These families are in country now…meeting their child for the first time as a result of your life-saving donations
These families are in country now…meeting their child for the first time as a result of your life-saving donations
Kayla and Gino Canessa have been married for 9 years and are the parents of 4 kids. They have now been through international adoption before. Their first adoption was a set of two, adopted from Eastern Europe in 2018.
Kayla wanted to adopt a sweet boy she saw online almost 4 years ago, but he kept being unavailable due to being hosted. She kept the feelings for that little guy for a very long time, following him online, wishing him well. Until one day, she saw him available for hosting, it was her chance and she took it immediately! Hosting went wonderfully, they finally met the kid they had fall in love with, he fit effortlessly with the family, he was happy and expressed he wanted them to become his forever family. Everybody was happy!
Gino and Kayla wanted to adopt him as quickly as possible and worked very hard on their side. The process, however, has been painfully slow, with many bumps on the road, due to delays beyond the family’s control.
The latest thing that happened is that they were on their way to K’s country to sign the paperwork at the American Embassy and visit their boy, who was anxiously waiting for them. They arrived in Amsterdam but weren’t allowed to board any connecting flight to reach K’s country. No matter how much they tried, they were denied every time. The American Embassy had somebody calling them and advised them to turn around and go back home immediately, since borders were gonna be closed and airports shut down, due to the Coronavirus. Heartbroken, they returned on the first plane available the next day.
Like all of the other families currently in process, the Canessa’s are distressed, worrying for their boy and his safety. Worried about fundraising during quarantine and how things are gonna be after that. They worry because their boy is running out of time, he is aging out and has medical needs that haven’t been properly addressed in his country and some others that haven’t been addressed at all. K is painfully aware of that and has started losing hope. He’s completely scared, filled with anxiety and sadness. He needs out, the family needs to go get their boy as soon as possible. Their USCIS deadline is dangerously close to expiring.
They are so grateful for the opportunity to be K’s parents and for all those who are willing to join them in helping to bring K home. They know these are hard times due to the pandemic and all its repercussions, but they are also aware of people having big hearts for the kids in need. They would be SO appreciative and grateful for any support!
7/16/2020 — OFFICIAL REFERRAL ACCEPTED
We are the Browns! We are a family of 14 hoping to add one more to our crazy, wonderful life. Daniel and Svetlana met in Russia. Daniel was serving there as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. After a year of being back in the United States, Daniel asked Svetlana to come here and be his wife. They have been married for over 22 years and have 12 amazing children ages: 5, 8, 9, 9, 12, 13, 14, 14, 16, 18, 20, 25.
Daniel is the oldest of 10 children. So, a big family is not a big deal to him. Daniel is also a high school teacher, and a Robotics Club Coach. Which, of course, helps in dealing with lots of children and the chaos that can ensue.
Svetlana grew up in Russia and is an only child. She always dreamed of a big family and adopting from an orphanage. She has taken several medical classes to help prepare her for the special needs of each child.
Their children are excited to have new siblings to love. Although the three oldest children are out of the home; They come back to visit, and help out, as often as possible. All of the children enjoy being able to love, work with, and watch the development of those less fortunate. They are looking forward to the great service of compassion that they will be able to give these special children.
7/22/2020 — REFERRAL ACCEPTED
Bodie and Krista Dowding first talked about adopting before they were even married. Both agreed that they would someday adopt. Fast forward a few years and their house is a very chaotic joyous place full of three boys five and under. “I couldn’t shake this nudge that even though we had three young boys we were supposed to start looking into adoption,” Krista says, “ I didn’t think it would happen this fast!”
In November of 2018 Krista was talking on the phone when the friend asked if Bodie and Krista felt called to international adoption. Krista wasn’t sure at the time which road of adoption they would pursue. After learning about the lives of many aged out orphan girls in Romania, Bodie and Krista knew they had a heart for the girls in Eastern Europe but, unless they felt an overwhelming call to a certain country, they’d decided to go the cheaper route and adopt domestically. The friend encouraged Krista to check out a Blog called Ransom for Israel and Krista was immediately hooked.
Soon after, Krista clicked on a link to another site called Reeces Rainbow. As she scrolled through images of special needs children, one particular girl caught her attention. “During the next week I asked friends to pray for Bodie because I couldn’t get this little girl out of my head and I thought she might be the one. If she was, Bodie needed to feel called to adopt her as well. At this point, he really thought we should wait a few years to adopt.”
A week and a half after Krista first discovered this girl on Reeces Rainbow she went back to the site and her profile had changed. It now included “Blind in one eye.” Such a little change excited Krista because she’d talked to Bodie about how feeling particularly drawn to adopting a child with blindness or deafness. Bodie walked in from work that day and Krista playfully announced “I found our girl!” Bodie looked at the screen and then playfully responded back “ok! Write the check!”
He wasn’t kidding. No matter what the issues were that this girl was dealing with, both Bodie and Krista felt she was supposed to be a part of their family. Within a couple weeks they’d committed to her. Their little boys are eager to welcome a new sister and often ask “Can we go get Bailey today?” Time stands still for these brothers as the wait seems too long and the work to get her here continues day and night. They don’t realize that as soon as their parents say good night they begin more paperwork and scanning and printing and planning. So the work continues, one day at a time until she’s home.
7/20/2020 — AWAITING COURT
Colin and Kym have been married sixteen years and have nine biological children. Colin is a firefighter/paramedic and Kym is a homeschooling Mom.
Since even before they were married, Colin and Kym talked about adopting one day. It has always been something that was on their hearts. They had several friends who had adopted, and Kym followed their stories and their blogs and passed along their stories to Colin. They were always curious about what those friends had said of their adopted children: “I just knew that child was mine.” They wondered: “What did that feel like, to look at the face of a child half the world away, and to know that child belonged to you?” It was a mystery to them.
One day, Kym was sitting at the computer following still another adoption story, when up popped the face of a little boy staring right back at her. That face. Those eyes. She knew instantly what her friends had meant when they had said they “knew.”
The face looking back at her was her son.
She immediately sent a text to Colin and asked that he check out the little guy’s file. He too was moved. But they already had nine kids of their own – one still a baby – they had a family trip which had already been planned, and Colin was looking at leaving one fire department to go work for another. It wasn’t a good time.
Three months later, when life was a bit slower, Kym asked Colin if he ever thought of that little guy. Without saying a word, Colin pulled his phone from his pocket, turned it on, and showed her the Reece’s Rainbow page that had been opened all that time. “I’ve never closed the file. I look at him every day,” Colin said quietly. And then he said, “I think we need to bring him home.”
Obviously, the budget is tight when you’ve got nine kids eating you out of house and home, so Colin simply trusts and prays daily: “God, I’m just a lowly firefighter with a firefighter’s salary. If this is supposed to happen, You’re going to have to come up with the money to make it happen.” And so far, GOD HAS PROVIDED! For every piece of paperwork, document submittal, or fingerprinting appointment, God has provided them with the exact funds they have needed to pay for those things at the time they have needed them.
There is still so much to be done and more money to be found, but they have great confidence that all will come through at the time it is meant to, so they forge ahead and eagerly prepare their kids, their hearts, and their home, for the new little Fachling who will join them next year.
7/14/2019 — PASSED COURT; AWAITING FINAL TRIP
Greetings from the Wood Family! We are Brian, Kristen, Graysen, Emma Rae, and Blake and coming soon, a new daughter to be named Katie! We have been married for 10 wonderful years, and we have 3 amazing children. Brian is a student pastor at Point Harbor Church and Kristen is a Registered Nurse working in an elementary school.
Shortly after being married, we started talking about adoption and really felt a tug in our hearts early on specifically for China. About 4 years into our marriage, some friends of ours adopted their sweet girl from China and that started a ripple effect and we soon were surrounded with so many friends who said “YES” to their children in China. This only fueled our hearts more for China.
After we moved to VA, we were introduced to another family who has adopted 3 babies with Down Syndrome from China. Down Syndrome had never been on our radar, however, we fell absolutely in love with these amazing children. Although we always had a peace about China, God began to break our hearts specifically for children with Down Syndrome.
We were “introduced” to our daughter on Reece’s Rainbow site. Katie has Down Syndrome, CHD, and repaired VSD and PFO. She is an absolute doll and we cannot wait to have her in our arms. Katie will be 2 years old in July and we want to have her home as soon as we can. She has 3 siblings who are over the moon for her already and are so ready to have their sister home.
Please help our family to bring our daughter home! We plan to travel with our two oldest children, who are 11 and 9 yrs old. We greatly appreciate all prayers and financial support as we continue our adoption journey to complete our family!
3/11/2020 — TA RECEIVED in JANUARY; AWAITING TRAVEL
Abby and Adam met in 2012 and were married the following year. They live in the Pacific Northwest with their two children Leo (4) and Magnolia (2). Abby is currently on pause from being a special education teacher and will return to the classroom once her children are in school full-time, and Adam works as an Account Director for a digital marketing agency. Adoption had always been in the back of Adam and Abby’s mind, and they were unsure of when the timing would be just “right.” After talking about it for a year they knew it was time and they were ready to figure it all out. Near the middle of their home study process, they received an advocacy email from their adoption agency and in an instant, they knew that they were looking at their son. They are excited to be on this journey and look forward to welcoming a third child to their family!
9/16/20 — AWAITING COURT
*** Davi has received a $2,000 Grant! ***
The Myatt family has been involved in the hosting and adoption world since 2014. Due to changes in many countries, the Myatt’s have decided to adopt from Colombia. Adoption has been a dream of Stephanie’s since she was a young girl in 5th grade. Tommy and Stephanie have been married for 13 years and have 3 biological children: Dylan (15), Bryson (11) and Cohen (8).
Tommy is a Calibrations Engineer for a titanium company where he has worked for almost 13 years. Stephanie is a homeschool mom and also works for a non-profit agency. With baseball for Dylan, science for Bryson and football for Cohen, the family’s life is full, but they are so excited to welcome a sweet girl into their family now. They welcome all the pink and frilly things into their world!!
The Myatt’s have chosen to host their child this summer while finishing up adoption paperwork. Due to the way things work in Colombia this will streamline the process. They will have their dossier ready to submit to Colombia in July when the children arrive for hosting. They anticipate traveling in late fall. They are anxiously filling out paperwork and raising funds to bring their daughter home and would appreciate your love, prayers and support.
6/17/2020 — TRAVELING in SEPTEMBER
Melanie and Luke Dabbs have been best friends since their senior year of high school. The two met at a church they were both attending in 2010, and have been inseparable ever since! After courting for 7 years, they were married in Raleigh, NC in April, 2017. They now live in Raleigh with their corgi-terrier mix, Kona. They both love superheroes, Disney movies, cosplaying, traveling, and board games. Melanie is a teacher of the Deaf and hard of hearing, and teaches at a middle school. Luke is a Real Estate photographer and just graduated from NC State University with a major in Spanish. Melanie and Luke love language, traveling, and different cultures, and are excited to get to know their adopted child’s home country and culture.
Since Melanie was a little girl, she has dreamed of growing her family through adoption. It was something she talked to Luke about before they were married, and they were both in agreement that they would adopt someday. However, with all of the country requirements, such as age and length of marriage, just out of reach, they were prepared to have to wait to start their adoption journey for several years. That’s when Melanie’s friend announced that she would be adopting from a small orphanage in a West African country. After asking some questions, Melanie realized that she and Luke also met the country requirements for adopting from this country! They looked at a picture of some of the children who also lived in that orphanage, and fell in love with a little boy named Sid.
Sid is an adorable 5-year-old boy who loves Spider-Man, cars, and turtles. Melanie and Luke have been able to talk to him twice a month, and the first time they spoke to him, he said, “I love you, Mom and Dad!”. That is a moment the two of them will never forget!
Sid was badly burned as a toddler, and currently does not have use of his hands. He needs several surgeries to loosen scar tissue and allow his body to grow properly, as well as give him back the use of his hands. He also needs a family to love him and hold him through his medical journey! Melanie and Luke are so excited to meet their little guy and bring him home!
3/11/2020 — COURT PASSED; AWAITING TRAVEL DATES
We are adopting. In those three little words, there is so much meaning. They are the words that send our hearts soaring — it’s so surreal, has been SO long on our hearts, and the journey we’ve taken to this place looks nothing like we originally intended. But so it is with God.
His panoramic view has smashed our Polaroid at every turn. We can see only what is in front of us—the virtual snapshot of the life I’m living—and yet in his gracious goodness, He sees it all and is not shaken by the tidal wave of any one moment. His plan has been perfected in the waiting, and it is with great thankfulness and JOY that we find ourselves back here, in this space….waiting on His timing.
We are adopting from Eastern Europe. We plan to name this little girl Saylor – a name that means ‘rope’ or ‘tether’. Her name has become a metaphor for this entire adoption journey. Our hearts are tethered to a tiny baby living half a world away. We’re tethered by the promise of what is to come, by the permanence God has already spoken over our family and the intention with which He’s chosen us for one another. God has anchored this little girl to our very souls and she is a part of us–even now. The need is great and the families are few, and we believe she is worthy. We desire to proclaim God’s gracious goodness and intention over her precious life. She is worthy of being wanted. We have chosen to pursue this little girl as our beloved daughter with deep, loving intention.
We have four kiddos, ages 7, 5, 3, and 1 – two boys and two girls. I am a public school kindergarten teacher and my husband works for our state government. We aren’t uniquely qualified in any way to pursue an international adoption, but we love Jesus with all we’ve got and our steadfast faith is in Him alone. We believe that He will light this path as we walk forward to bring our baby girl home!
We are stepping out in bold faith and brave love. International adoption is daunting, on so many fronts. The financial implications – especially for our big and blessed family of six – are substantial. We know this will stretch us, but we also know that God is so much bigger. We know He delights in bringing orphans into their forever families, and we raise our arms to Him knowing He will make a way for us in this season. He’ll light the path, and we’ll walk it in JOY as we bring our girl home.
I always tell my three year old, as he’s running around the house at lightning speed with his eyes on the floor, “LOOK UP! Look up, so you can see where you’re going” Friends, will you look up with us? Will you fix your eyes on the One who adopted us ALL into His family as orphans, and will you help us bring this precious baby girl home?
7/7/2020 — AWAITING COURT DATE
The Breitenstein Family has met their matching grant from RODS Racing!
*** Naheeda has received a for a $2,000 Grant! ***
The Scotts are a family of 5 living in South Carolina. With 3 boys at home ages 5, 8, and 10, Dan and Abby always knew that someday they wanted to add a sweet girl into the mix. After joining Reece’s Rainbow’s Facebook group they saw a precious young girl being advocated for and knew that she was meant to be their daughter. Through pursuing this adoption they have learned more about what it means to have special needs and how to care for their soon to be daughter who has moderate to severe Cerebral Palsy. What they used to see as a disability they now see as special abilities, she is so able and the special needs community has shown them that different abilities are something to be celebrated! They hope that their adoption will inspire others to step out in faith into the unknown and care for a child that will bring so much joy and open the mind of others to how capable special needs people really are. We hope that you join us on our journey in bringing our precious and wonderful daughter home!
7/16/2020 — AWAITING TRAVEL DATES
Brandon and Jessica have been happily married for 13 years and reside in a small West Texas with their four sweet children Beckett (11), Blaire (9), Brooklynn (8), and Beau (3). They have always believed that adoption would be a part of their family story. Their family is very excited to have a new sibling and pray/talk about them on a daily basis.
The cost and process of international adoption can be intimidating but they know this is where God is calling their family and will provide. If you feel called to support them in their adoption journey your prayers and donations would be greatly cherished! Thank you for your time, consideration, and prayers as they pursue their sweet child in China.
3/13/2020 — AWAITING TRAVEL APPROVAL
Twenty years ago, Elijah and Tiffany Jackson fell in love. Two years later, they got married and built a home on the century-old family farm. They started a family, having two wonderful little boys fairly close together. Five years later they were blessed with a little girl with Down syndrome, and oh, how her brothers loved her!! It didn’t take any of them very long to realize Down syndrome was not something to fear or avoid, but something to celebrate and cherish! The thought had come to them while their little girl was still a baby that they should think about adopting a child with Down syndrome, so they checked Reece’s Rainbow here and there, but didn’t know how to take the first steps of such a big journey! So, for a time, the idea was forgotten. 10 years later, Heavenly Father made it very obvious that it was still in His plan for the Jackson’s to add to their family through adoption! With the help of a good friend, they got right to work. They are so excited and ready to have little sister in their home and to be in their family forever!
1/13/2020 — TA RECEIVED
Matching Grant through RODS Racing has been met!
Brett and Jessica met 17 years ago while attending college in upstate New York. They currently live in Maryland with their 5 biological children. Clayton (13), Ava (11), Lyla (9), Allen (4) and Pierce (2), are the loves of their lives. Brett is a mechanical engineer and works as project developer at Ameresco Inc and Jessica owns an early intervention preschool for children diagnosed with Autism. They enjoy spending time as a family going for bike rides, playing board games and spending time outside. After Pierce was born they thought their family was complete, however God had other plans. In August 2017, Brett and Jessica started considering International Adoption. After working with children with special needs for over 15 years, Jessica knew that if they decided to adopt, they would adopt a waiting child with special needs.
Brett and Jessica believe that serving those who are the most vulnerable is one of life’s biggest blessings. When you pour love and compassion into those who need it the most, your dreams will start to come true. They are working hard and praying to raise enough money to bring their child home as soon as possible. The country requires 3 trips to finalize the adoption. Thank you for your support and prayers to help bring our precious child home.
7/30/2019 — AWAITING REFERRAL
Adam and Siri Caudill enjoy life in beautiful rural WA. They are blessed with a biological daughter, Pia, born in September 2016. She is a sweet, smart and delightful girl who loves dolls as much as dinosaurs and trucks. Adam is a stay-at-home father and Siri is a veterinarian. They had both long felt the call to adopt a child, Adam having an adopted sister. Their hearts were reminded of this in an unexpected way.
They were overjoyed to become pregnant with a second child, a boy named Riku, who they lost in the second trimester of pregnancy. Riku had Down syndrome. Siri and Adam were prepared to parent a child with special needs and were devastated by this loss. As a result, they were made aware of the need for international adoption of children with special needs. They are thrilled to be in the long process of welcoming a young boy (“Myrtie” on Reece’s Rainbow) into their family from Eastern Europe. They found his profile and immediately felt drawn to him. He has spina bifida and associated hydrocephalus. Even though he is unable to walk and does not yet have a wheelchair, he does not let this hold him back. His spirit has captured their hearts. His personality is often described as sunny and he exudes a great joy for life. As every child deserves a loving home, they long to give him the love and medical care that he needs to continue to be such a happy boy.
They are deeply appreciative of any support they receive in the efforts to bring their son home.
3/3/2020 — PASSED COURT
Early in our marriage, we had the opportunity to live overseas for about a year when our two oldest girls were just babies. Upon returning to the United States, we became very aware of how much we have in terms of resources and medical care here in America. We were also able to live close to family again. With those things in mind, over the next couple months, we both felt (separately) that God was leading us to adopt a child with special needs. When Ken brought it up with me, we were surprised to see that we had both been thinking that way and started exploring different options. Through a blog, I learned about the sad reality that many children in Eastern Europe who are born with disabilities are immediately put into orphanages. These children live without the love of a family and often without adequate medical care. In 2013, we were overjoyed to bring our son with Down syndrome home from Eastern Europe. A few busy years later, we decided to adopt again, this time from Haiti. Our daughter, also with Down syndrome, came home in 2018.
In reading the Bible, it is clear that God cares very much for those who are weak and vulnerable, who cannot defend themselves. And He speaks specifically about loving and caring for children without families. Even though life is busy, we have prayed (a lot!) about the possibility of adding another child to our family and feel that God has led us to do that and has shown that He will be with us and help us. We are finally through the paperwork process and are so excited and thankful to be able to bring two children home to our family. Our hope, our joy and our purpose in life is to follow Jesus and we know that Jesus loves these kids. We’re also thankful for Reece’s Rainbow and the many people who have advocated for these children. We can’t wait to have our little ones home!
9/6/2020 — OFFICIALLY MATCHED; AWAITING COURT
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!
9/14/2020 — TRAVELING LATE SEPT
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.”
9/3/2020 — AWAITING COURT
Chipper and Kinsley met how any normal millennial couple meets these days, in the Buffalo, New York, International Airport. The budding romance continued with a generic Facebook friend request a few days later which set the stage for an entire year of not talking at all. True love can never be denied, though. In the fall of 2013, one message led to another and, one week later, the two lovebirds were talking multiple hours every day, Chipper in Baltimore and Kinsley in Charleston. Chipper did the rational thing, having seen Kinsley once before in the airport, and drove down through the night to surprise Kinsley at church in South Carolina. Four months later, wasting no time, they were married in Rockville, Maryland, and the rest is history. Movie rights to the relationship story are owned by Disney… Just kidding.
They now have 5 children and live in suburban Atlanta. Chipper works for a Cyber Security Software company while Kinsley is a homemaker and homeschools the kids. They began looking into adoption a few years prior but between becoming pregnant and a few other things it was put on hold. In September of 2019, they saw a little boy they were drawn to and decided to pursue adopting. While they were unable to bring that little boy home, they were so thankful to find a specific country they wanted to pursue adopting from.
7/29/2020 — FIRST TRIP “Virtual” in AUGUST
*** Garth has received a $2,000 Grant! ***
Danny and Rachel Suero have been married for 8 years and have 3 biological children. They always wanted to adopt and have cared about orphans and adoption advocacy for many years. They strongly hoped to grow their family through adoption, but thought it would be at least a few years away. Everything changed one day in February when Rachel decided to visit the Reece’s Rainbow site as she had often done for years. This time was different because staring back from the computer screen was little Amelie. She experienced an instant gut feeling that this was her child. She decided to pray about it, but once she shared the information with Danny, he was completely on board as well! He agreed that they should ask for more information and try to adopt this beautiful little girl.
The Sueros have been very open to the possibility of adopting a second child at the same time as Amelie. They thought that they’d ask when they arrived in her country about any available children at the same orphanage. They had no idea that just a few days after committing to Amelie, a second little one, from a different region and living in an institution would find his way into their hearts. While scrolling through the Reece’s Rainbow Facebook group, there was little Kayson, a boy who has experienced far too much neglect in his 10 years of life and who has been confined to a crib and left alone. Something powerful overcame them again, and they found themselves desperately wanting to bring him home too, even through the fears and uncertainty.
Both Amelie and Kayson have certain special needs, some profound, that Danny and Rachel had previously not been open to. They live in a country that wasn’t one they had hoped to adopt from. And adopting them will mean going out of “birth order” which is sometimes frowned upon, they followed their hearts anyway. Not only are they now open to these ages, special needs, and country, but they find themselves thrilled that this is the path they’re on and that God’s plans were so much better than what they used to think they wanted. Door after door leading to these children have opened. They believe that the financial obstacles between them and their children will be overcome as well.
Their 3 biological children can’t wait for new siblings! While it’s overwhelming to have to come up with such a large amount, they believe that through lots of fundraising, some extreme budgeting, and the generosity of others, it will happen. Although it can feel like the process can’t move quickly enough, they know that everything is in God’s hands. Just like Amelie, and then Kayson came into their life at a time and in a way that they never would’ve expected, they’re trusting that the remainder of their adoption journey will unfold in His way and in His timing as well.
9/4/2020 — AWAITING COURT
Doug and Adele met on a website, Catholicmatch.com! They were married a year later. Due to a cancer diagnosis early on before marriage, Adele did not know if she would be able to have children. Doug and Adele looked into adoption soon after marriage. Amazingly, within the first six months, a little boy was conceived, and so the adoption went on the back burner. After a second boy was born, they began the adoption process from China! Little Therese was a waiting child with “Lobster claw” syndrome and learning issues. She came along when she was two and a half years old, and joined the family! For the first six months, the Darnowskis did not realize that Therese was also hearing impaired. It was such a relief when they finally found out the diagnosis of LVAS and hearing impairment. It explained a lot! Seven more children came along after Therese. Among these were two sets of twins (back to back!) girls and then boys. God really has a sense of humour! Sometimes you really get what you pray for! They were extremely grateful for all of the amazing blessings that they knew they did not deserve. After a number of early miscarriages, and an empty place In their hearts, they attended the funeral of a little adopted boy with Down Syndrome who died of a severe heart defect, although his life expectancy far exceeded the doctor’s expectations. After talking to Max’s mother, and hearing that many of these children die alone in orphanages with no one to care at all, and after looking around the room at the funeral at all the love, and tears, and visitors and flowers offered for little Maximilian, the Darnowskis felt the tug to look into Reece’s Rainbow, and consider adoption again!
9/10/2020 — TRAVELING LATE SEPT
Nathan and Tina Scheid met in high school in their small hometown of Saranac, MI, and were married just a few years after. While they are from Michigan, Nathan’s career in the United States Marine Corps has taken them to several states that they have called home. They currently live in San Diego, California and Nathan works on Miramar Air Station. Tina has been able to stay home and take care of their children while they were little, and be there for them with their extra activities they are starting to enjoy now that they are getting older. They have three daughters, ages 14, 12. and 10, and their son Teddy, who is 6.
The Scheid’s actually found Teddy’s advocacy profile one day when they were scrolling through the list of waiting children on the Reece’s Rainbow website. They quickly started the adoption paperwork for him, and welcomed him into their family in March of 2016.
The Scheid family is so excited to announce they are adopting again. They can’t wait to bring another son into their family. Please pray for the health and safety of their new son they are in process for, and pray for the adoption process to be a smooth one.
8/4/2020 — OFFICIALLY MATCHED! AWAITING VIRTUAL TRIP 1
Emmett has received a $2000 grant!
Tim and Julie Whitten have been married for 17 years and have been blessed with three beautiful children, Mason (12), Molly (8) and Pedro (4). Tim has worked in ministry for several years and most recently works for the South Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church as a Hurricane Recovery Director helping families impacted by Hurricane Florence rebuild their homes. Julie has owned a graphic design and promotional company for almost 20 years. Her job provides flexibility to work from home and set her own hours, which allows her the ability to stay home with their children. Through her job, she can also use her artistic talents and creativity. Both Julie and Tim enjoy art, Julie enjoys painting while Tim is an accomplished potter.
The Whitten family has always had a heart for missions. By giving their lives and hearts to God, He has opened their eyes to the needs in the world and helped them move out of their comfort zone. Through this, Pedro was brought into their lives when he was 6 months old, during a mission trip to Haiti. Pedro has significant special needs and the Whittens have repeatedly watched God step into their lives meeting challenge after challenge. Pedro is well loved, enjoys life and the entire family has grown in their faith exponentially.
When the Whittens look into the precious face of Chrissie, and each of the orphaned children, they remember that God tells us not to let the world pollute our thoughts, but to remain focused on God and what He commands us to do, especially to care for orphans and widows. They find strength in the knowledge that Jesus would not be sitting on the couch, but instead be in the orphanage holding those children, His children, who do not have a person to claim them as their own. The Whittens have been blessed with two biological children and claimed one child as their own through adoption. They have experienced first hand the love of God with each child and realize that He lives and loves in the hard times. They welcome and embrace each challenge as it allows them to experience God more.
8/12/2020 — AWAITING COURT
Chrissie has received a $2,000 Grant!
Hello we are Kurt and Cyndi Petrich. We have been married four years. We have 5 beautiful children, four biological children and one that God placed in our hearts 2 years ago. We were both widowed late in life. The Lord brought us together when we both said, “yes” to a mission trip to serve special needs orphans in Eastern Europe. We met on the mission field. We fell in love with each other and the precious forgotten children. We came home from our missions’ trip, were married and have been serving these children ever since.
While on an extended missions’ trip we met a beautiful brown eyed little girl, who stole our hearts. God placed our sweet Dasha in our family in 2018. Upon our arrival home, our daughter started to pray every night in her native language, “Praise God, My God, please bring my best friend home.” Night after night she would pray the same prayer over and over again. We knew immediately God was calling us to grow our family once again. During this time, we learned about a sibling to this child. We were thrilled to find both girls on the Reece’s Rainbow list of available children. We prayed again fervently. Once again, God lead us to say, “Yes” to both children.”
Dasha has been home for over a year and the transformation we have witnessed has been nothing short of a miracle. She is loved and knows how to love. She wants her best friend and sister to become her own sisters and experience the love of a family. We wholeheartedly believe God’s Word that says, Psalm 68: 5-6 “God sets the lonely in families.”
We openly admit and profess adoption has deepened our faith and understanding of God’s deep love and affection for his children. We watched God do the miraculous during the journey of adoption with Dasha. He showed us again, again He is faithful. Our prayer is hearts would be moved to help us bring these girls home. Hebrews 10:23, “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for HE who promised is faithful.
9/5/2020 — AWAITING COURT
We are Galen & Yalonda Horst. We have been married 21 blessed years and God has touched our hearts and lives with 7 children; 4 biological children and 3 through the miracle of adoption. Our first 2 adoptions were from Guatemala and the last one was from China.
Adoption has touched our hearts and lives in a way that has changed us tremendously. We never dreamed, when we did our first 2 adoptions from Guatemala, that God would lead us to adopt a child from China who has Down Syndrome, but it has been another beautiful experience!
The transformation that Kyla has made in the past 2 years is nothing short of amazing! It was beautiful to see her personality unfold and come alive after coming to us as an unresponsive, shutdown, infant-like 2 year old. Now 2 years later she is hardly recognizable as the same child! She is so full of love, mischief, and humor!
So when another sweet little girl with Down Syndrome jumped off an advocacy page at us, we prayed fervently for an answer as to whether or not this was truly God calling us again. After much prayer, we felt God was telling us to step forward. So… we’re on our way to Asia again!
Our prayer for Kristi: “I pray that God would hold you in His arms until I can hold you in mine own!”
7/29/2020 — AWAITING TRAVEL APPROVAL
Tyler and Kylee Stef have been married for 11 years. Tyler serves as a fighter pilot in the Air Force and the family has been able to experience several areas of the country. Now their time in the Air Force is coming to an end and the Stefs will be putting down roots. Kylee has homeschooled five of their children, until a small Classical school opened up down the road from them, which four of the children now attend. Kylee is a stay at home mother, caring for the house and children.
When Tyler and Kylee were engaged, they talked about having a big family. “Wouldn’t it be great to have four kids?!” they would joke. After their fourth child was born, they thought their family was complete. However, it was after the tragic loss of their son that God started to plant the seeds of adoption. Their local pastor did a sermon on adoption as he and his wife adopted two children from the DRC. The Stefs felt a stirring and prayed about what God might have planned for them. Upon moving to a new location, the first family that Tyler and Kylee became friends with had a young daughter adopted from Thailand. Seeing this beautiful family brought adoption to life and they soon began their first adoption process.
The Stefs were made aware of waiting child lists and their hearts were drawn to these children. As they began the process of international adoption, they received a phone call from a local hospital that a baby had been born at 28 weeks and abandoned nearby. They needed a family to come hold him and asked if the Stefs would be interested. It was a crazy turn of events but God’s hand was clear as Tyler and Kylee officially adopted the premature infant three days later.
Four years later their hearts were drawn again to internationally waiting children and they began the process to adopt from China. This was just a month before China closed their doors to larger families. The Stefs were upset but spent more time in prayer to seek God’s direction. Months later they were made aware of the orphan hosting programs. Last summer they hosted two amazing sisters and during Christmas break they hosted a single boy, all from Ukraine. Tyler and Kylee learned about the great needs of orphans in Ukraine and felt called to adopt from Eastern Europe. One night, Kylee was praying for God to show her the child who would be theirs – Now Tyler, Kylee, and the rest of the kids are getting ready to welcome these special children into their family.
7/14/2020 — TRAVELING EARLY AUGUST
While in process, a different family accepted the referral for their former host son “Tristan,” leaving the Challis family unsure how they should proceed. They talked about finding another teen, but their son felt that “Tristan” is his big brother and didn’t want anyone in “Tristan’s space.” Everyone was sad, and struggled to connect to another child again.
Enter “Ian,” AKA “The Cloudbuster,” with his huge grin like a shaft of sunlight forcing the clouds aside. Since their jobs have flexible schedules, allowing for a lot of one-on-one time, both parents have experience advocating for children with special needs, and their city has a renowned Down syndrome clinic a few miles away PLUS everyone in the family feeling something special for him, the family felt confident that Ian was the right child, and were thrilled to be matched to him.
Their son is ready to be a BIG brother now – he is already sewing him toy cars to play with. Tabitha is a librarian and Henry manages a property rental office so they need (like everyone) to fundraise a lot of money on the quick, and welcome all ideas! They appreciate any advice, prayer, encouragement or support anyone can offer.
They are approved for two children and are hopeful that they will be able to pursue a match with another Reece’s Rainbow child, but are holding off on a referral until they feel confident about funding the second set of fees.
8/12/2020 — AWAITING COURT
The Challis family has met their $5000 matching grant from RODS Racing!
Larry and Angela met when Angela was still in high school and began dating several years later. Friendship blossomed into love and they married in 1993. Early on in their relationship they discussed their future plans for a family and decided that they would have at least one biological child but would also like to adopt at some point. They talked about the possibility of adopting a child with Down syndrome one day, since as a special education teacher Angela had always felt called to parent a child with special needs. Six years after getting married they had Holton, and for the next 9 years he was an only child. At that point, they realized that it was time to expand their family and they both agreed that it wasn’t important to them whether they brought any more children into the world, because there were plenty of kids who needed families and they would love them just as much whether or not they gave birth to them. In addition, they realized that there were many kids who were considered harder to place due to being older or having special needs. They wanted to provide a family for kids who may not otherwise have one. Their daughter Maili joined the family at the age of 4. She was born in China and was listed as having a congenital heart defect in addition to significant developmental delays due to hypoxia at birth. She brought a joy to their family that they had not even imagined possible, and two years later they returned to China to adopt another daughter. Callie was 6 years old at that time and only 8 months younger than Maili. She had a very rare heart condition but has thrived after having surgery. The girls quickly became inseparable and today these virtual twins are still the very best of friends. Now that the girls are almost teenagers, the Hornbuckles have decided that it is time to add to their joy once more by adopting a little boy with Down syndrome. The kids couldn’t be more excited about having a younger sibling to dote on, and Angela and Larry are ready to complete their family as they envisioned it almost 25 years ago. They feel particularly led to adopt a child with more significant medical and developmental disabilities who may have a harder time finding a family. In addition to Down Syndrome, Ethan has been diagnosed with a congenital heart defect (TOF) as well as tracheal and subglottic stenosis. He has a g tube and currently receives tube feedings.
Due to Ethan’s extensive medical needs, there will be increased medical expenses once he arrives home and they are trying to make sure that they are allowing for that in the monthly budget. Although they have the resources needed to raise this child, they do not yet have all of the resources they need to bring him home. Therefore they will have to rely on the understanding of grant selection committees and generous donors to help them come up with the final $7,000 or so they will need in order to bring this sweet boy home to his forever family in Georgia. The Hornbuckles believe that every child deserves a family regardless of their disability, and this little guy is no exception. They also believe that where God guides, He provides and they ask that you find it in your hearts to help Ethan come home to his forever family because they can’t wait to meet him!
9/8/2020 — COURT PASSED; AWAITING TRAVEL in OCTOBER