi Province, which was requesting help with their formula purchases. We were able to start a nutrition program there, and have enjoyed a wonderful relationship with the director and aunties since that time. I was so pleased this week to receive our latest quarterly update...a HUGE batch of new photographs for their one-year anniversary, plus a description of each and every child, compliments of the aunties. It is so nice to hear a little bit about the personalities of the children, this absolutely made my day! The staff there was so kind to take the time to do this! Here are a few of the comments:
"T is a naughty boy but he is so happy and always makes other people laugh."
"C is a smart boy and he likes to explore everything he can find."
"Y loves to read picture books and he is very good at imitation. He brings so much fun for everyone."
"Q is a happy girl. She is a very good eater. She is healthy and strong now."
"N is a strong-willed, bossy girl. She always grabs the toys from the hands of other kids."
"Y is a smart little girl with pretty eyes. All the people like her!"
"K loves to be cuddled and he likes colorful toys. He always smiles!"
Happy Anniversary to the Baoji Babies!
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
One of these sponsors, after choosing to sponsor him, asked me if there was anything else that could be done to help him. Sadly, I had learned that he was on three adoption agency lists and had never been chosen by a family. This means that he will most likely remain in China for the rest of his life. In order for him to have a real chance at a productive future, he will need to go to a School for the Blind to get educated in a skill. I started looking into this, and we have now found a school for the blind, but it is about 6 hours from where he lives. Last week he traveled there with an orphanage worker and his foster mother. Our facilitator in China sent us pictures of his visit there. It has been decided that he is too young and dependent at this time, but they plan to send someone next month to visit him in his town to help teach his foster parents how to prepare him for future registration in the school.
I am so grateful for the sponsor who motivated me to look into this for Erik. It will make a huge difference in his life. Not only did this sponsor motivate me to look into this, but they are planning to cover his tuition when he does go to school. We are so grateful for all the sponsors who are helping to provide this wonderful blessing of family to these children. It makes all the difference in the world!
Sunday, November 25, 2007
The trip began with lunch at KFC. I am so proud to know that these students displayed such good manners and behavior during their meal while still having such fun.
Next the class headed to the park to see the beautiful flowers. I have been told that everyone was so impressed with the knowledge that these young children had. They remembered what they learned this summer and applied this knowledge to the chrysanthemums.
There was also a playground at this park for some extra fun.
Soon it was time to go home. With everyone in accounted for and in line, this class headed home. We are grateful that our teachers in China who were willing to extend the learning to outside the classroom.