Help Create Families for HIV+ Children

ABBA Fund is excited to announce our partnership with Project HOPEFUL!

Through this partnership Project HOPEFUL is now able to provide interest free loans and matching grants to families that choose to adopt children with HIV/AIDS and severe special needs.

Carolyn Twietmeyer, Founder/Executive Director of Project HOPEFUL writes:

We constantly work to eliminate additional stress from our families and finances can tend to be one of the most stressful parts of adoption. We don’t want the joy of this process to be scarred with worry. Families are required to pay anywhere between $20,000-$40,000 to bring these children into their families.

Please join us to help these awesome families bring home their children. There are doers and there are senders, adoption may not be for you, but PLEASE consider coming alongside of families that are working to bring their children home from across the world. Be a part of the MIRACLE of adoption….Create families…be a part of what TRULY saves the lives of the most vulnerable children.

Project HOPEFUL has set a goal to raise $10,000 by September 18.

You can be a part of this by making a tax-deductible donation to the Project HOPEFUL ABBA Fund here.
(When donating please fill in the ‘Partnership Fund Designation’ box or include a note. 100% of donations go to help families adopting HIV+ children)

For more information on Project HOPEFUL & HIV+ adoption visit the Project HOPEFUL website.

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Is Adoption the Answer to HIV/AIDS in Africa?

Melissa Fay Green answers this question in her book There is No Me Without You:

“Adoption is not the answer to HIV/AIDS in Africa. Adoption rescues few. Yet, adoption illustrates by example: these few once-loved children – who lost their parents to preventable diseases – have been offered a second chance at family life in foreign countries; like young ambassadors, they instruct us. From them, we gain impressions about what their age-mates must be like, the ones living and dying by the millions, without parents, in the cities and villages of Africa. For every orphan turning up in a northern-hemisphere household – winning the spelling bee, winning the cross-country race, joining the Boy Scouts, learning to rollerblade, playing the trumpet or the violin – ten thousand African children remain behind alone.” pp. 24-25

Haregewoin Teferra: Orphans Hero

there-is-no-me-without-youThis week a true hero to the orphans of Africa passed away.

After the loss of her husband and daughter, Haregewoin Teferra, turned her home in Ethiopia into an orphanage for AIDS orphans and began facilitating adoptions to homes all over the world. She passed away of natural causes in her home on Tuesday. Her story is told by author Melissa Fay Green in the book There Is No Me Without You.

In honor of her life and the continuing need for the care of millions of orphans I want to share some quotes from the book over the next week.

Here is the first highlighting the sheer magnitude of the orphan crisis in Africa where close to 12 million children are orphaned as a result of HIV/AIDS (that’s just Africa!). Melissa Fay Green writes:

“Who was going to raise twelve million children?

That’s what I suddenly wanted to know.

“Who was teaching twelve million children how to swim?

Who was signing twelve million permission slips for school field trips?

Who packed twelve million school lunches?

Who cheered at twelve million soccer games? (That sounded like our weekends.)

Who was going to buy twelve million pairs of sneakers that light up when you jump? Backpacks? Toothbrushes? Twelve million pairs of socks? Who will tell twelve million bedtime stories?

Who will quiz twelve million children on Thursday nights for their Friday morning spelling tests?

Twelve million trips to the dentist?

Twelve million birthday parties?

Who will wake in the night in response to eighteen million nightmares?

Who will offer grief counseling to twelve, fifteen, eighteen, thirty-six million children?

Who will help them avoid lives of servitude or prostitution?

Who will pass on to them the traditions of culture and religion, of history and government, of craft and profession?

Who will help them grow up, choose the right person to marry, find work, and learn to parent their own children?

Well, as it turns out, no one. Or very few. There aren’t enough adults to go around. Athough in the Western industrialized states HIV/AIDS has become a chronic condition rather than a death sentance, in Africa a generation of parents, teachers, principals, physicians, nurses, professors, spiritual leaders, musicians, poets, bureaucrats, coaches, farmers, bankers, and business owners are being erased.” pp. 22-23

Adopting HIV

It goes without saying on a blog like this that one of the ways we can make a difference when it comes to AIDS is through adoption.

But, in particular I want to highlight those children who are HIV positive and those adopting them.

My wife and I watched the video below the other week (it will open in a separate window) and have been burdened ever since. Watching this I could not help but thank God for these families and think of Christ’s call to His church to love the “least of these”. Truly, in our world, those living with AIDS have been relegated to the farthest margins of society (and adoption).

Carolyn
Twietmeyer called her husband at work one day and said she found the
children they were supposed to adopt, and one of them is HIV positive.
Kiel Twietmeyer didn’t really know how to respond. After about two
weeks of contemplation the couple decided they had to go to Ethiopia to
adopt the three siblings orphaned by AIDS. Before leaving to come home
to the U.S., Carolyn took her son to visit his friends at the
orphanage. It was during this visit that she met Selah, also orphaned
by AIDS and living with stage four AIDS. Today, as the newest
Twietmeyer child, Selah’s health has significantly improved with the
help of antiretroviral drugs, a dose of hope, and lots of love from a
blended family.

The idea of
adopting a child with HIV isn’t rare. Margaret Fleming, founder of
Adoption Link and Chances By Choice, an adoption agency for HIV/AIDS
orphans, says there are many parents desiring to adopt a child with
HIV. Today with the advancement of antiretroviral medications the
lifespan of a child living with HIV has greatly increased. Mary Austin,
an RN and adoption advocate with the agency says the virus is often
times more manageable than diabetes. Margaret has adopted three
children with HIV and Mary has adopted one child with HIV.

The
United Nations reports there are 14 million AIDS orphans worldwide. 22
million people have died from AIDS with 74% of that population living
in sub-Saharan Africa.

Visit Project HOPEFUL: www.projecthopeful.org

Visit Adoption Link: www.adoption-link.org