These are the families who have taken a leap of faith and committed to adopt one or more of our orphaned children most recently.
These are the families who have taken a leap of faith and committed to adopt one or more of our orphaned children most recently.
Meet the Geno family! Matt and Brynne Geno have been married for 3 years and have a one-year-old boy named Levi. Brynne works as a special education teacher and Matt is a chemical analyst in a chemical plant. They live in south Louisiana.
Both Matt and Brynne felt a call to adopt before getting married. Brynne served on two summer mission teams in Eastern Europe in 2012 and 2013. Matt served in Ukraine for 6 months doing mission work in 2013. Also, Matt’s younger sister is adopted from Ukraine. They have both felt called to adopt from Eastern Europe, specifically, due to their time serving the Lord there.
They have committed to a sweet two-year-old girl with an infectious smile. She is diagnosed with cerebral palsy and developmental delays. They are committed to her and currently wrapping up our home study. Thank you in advance for your generosity, and please keep them in your prayers!
“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” Matthew 25:40
6/1/2020 — HOMESTUDY in PROCESS
The Lewandowski family are in the process of adopting an aged-out boy – or two – from Eastern Europe.
Kevin and Natalia met online. Both grew up in totally different communities, totally different surroundings, and totally different countries. Kevin was raised in family-oriented Polish community and has always seen his own role as a person who is supporting strong family bonds.
Growing up in a Ukrainian blue-collar family, Natalia always had a heart for those who were in need. Living and volunteering in Ukraine and the USA for multiple church and community services gave her opportunities to reach out to those who were living below the poverty level such as the elderly and people with disabilities. There was something special about Ukrainian orphans though that was always on her mind over the past 2 decades: orphanages are meant to provide shelter, clothes, and basic nutrition, but cannot ever be a substitute for real FAMILY.
Kevin and Natalia hosted a 16-year-old boy during the summer of 2019. It was not an easy summer, but it gave them a chance to feel an orphan’s emotional pain and trauma. Kevin and Natalia understand that it may take a lifetime to help their son learn to cope with the physical and emotional trauma caused by institutional and parental neglect. The other boy they are considering was also hosted but his family, after deciding to adopt, was not able to proceed. Other families that had been interested in this boy assumed he was being adopted, and by the time the family discovered they could not proceed, it was too late for another family to do anything because he had aged out.
Raising funds for a teenager’s adoption is not easy task, but both Natalia and Kevin strongly believe that they were called for this adoption and God will provide by using people’s hearts and hands. Please consider teaming up with this family in this financial challenge that will change ONE orphan’s life, or maybe even TWO.
5/28/2020 — HOMESTUDY COMPLETE
Rodney and Alisha Keim live in Atkinson, Nebraska with their children Josiah, Selah, Jeremiah, and Tallulah. Jeremiah was adopted from Thailand in 2015 and Tallulah from Asia in 2019. The family was first matched with Tallulah through her advocacy page at Reece’s Rainbow. In one of the photos, she was pictured with another little boy who also captured their hearts. Had it been possible to adopt them together, that would have been their desire. The family met Eli while in country finalizing the adoption of Tallulah in May of 2019.
Their “happy family” picture was taken at the orphanage. Just after the picture was taken, the Keim family left the orphanage with Tallulah. Just before the photo was taken, Eli was taken back to join the other kids without families, bawling. The Keim family longs for the day they can see him again, the day his friend will become his sister. They pray he will come to understand how much he was loved that day and that he holds a piece of their broken hearts in his.
The last piece of paperwork the family will need in order to submit their dossier has been sitting on a desk in the USCIS office since March (just before immigration biometrics offices shut down due to the COVID-19 Pandemic). The family asks for your prayer: perhaps the God who moves mountains can push that little piece of paper on through soon. They also ask you to consider giving a donation to help them bring Eli home! Rodney and Alisha are each self-employed by small businesses that have been impacted by the Coronavirus shutdowns. God continues to provide graciously for their every need… perhaps you are one way he will provide for the adoption of Eli!
5/26/2020 — COMPILING DOSSIER
*** Elijah received a $5,000 Grant! ***
We are the Rinehart family and we are adopting! This will be our third and final adoption from Asia. We have six grown children and multiple grandchildren. Our home and family are full of people and love. Our two youngest daughters (ages 8 & 6), adopted in 2017 and 2018, are eagerly awaiting their little sister! We began our adoption journey in 2016 after the Lord laid in on our hearts over a several year period to adopt. The journey was like chipping away at stone to reveal the diamond underneath. The first time we saw her picture we were hooked! Little did we know then that we would repeat the process two more times. Like her sisters before her, our newest little one has stolen our hearts and we know that she is our daughter! We hope to bring her home this fall. With all of the uncertainty in the world, we would appreciate your prayer. Please pray for our family to get through this process quickly and that travel would be safe and available when it comes time to travel. If the Holy Spirit moves you to donate, we would certainly appreciate that as well. Thank you!
5/18/2020 — COMPILING DOSSIER
We are Carrie and Ken Woods, parents of six children, four adopted from Asia and two biological. We met in high school and have been married for almost 34 years. Our children range in ages from 8 to 31 and we are also excited to soon be grandparents. We started our first adoption in 2000 and over the years we have been fortunate to grow our family one at a time. Our last adoption in 2015 started with looking at several files and came down to two beautiful girls. It was a difficult decision but we are thankful that we brought our new daughter home when we did because she has needed significant medical care over the last 5 years. Fate would have it that the file for the other little girl came to our attention at the end of last year and we felt we were in a place to move forward and bring her home. She has always been in our hearts and now she will be in our lives and loving home.
5/15/2020 — HOMESTUDY COMPLETE
Mollie doesn’t remember the exact moment when adoption was put on her heart and in her mind. But, she does remember it was all consuming. She tried to get away from it. But, she couldn’t. It was there and it wouldn’t go away. It was 2015. By early 2016 she finally worked up the nerve to bring it up to her husband, Bryan. It’s not that they didn’t talk often, or that they kept secrets. It’s that she thought he would think that she was crazy! You see… they had seven biological children and they thought they were done. Their family felt complete.
Earlier that year their youngest, at seven years old, had had open heart surgery. She had recovered and was doing great. Their oldest son was engaged to be married. Life was good. But, that nagging adoption thing wouldn’t go away. So she told him. And, the miracle of it all was that he had been thinking about it, too.
In April 2017, one month after their first grandchild was born, they came home with not one, but two sons from China. They were their pride and joy! But life wasn’t ever going to be the same. It was overwhelming! But, one day at a time, one sleepless night at a time, they got through it.
They went into adoption with their eyes wide open, or so they thought. In the end both boys, their sons, had needs that had been undiscovered. The words deaf and autism, and global delays were added to their family. But guess what? These were their children, the ones they fell in love with before they had ever met them! They held on because God knew what they needed. They needed to depend upon him totally. Three years later their adopted sons are thriving and their biological children have learned so much about love and the privilege to know people with special needs.
In 2020 that call to adopt has become strong in their family again. This time they have felt called to consider adopting a little girl with that beautiful extra chromosome. They want to add a child with Down syndrome to their family. And, once again it’s the same, that all consuming desire is there to give a child a family. Would you please pray God will make a way?
5/11/2020 — HOMESTUDY COMPLETE
Meet the Luckow family. They are finally excited to expand their family to a party of 3! Lauren and Drew were both born and raised in south Florida. After meeting through mutual friends they were inseparable. Moving forward to being happily married for 3 years, settling into their homes and careers, they have chosen to move forward with adoption.
In their hearts they have always wanted to adopt, and specifically adopt a child with Down syndrome. Over the past few years Lauren & Drew have volunteered with the Special Olympics, Starability and other local organizations. With spending time with the athletes and children, they knew they wanted to start growing their family with adoption, despite being able to conceive on their own.
They spent a lot of time educating themselves on international adoption and looking through advocacy websites. Coincidentally both Lauren and Drew came across “Clementine” through different advocacy sites and felt very strongly God saying, “This is your child.” This is just the start for the Luckow family. In time they would like to expand their family. Your support and prayers are greatly appreciated in this process. Thank you!
5/5/2020 — COMPILING DOSSIER
We are the Redfern Family. We have 9 children between the ages of 8-30 years old right now. Our oldest daughter is married and pregnant with our second grand baby. Our oldest son is finishing his masters and getting married this summer. One son lives in a neighboring town where he works. Our two oldest girls at home graduate from high school this year.
We are in process to bring home a sibling group from Eastern Europe. A boy and a girl. The girl has special needs. The children we hope to adopt are not on hold for us until our first trip. If they are not available then we will be shown other referrals of children matching our homestudy. Our prayer though is that this sibling group will be available for us. We are excited to be adding to our family. The cost of this adoption will be approximately $39,000 both children. This is why we have set a goal of $25,000.00. We have paid $10,000 of the cost so far and will be able to save another $5000.00 towards it. It’s hard to have garage sales, bake sales and such with a virus around. We will be applying for grants as soon as we can. If you can donate we would be forever grateful. If you can not, that is absolutely fine too! We know times are tough right now.
We would love prayer requests for the following issues if you feel led. 1) That this sibling group will be available as we love them already and they could be kept in the same orphanage until we can travel. This will save quite a bit of money (we have budgeted this way above believing that God will do this). That they are safe and fed until we can come and their hearts prepared to love a new family. That they can be adopted at the same time. 2) That this country would waive the 30 day waiting period, allowing me to make 2 trips instead of three. The area they are in have never waived it but other areas have. I believe it will for sure not happen if we don’t ask God. So I am asking him. 3) That He will prepare the hearts of the siblings at home. They are very excited. And that Torey and I would have wisdom to raise all our children to have a personal relationship with Christ and to love Him with their whole hearts. 4) That He would provide as He sees fit.
5/5/2020 — HOMESTUDY in PROCESS
Dave and Erin Briar have been blessed with eight children – two boys, five girls and one older “daughter-of-the-heart” – Alicia. Dave and Erin met Alicia at church while serving overseas in the US military. They quickly bonded with Alicia, invited her into their home, and “adopted” her at age 20. In essence, a daughter-of-the-heart. They love all their kids from oldest at age 28 to the youngest at age 12. Caliana will be a much-loved and welcome addition to their family — another daughter-of-the-heart.
The last five years have brought a lot of change to the Briars’ lives. Dave retired from active duty. The family moved back to their home in Tok, Alaska, where Dave works for an Alaska-based company. Several other aspects of their family situation changed and they felt the Lord wanted them to be doing something different. That ‘different’ was being introduced to Reece’s Rainbow by one of their daughters. From the very beginning Caliana caught Erin’s heart. After much prayer and talking it over as a family (who are all very much excited by another sister!) they have started the journey to bring home another daughter-of-the-heart!
Dave served in the US Air Force for 30+ years and the Briars moved around quite a bit before settling in Tok, Alaska. The Briars have lived in Texas, Delaware, South Carolina, Mississippi, Kansas, Nevada, Maryland, and Alaska. They also lived in Germany for six consecutive years and South Korea for a total of six years on three separate assignments. In addition, Dave did an unaccompanied tour in Honduras and two combat tours in Iraq. As a result, the Briars are no stranger to overseas living and culture. But living in a foreign country never slowed down their desire to grow their family. In fact, four of their children were born overseas – two in Germany and two in Korea. They feel that having a daughter born in Eastern Europe will further add to the international flavor of their family. And Caliana will ensure that the Briars born overseas outnumber those born in the US!
4/28/2020 — HOMESTUDY in PROCESS
We are Jeff and Mollie, parents of 9 living children, as well as one, Hannah, who passed away in 1991. Three of our children still live at home, while the others are married and living independently, or in college. We have one grandson at this time! His name is Austin and he is two. He is the center of attention most of the time and we love opportunities for him to come and stay the night.
We met while Jeff attended college and Mollie’s mother met him in a bookstore and invited him to church. It was in church we met for the first time, became best friends, dated, and in March of 1978, we became engaged then married in 1979. We both had a calling from God to serve in some capacity in the ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ. We moved to the area near Chicago and attended Bible college. After graduation, we began our career in the field of ministry. We’ve had the privilege of Pastoring 3 churches and working in a Bible college in Texas. We have been completely in love with each other and with our children. As a family we are actively busy serving in our churches in a variety of ways. We are a musical family of pianists, guitar playing and singing. Our family has known the satisfaction that comes in truly making a difference in the lives of those who need us in our communities and churches, from our seniors and our ministries to people with special needs, and those in our inner cities and nursing homes.
Our family loves to laugh and have fun but also practices our faith and applies a “person centered” approach with each of our family members. We are a family of a variety of backgrounds and races. We adopted our oldest son from Honduras and another daughter from Seattle who is part Eskimo Indian..
We do have our times of stress but have learned to talk things out and pray together about our differences and show love and support to each other.
What is important to us is making a difference in the lives of children with special needs. Our first born daughter Hannah, was born with Down syndrome. She died at age 4 after her 4th heart surgery. We were told we would never have more children and began to adopt. Then we had three more biological children! Each person in our family is so unique and plays a vital role in our family structure. Jeff is now a retired Pastor but does teaches others through an online Bible college. Mollie works with the state of Ohio as an independent provider for adults and children with special needs. We also have helped churches start ministries to include people with special needs within the congregation. We feel this is so vital today. Not long ago, we saw a photo and read the narrative on Vivi and wanted to help her so began to call families we knew. After not finding someone who would undertake this we decided why not us? We want to adopt her ourselves and pray Vivi can be a part of our family. This will more than likely be our last adoption as we are getting older! We know that God can open the door for us and make this happen and we would appreciate your prayers and support. We are both in good health and love our busy happy family life and feel Vivi would be loved and happy here!
4/24/2020 — HOMESTUDY in PROCESS
*** The child the family is adopting has received a $5,000 Older Child Grant! ***
Hi there! We are the Park family, Bryce, Annie, Benson and Emmaline. We met through friends in 2009 and hit it off. After a cup of coffee and talking all night- the rest is history. We got married in 2011 and have since welcome 2 biological children into the world. We’ve fostered 2 children with disabilities and have always known there is a permanent place in our home and family for a child with special needs- who might not otherwise have one.
Most of our adult life has been spent taking care of people with disabilities in many capacities, from direct support, to foster care, to lifelong friendships. We have a passion caring for and loving people with disabilities.
We have been fortunate in our journey to parenthood, and we are looking to grow our family. We are finally in a place where the time is right for us to expand our love and give a deserving child a home. Our children are excited for their next brother or sister!
5/4/2020 — HOMESTUDY COMPLETE
Leah is a lifelong Navy sailor who grew up as a dependent and is now active duty. When she was a young girl living in Hawaii, her stay-at-home RN mother fostered several children under 2 who had special needs for a few months and one at a time while they were between more permanent homes. Even though she was only 5 years old at the time, she fell in love with a baby named Emily whose smile she can still remember and was old enough to understand that adopting meant adding a child who didn’t come out of my mommy’s tummy. Since then, adoption has been at the forefront of her mind when it comes to adding kids to a family of her own.
In 2015 while stationed on a ship, her church hosted an adoption agency that talked about older child adoption. They told her that even single women who work full time on a Navy ship can adopt. Leah knew that her time was coming when she would add to her family of one.
In January of 2019, a friend shared the Reece’s Rainbow page of a girl who was aging out and Leah felt the tug on her heart. She began prayerfully considering adoption in the near future and knew it was almost time. Almost one exact year later, another girl with the same special needs was shared to Facebook by a friend who had already completed an adoption for a child on Reece’s Rainbow and was working on her second. Leah knew it was time and began her home study that month.
First time international adoption can be a long and difficult process and the child that Leah is working toward adopting doesn’t have much time! Any kind of help is welcomed and appreciated and thanks to all who follow this journey to make the Davis family go from one to two!
4/14/2020 — HOMESTUDY in PROCESS
James and Colleen met when Colleen was freshman and James was a junior, in college. We started dating five years after that and we married 2012. We found out in 2014 we couldn’t have children biologically. As it broke our hearts, we immediately knew we were meant to adopt. Before we got married, we spoke about the possibility of fostering and adoption, as Colleen knew as a young girl she wanted to adopt. At that time, we found Reece’s Rainbow, and instantly we found our son. We adopted Jacob in 2016 from Bulgaria and he will be 7 in July. Four years later, a little girl in Eastern Europe has our hearts and God has very clearly said go, just like what happened, four years ago.
4/8/2020 — HOMESTUDY in PROCESS
The Reinecke family is no stranger to international special needs adoption. They returned from Eastern Europe last summer with their twin girls and are now ready to go back for a little boy!
Rebecca started researching international adoption while she was in college, knowing that with her own health conditions she might not be able to build a family in the traditional way. She already had three cousins added to her family through adoption and felt that this could be a good plan for her as well. She spent hours reading the blog “The Blessing of Verity” and fell in love with the idea of adopting a child with special needs. Years later, she became engaged to Brendyn and was listed for a pancreas transplant shortly after. Plans were in the works to build a family through both biological and adopted children and then a pancreas became available, which changed their lives forever, in the best and hardest ways possible. The surgery that was supposed to make conceiving easier, ended with complications that made carrying a child dangerous for mom and baby. Always planning on adopting anyway, they decided to move the plans for adoption to the forefront and began researching. Rebecca remembered that blog from so long ago and started sharing the idea with Brendyn who agreed that adopting a child with special needs would be something they were well situated to do with Rebecca’s nursing experience and personal experience with medical conditions. On July 17, 2018 Rebecca saw an advocacy post for 3.5 year old twins and they decided to get more information. It was love at first sight and they had the commitment paperwork with them to mail out on the first day of their honeymoon a couple weeks later. Twelve months after they saw the picture they brought Margo and Rose home to Wisconsin.
A few months after returning home with the twins, a little boy on Reece’s Rainbow named “Klein” started popping up on Rebecca’s newsfeed. She couldn’t help but notice how similar he was to Margo, who is completely blind from Retinopathy of Prematurity. He still had the light in his eyes that was quickly fading from Margo when they picked her up in July. He was sitting in a room familiar to the family and had the same black hair and dark eyes. They were not yet eligible to adopt and he became the first Reece’s Rainbow child that Rebecca advocated for. A couple months passed and he was still listed and tugging on Rebecca’s heartstrings. The time was coming when they would be eligible to adopt again and Rebecca brought him up to Brendyn and they requested more information. After much conversation, they decided it was meant to be and they signed on with their placing agency New Year’s Eve 2019. Since signing on with their agency they have dove into the paperwork and doing everything they can to get him home as quickly as possible. Rebecca, Brendyn, Margo, and Rose are all excited to welcome this little boy into their family!
3/30/2020 — HOMESTUDY COMPLETE
Brian and Stephanie’s family has been grown in nearly every way possible: biology, step parenting, foster care and international adoption. Eight of their children are “permanent members” but a handful of extras call them mom and dad from their years as foster parents and Brian and Stephanie love the crazy joy that their large family brings.
When they brought home their daughter, Nadya Rose, from Eastern Europe right before Christmas in 2018, Stephanie said “see you soon” to their daughter’s birth country as the plane took them home to America. Fulfilling that promise, the Higgins family is adopting another tiny “homie with an extra chromie” and are excited to watch their littlest daughter become a big sister to the little one they are affectionately calling “cheeks.”
3/30/2020 — HOMESTUDY COMPLETE
Brian and Julie Swegle are the parents of 7. After raising their 6 birth children, they decided that they were still young enough and brave enough to add more children to their family through adoption. Because Julie is a teacher for the visually impaired at a school for the deaf and the blind, they felt particularly equipped to parent children who are blind. So, 1.5 years ago they welcomed a daughter from China (who is deafblind) to their family. She was such a joyful addition to the family that they decided to grow their family through adoption for a second time.
Through a series of seemingly well-orchestrated circumstances, Madeline and her need for a family to adopt her immediately came to the attention of the Swegle family. When they read Madeline’s story they fell in love with her and realized how well she would fit into their growing family. Brian and Julie are hoping to bring Madeline home as quickly as possible. They are so grateful for the opportunity to be Madeline’s parents and for all those who are joining them in helping Madeline. Thank you for joining the Swegle family on their journey to Madeline!
3/20/2020 — HOMESTUDY COMPLETE
Hello! We are Madisen and Allen Crapo. We are so excited to finally be in this place and would love to share a small part of our story with you. When we were dating and things began to become serious, I (Madisen) brought up the possibility of adopting a child with DS in the future. I was nervous to hear his response, but he was equally as excited and on board. We always knew adoption would be part of our lives, though we didn’t know what a large part it would play. As teenagers, we were blessed with a beautiful little girl, who we chose to bless another family with. We were not prepared financially or emotionally at the time for a child and are so blessed with our new family. We were thrown into the adoption community, and we have learned so much.
Through our new found friends, we found Reece’s Rainbow. The plan was eventually, when everything was perfect, to adopt from an Eastern European country whose children we felt a strong pull to. God had other plans, and a few years ago placed a sweet boy in our hearts. We became determined to start the process much sooner than planned. We had to wade our way through school and starting careers while trying to wait patiently. We are so grateful that we saw his picture, while available, to give us that extra push to have faith. Though we know there is no guarantee of receiving his referral, we have already seen countless miracles in our process that confirm to us we are on the right path. Our daughter (5) is so nurturing and we are excited to see her welcome her new brother and become officially outnumbered (our son is 2). We are incredibly thankful for any help, both spiritual and financial, that you can provide!
3/4/2020 — HOMESTUDY COMPLETE
Phil and Maggie have been married for 10 years and have been blessed with 5 beautiful children, ages 9, 7, 6, 4, and 3. Phil is a writer and works from home. Maggie homeschools the children and the whole family gets to spend most of their time together, which is something they do not take for granted.
Maggie felt drawn toward adoption from a young age and, through experience with family members and through volunteering at a local organization that employs those with special needs, she developed a special love for those with Down syndrome. Phil has not always felt called to adoption, but Maggie asked him to pray about the possibility of adopting. Several years later, after finding out that his grandfather was adopted, Phil’s heart opened and he was on board. They both felt called to international adoption from the start and, through prayer and various circumstances, they discerned that God was leading them toward an Asian adoption.
There were three little boys that they felt drawn to during the referral process. Two of these boys had families hoping to adopt them once their home studies were approved, which gave Phil and Maggie peace about pursuing the third little boy. Something about his picture really grabbed their hearts and they were so excited that he might become a part of their family.
After a roller coaster of twists and turns and many months delay, they finally received pre-approval to adopt Chip. Their other children fell in love with him instantly and already consider him a part of the family. The 3-year-old loves to pray for “Chippy” and they can’t wait until they get to meet him face to face, as they feel like he has been in their hearts forever.
They feel so blessed to have been called to the beautiful journey of adoption. Financial hardships have been many throughout the process, but they are trusting that the Lord will provide for them as He always has. Thank you to anyone willing to assist in bringing their new son home! May God Bless you!
3/3/2020 — COMPILING DOSSIER