My wife and I became aware of the terribly concerning situation of orphans in Ukraine through our church. Our biological children were young adults, so we decided to host a 14 year old boy from Ukraine during the summer four years ago. He was an amazing boy, and we fell in love with him. We later found out that he had a 16 year old sister that was still in the orphanage only because of him. Normally, children age out of the orphanage at age 16. After his summer trip in our home, we decided to adopt them both and began working with Open Door Adoption Agency. Olga Klatt, who spoke their language, was our angel during this process and helped us communicate by telephone with the children while we were home doing the paperwork.
We will never forget the day that the children agreed to become part of our family. They kept saying, “They want to adopt us? They want to adopt us?” They couldn’t believe it, and were also very concerned about what our other children would think. Our college-aged daughter, surprised them on our second trip to Ukraine, and made another lifetime memory. We took a total of three trips to Ukraine to complete the adoption process and without the help of Open Door Adoption Agency, it never would have happened. They arranged for a fantastic facilitator in Ukraine, that looked after every piece of paper, and every step in the process.
The children are now fluent in English, and are part of our family. Because they were adopted together, they were able to continue to speak their native language and keep a close relationship.
Our new daughter graduated from high school and is now in culinary school.
Our adopted son will graduate from high school in May and will start aviation mechanic school in July. They are well on their way to a successful, independent life they would never have known otherwise. I’m not even sure they are aware of the fact that most orphans in Ukraine never live past the age of 25.
We are glad that they took the courageous decision to become part of our family!
Since our beginnings, An Open Door has always felt a strong call to provide orphan children with loving, Christian homes.
There are more than 153 million children in the world who have lost at least one parent, and there 8 million children living in orphanages -- not counting those living on the streets or trafficked as slaves. Every year, there are also thousands of birth parents who face the incredibly hard decision to place their child with the best family possible. What a humbling privilege it is to be there for these children and families.
Since 1987, An Open Door Adoption Agency, Inc. has placed over 2,100 children. These include 1,400+ children from the state of Georgia and 700+ international orphans. Each of these precious lives represents many more people touched by adoption -- from the birth parents to the adoptive couple to the children themselves. What a great privilege it is to be there for them to complete their desire for a family.