Monday, June 30, 2008

Food for Thought

We thought our nutrition sponsors would be interested in seeing exactly what a gift the children in our nutrition program are getting through high quality formula. Recently we did an evaluation between a local brand of formula and Nestle Nestogen formula, which is what we send to the majority of the orphanages we partner with for nutrition. We would like to send another HUGE thank you to everyone who makes our nutrition program possible, as it truly is giving so many precious babies the absolute best start in life.
Although both formulas were similar in calories, fat, and iron content, we found a significant difference in the micro-nutrients that are so vital to good health and healing. Below is a sample of our findings, with the local formula's content listed first, versus Nestle Nestogen. Amounts listed per 100 grams of formula powder:

Linoleic acid: Omega 6 fatty acids, essential to the diet for growth and healing.
3,000 mg versus 16,000 mg

Protein: Vital for growth and cell repair.
12 grams versus 20.2 grams

Calcium: Needed for growth, healthy teeth and bones, also fights absorption of lead.
310 mg versus 735 mg

Phosphorus: Helps with the synthesis of carbohydrates and protein, formation of bones and teeth, cell repair.
220 mg versus 600 mg

Vitamin B1: Helps convert carbohydrates into energy, also essential to functioning of the heart, muscles, and nervous system.
400 mcg versus 700 mcg

Vitamin B2: Needed for general good health, also helps metabolize carbohydrates and protein.
500 mcg versus 1100 mcg

Niacin: Helps convert food to energy, assists with functioning of digestive system, skin and nerves, an essential to the diet.
3,500 mcg versus 130,000 mcg

Vitamin B6: Helps metabolize protein, helps immune system produce antibodies, aids in production of red blood cells.
190 mcg versus 930 mcg

Pantothenic acid: For metabolism of carbohydrates, protein and fat.
1,700 mcg versus 3,300 mcg

Copper: Helps in production of red blood cells, and keeps blood vessels, nerves, immune system and bones healthy.
300 mcg versus 5,600 mcg

Zinc: Helps with immune system and healing, helps to fight absorption of lead.
2.5 mg versus 5.6 mg

While that's too small amounts to try and remember, hopefully you can see that they all add up to a very big difference for the children. THANK YOU!!!

Jan Champoux
Nutrition Director

Friday, June 27, 2008

Learn by Teaching

Isn’t it true that we learn by teaching? I know that as I teach my children to pick up their things, clear the table, do homework in a timely fashion I am actually learning to do those things myself. Our Believe In Me teacher in Jingzhou, Hubei Province knows that the best learning comes from teaching – especially when it comes to learning Pinyin. Pinyin, as many of you know, is the Romanization of Mandarin. When it comes to learning how to read/write in English and Mandarin, Pinyin is the first alphabet students will learn.

Our Believe In Me students are no different. They are having fun teaching each other English letters and Chinese sounds…and they are some of the cutest little professors we ever did see! I just love these photos. They show how a school, even a little, itty bitty tiny school with one teacher and a whole lotta hope can transform lives.
Thank you to all the sponsors and donors that have made this learning possible for these students. It will be very useful in their futures.

Linda Mitchell

To learn more about LWB students in need of education opportunities please visit:

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

BIM-Huainan Students Perform

Editing down 22 minutes of video to about 2 minutes (click on the title to view the video) took several hours deciding on which singing groups, which scenes of children eating out of candy bags, which images of children enjoying a holiday party should be used. The more I looked and listened attempting to whittle off seconds of a scene, the more minute details of the Believe In Me education program I noticed. What do we all look at when we attend a school performance?

The students’ joy in performing songs learned, some accompanied by dance steps boosts their pride. A satisfied smile, a shy smile and sometimes a relieved smile for the appreciative applause. The back ground scene of students singing and clapping along even when they were not center stage demonstrates the enthusiastic chorus. The mischievous girl who rushed to pick up a tinsel garland that had fallen off one of the performers and started dancing around with it herself, causing fits of giggles among the children. All small details and many more but similar to the warm details we tend to notice in school performances.

The children in the Believe In Me programs are enjoying their special moments as all children should. Most importantly the children in Believe In Me have that special someone in the audience too that has come just to see them. And that is all the sponsors.

Thank you to each and every sponsor who has made these special moments possible.

Karin Cooper
Believe in Me Huainan Assistant Coordinator

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Facebook Babies Update

In February, it was announced on Facebook that LWB won the Facebook challenge. With winning this award, we won $50,000, enough to help heal 10 heart babies. We thought you might like to see the babies and get an update on how they are all doing. Some are healed, some are in the hospital right now waiting for their turn, others are still waiting until just the right time. Everyone one of these children's lives will be changed forever with the money won through this contest.

Thank you to everyone who helped to make this happen!

Ying from Henan is still too tiny for surgery but is scheduled to have her ToF repair done in August. What a peanut! As soon as her heart is repaired, she will then have cleft lip surgery as well.

Yun from Zhejiang received surgery for ToF in February and is doing GREAT. This is a photo from the hospital bed.

Xiang from Guangdong was SO sick, and his aunties from the orphanage really didn't think he would make it. The Facebook funds came just in time and he had surgery in March. He received surgery for ToF and PA and is doing so well that he is being submitted for adoption. He was very blue before and now is a lovely shade of pink!

Ya received surgery for ToF and has been matched with her forever family now. That is what makes us absolutely the happiest.

Yang from Henan will be having ToF surgery next week. We can't wait to see his blue lips turn to pink!

Yun from Anhui received surgery for VSD and pulmonary hypertension and is doing so great!

Yan from Anhui will have surgery for VSD and PA soon. She needs a very specialized surgery so she needs extra prayers.

Yu from Guangxi received successful surgery for PDA.

Lin from Anhui received surgery for both PA and VSD!

And Xiong from Henan received surgery for VSD, PDA, and pulmonary hypertension. Isn't that a GREAT smile?

Karen Maunu
Medical Director

Friday, June 20, 2008

Love Can Make a Miracle

"Love Can Make a Miracle."
These were the words written by our China Foster Care Director in a recent report to LWB. She was talking about the wonderful foster families in Yunnan. Orphanage Assistance was able to help these families this winter by providing quilts and warm clothing for the children. They were so thankful for the assistance because they do not have much—and yet they give to others. These families scraped together what they could to help those affected by the earthquake.

As the Foster Care Manager said, "The picture shows that as long as we get together, we can overcome any difficulties."

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A Family for Fen

Five years ago, I made my first visit to an orphanage and met so many beautiful children that my head was spinning. I wanted to adopt them all. The toddler and preschool children truly stole my heart, and one little girl made me smile again and again as she would repeat every single thing I said in English just perfectly. Fen was three years old at the time, and she would run up and say “hello!” over and over to me. She had been born with a cleft lip and palate, and when she was just a baby she suffered from a severe fever which left her with weakness on one side. But she never let it get her down. Over the years, I watched in joy as Fen performed many dances and songs for me. Her outgoing personality caught the eye of everyone who met her. This is a photo of her when she was three. Isn't she so cute?
Over the years, each time I would go to China I would get to see Fen. She would literally jump into my arms saying, "mama mama!" and her English had expanded to include not only "how are you?" but also "I am fine, thank you!" She was loved by many of the workers at the orphanage and stole the hearts of each family who visited the SWI during their adoption trips.

When Fen was four years old, she was given the chance at adoption, but sadly it ended in disruption when she had a seizure while in Guangzhou. She returned to the orphanage where her seizures have since stopped. Over the last few years, I have often wondered what Fen would be doing today had she been adopted all those years ago. How different her life would have been. Would she be in dance class twirling around or playing soccer as part of a team? Would she have long hair with ribbons and barrettes and lots of friends in school? Would she still love singing and poetry? Four years of wondering about what could have been.

Fen is now eight years old, and we have asked again and again for her to be given a second chance at finding a family, because we know that Fen has so much to offer to this world. We were thrilled to learn a few weeks ago that her file was accepted once more and she is now on the shared agency list. This beautiful girl who loves music and dancing wants a family of her own so deeply. If you know of anyone who is interested in an older child adoption, please let them know that Fen is currently waiting. We are all praying for the wonderful moment when we learn that someone has said, "you will be my daughter." Many families who have met Fen in person would love to adopt her but do not qualify under current rules. Please help us spread the news that Fen needs a family. She has waited so long. Surely it is her turn to be chosen and loved.
Amy Eldridge

Monday, June 16, 2008

Happy Father's Day!

Father’s Day: a day set aside in the U.S. to honor and celebrate fathers with gifts and cook outs. Gifts that can never come close to the significance that fathers play in their children’s lives. Perhaps a new tie, socks, or gifts like my husband often gets - gifts that the children would like to play with their dad. Like a motor boat to race in the pool, or a new Wii game system that quickly becomes the “kids” present. But isn’t that what fatherhood is all about? Sacrificing for the good of your children? Of course it’s not a sacrifice without rewards – the love of a child for their father often cannot be measured or matched.

Today we’d like to honor all the unsung heroes in our foster care program; the fathers who lavish affection and attention on our 300 plus children in foster care. These men are a vital part of our foster care program and play important roles in the lives of our foster children.

I’d like to tell you about two fathers who are very important in the lives of 12 children now in our Anhui Cleft Healing Home. Zhang Ming manages our cleft healing home along with his brother-in-law Paddy. Both of these men have families of their own but spend countless hours at our home. Paddy has a delightful teenage daughter and Zhang Ming has a very handsome little boy. These children spend many hours at the home along with their mothers (one of whom works in the home as well). They are probably there in part to play with the babies and also to see their fathers!

Zhang Ming spends many hours working for the children that LWB serves, not only in our cleft healing home but also throughout Anhui. He keeps our home running smoothly; hiring nannies, arranging for surgeries, ordering formula. He is also the only English speaker in our home so he is the one we communicate with and who translates the wonderful reports our Cleft Healing Home sponsors receive monthly. He is the man behind the camera taking the many great pictures we have of the children’s lives. As we all know, if you are taking the pictures, you usually aren’t in them! So while we don’t have many pictures of him interacting with the babies, I can assure you he is a huge part of their lives.
Zhang Ming

Paddy is our driver and Zhang Ming’s right hand man. He is a soft spoken, quiet man who loves to play with the babies. It’s obvious from the pictures that the babies love him as well! On this Father’s Day, we’d like to thank all of the fathers who dedicate themselves selflessly to children who will not be theirs forever, but who clearly own a part of their hearts!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Have Bobble, will travel

Before my daughter and I went to China in March, my husband asked me to enter a contest a business colleague of his was having. One of my husband’s businesses is a marketing and consulting firm for lawyers. Mind you, it’s not your run of the mill marketing, but somewhat “outside the box”. One of the lawyer’s he works with had a “bobble-head” created in his image. You know, those statues with the head set on a spring that makes the head bob up and down? The lawyer’s name happens to be Bob, so he created Bob the Bobble Head. Well, Bob was running a contest with the prize going to the person who carried Bob the Bobble head the farthest from Virginia. When my husband asked me to pack Bob in our suitcases to take to China, I thought he was crazy!! First, I had very little room to begin with and secondly I think the whole idea of having a statue that looks like your attorney is a little nutty (and frankly part of me was afraid my husband would want to make one in his own image)!

But when it was agreed that the prize money could go to LWB, how could I resist? So we packed up Bob and off we went! I thought you might enjoy some pictures of Bob’s travels.

Bob on the plane
Bob on the Great Wall
Bob "off" the Great Wall!
Bob with our dinner we decided NOT to eat!

Feeding Bob the dinner we DID eat (oatmeal) many nights

Bob with Wren "What, you want him back?"

And Bob with our parting gift from the hotel in Hefei - we have no idea where they came from!

Naturally we won the prize (who else would carry the thing farther than China??)!! I just sent the winning check to LWB for $150; we’re going to use it sponsor one of the babies in the Cleft Healing Home for three months.

You see, there are a lot of creative ways to raise funds for the children! :)

Sandi Glass
Cleft Healing Home Coordinator

Monday, June 09, 2008

Father's Day Cards

Father’s Day is right around the corner and we’ve got a great idea for truly celebrating Dad and all that he means to you! Honor the special Dads in your life by donating to the Tuan Yuan Adoption Assistance Grant Program of LWB. Because one of our fundamental beliefs is that every child deserves a loving family, LWB established the Tuan Yuan Adoption Assistance Grant Program in 2004. Although it’s one of the lesser known programs at LWB, it is a great program that has so far brought 12 children into loving Forever Families of their very own! Additionally, we have two grant recipients who are currently waiting for their adoptive families to travel to bring them home.

The Tuan Yuan Adoption Assistance Grant Program works by providing an adoption assistance grant to a child who needs a little extra help finding his or her Forever Family. Each time our fund reaches $3,000, we review the Waiting Child program and identify a child who is at risk for his or her file to be returned without being chosen for adoption. We offer the Tuan Yuan grant in the hopes of giving a child an extra chance of being chosen by a family. Please visit our website to learn more about the Tuan Yuan Adoption Assistance Program of Love Without Boundaries:

Please help us offer a grant to a child who is waiting for a loving family and truly tell your Dad how important he is to you by purchasing a Father’s Day gift card. Father’s Day is June 15th and we will accept orders through June 10th to ensure on-time delivery. THANK YOU for giving a child a chance to have a loving forever family of his or her very own! Visit our website for ordering information:

Friday, June 06, 2008

Tutoring Program in Kaifeng

The Kaifeng tutoring program has had a rough year, but I am happy to report that we just rolled out a much improved program. Previously, we had a tutor to work with those with special needs who were unable to attend regular schools. We found that the tutor spent a lot of time traveling to work with each student and was only able to visit once a week. This just wasn’t enough to serve the needs of these kids and it was difficult to retain a tutor willing to travel the distances.

We now have 6 students in foster care in the same area so that a tutor can provide lessons 5 days a week for the whole group. We have found a tutor who is excited about the opportunity to serve these special needs students in this new arrangement. The students also seem to be excited about learning in this group setting.

Here are some photos from the first week’s lessons.

I can see the enthusiasm and care in the tutor's face. Just look at how the children are responding and participating!

The tutor is already making plans to develop lessons that better support the special needs of these students.

Nancy Williams
Kaifeng Education Coordinator

Love Without Boundaries’ education, equipping children with the brightest future possible.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Perfect Timing

The following photos are from an orphanage located in Gansu Province, just north of Sichuan. The building, like so many others, was damaged by an aftershock. All 80 children have been living outside in tents to keep safe. Unfortunately, the weather has been damp and chilly.

Love Without Boundaries was able to contact the director and found out they were in need of warm clothing and diapers. In perfect timing, we had just finished a clothing fundraiser for this SWI, through our Orphanage Assistance program! Due to the generosity of the SWI adoptive parent group, we were able to send a large shipment of clothing and diapers just when they were needed most.

Don’t the babies look snug in their new clothes?

The little one on the right gets my 'cutie-pie of the year' nomination!

This little one is counting how many layers her friend is wearing:

It looks like some of the children are enjoying several sets of clothing.... :o)

It appears the sun has at last come out. How wonderful it is to see the children warm and dry, enjoying the day in their walkers.

I love how the babies clap and wave, unaware of the tragedy nearby.

One of these little guys will join his forever family in just a few weeks. His anxious mama was relieved to see pictures of him safe and sound!

We are thankful for all the loving Ayis in the earthquake area who are working so hard to keep the children fed, warm, and safe, despite their difficult circumstances.

Laura Baldwin

Orphanage Assistance Coordinator

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Teaching Moments in Fujian

On Tuesday, May 20th the Jinjiang, Fujian SWI moved into its brand new orphanage. A part of the move included our Believe In Me students, teachers and learning materials into brand new classrooms. With Children’s Day coming soon, the teachers decided to celebrate with something these children had never experienced before, a cake! Not only had the students not had cake before, they also did not know about the fruits that decorated the top of the cake.

Now this celebration also had a learning opportunity that could occur.

First the teachers read to the children about fruit.

Next they colored pictures of fruit.

Last they had the chance to taste the fruit, on top of a beautiful cake! Yum!!

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Craft for China Auction

Craft for China is a fundraiser that raises money through donated arts & crafts. 100% of the money goes to sponsoring orphaned children living in China. Funds that are raised help to sponsor two LWB program children:
Emma, who is in foster care and Gracie, so she can attend preschool.
In order to continue their sponsorship Craft for China is holding an arts and crafts auction on eBay. The auction is live now and all the money raised will go for another year of sponsorship for Gracie and Emma. If the auction can raise enough money another LWB child will be sponsored.
Pictured are some of the items offered in the auction. The auction ends June 7th!
Please visit the auction at and check out all the wonderful items.
To learn more about Craft for China please visit the website at .
Thank you and happy bidding!!

A Celebration for Our Incredible Teachers

Love Without Boundaries is so fortunate to have
such wonderful, dedicated teachers and staff to work in our five Believe in Me Schools. We recently treated our amazing teachers in Shantou to a luncheon out with several SWI officials and our LWB Guangdong Administrator.

These teachers truly love the children in Shantou and give of themselves above and beyond what is expected. This is quite a compliment considering we have very high expectations of our Believe in Me teachers.

We so appreciate our monthly education sponsors who make it possible for us to hire these fabulous teachers and operate these schools for children who would otherwise have no opportunity to obtain an education.

Karen McGinty
Shantou Education Coordinator

Monday, June 02, 2008

Earthquake Update--Three Weeks Later

It has been three weeks since the devastating earthquake hit Sichuan. As I have watched the news reports and read the articles from the comfort and safety of my living room, I try to comprehend the numbers of people affected by this devastation: 71,000 dead, 5 million homeless. But what does this mean? I understand these are incredibly huge numbers. It is easy to feel sad, shake my head, and then continue with my day.

In an effort to really grasp the magnitude of the devastation, I have made some comparisons:

71,000 people dead:

That is 6,000 people less than the population of the city of Melbourne, Australia.

The war in Vietnam claimed the lives of 58,217 American soldiers.

5 million homeless:

That is two-thirds of the population of New York City.

Think about that—two-thirds of all the people in NYC suddenly without a home!

The population of Finland is 5.2 million—almost an entire country homeless.

Love Without Boundaries has delivered formula to Chongqing Civil Affairs, and we are currently working on long-term relief efforts. We have a doctor visiting three orphanages in the hardest hit areas to assess the situation for us. Once we receive his report and recommendations, we will be better able to decide how to best use the funds our supporters have entrusted to us.

We appreciate every organization and individual who are working to help with relief efforts. Although our efforts are small compared with the magnitude of this disaster, we know that the combined efforts of many groups and people will make a difference for those in need.

Thank you so much for your support and concern for the victims of this tragedy.

Check out updates on our Earthquake News website page at:


When I was a young child, I wanted to grow up to be Mrs. Santa Claus. This is because I wanted to have access to Santa’s giant sack containing every kind of toy in the world. I grew out of the Mrs. Claus phase by the time I was 6, but I doubt the excitement over seeing new toys ever really leaves a person.

It occurred to me this morning that I am creating new
Santa Clauses with our Foster Care Managers as they are being sent a variety toys and books, for every age group, to carry around with them when they do their monthly visit.

I can just see the curiosity on the children’s faces wondering what will come out of the sack. And the best part is that every child will get a new toy. But I am getting ahead of myself here on how this all started.

In order to more closely monitor developmental progress in the children, we have revised our foster care report format. The Henan programs were the first to try out the new format on our April reports.

The new report has several sections which include movement, vision & hearing, language, cognitive, and social development. The new format has been useful in determining where the children are developmentally. They also give the foster families ideas for age-appropriate activities to promote development. Each age group has different developmental milestones to check their progress against. The reports vary every other month so that the children have 2 months to work on their progress before they are tested again.

As we know from experience, children who have spent their first months in an institution may be somewhat delayed due to the lack of one-on-one attention that families can provide. We are hopeful that these new reports can more closely monitor the development of our foster children and we can intervene when necessary to get the best care for the kids as early as possible.

Much of a child's development centers on play. We have learned that many of the children do not have toys in the home that help promote their development and learning.

So, we are providing the foster care children age-appropriate toys so that they can be encouraged to develop to the best of their ability.

This will be a learning process for all of us to see if this format will help the children. We are hopeful that it will a the first step on the road to a brighter tomorrow.

Note: please disregard the child eating the book that we sent. This program is still in the trial stages.

For more information about our Foster Care Programs please go to: