There are an estimated 8 million children around the world living in institutional care and more than 44,000 children in foster care here in the United States. In many cases, these children remain in these care settings until they age out, often with no support. Older kids face the hardest battle to find a forever family, each day getting closer to an uncertain future on their own.
Kidsave International uses a Family Visit Model to help older children find a family to adopt them. There are programs in the United States, Colombia, Russia, and Ukraine that seek to help children reunite with their families when possible or seek permanent adoption.
A group of 24 older orphans arrived earlier this month in New York from Colombia, to spend three weeks with host families in the area, as part of the Kidsave Winter Miracles program. Kidsave Program Manager, Madeline Trachtenberg, said, “Kidsave advocates for older kids in foster care, ages 9 -15. Some are living in foster homes, and some are living in institutions throughout Colombia. They are in care due to neglect and abuse and have no prospective family in their home country. Every child in the program wants to be adopted.”
Joyce Sun, a Bloomfield resident, is hosting a 12-year-old child this month. Earlier this month she said, “For a long time now, we have wanted to open our home to a child in need of a family. When we learned about Kidsave and its longstanding hosting program connecting families here with older kids in overseas orphanages in need of families, we didn’t hesitate to find out more about how we could participate. We can’t wait to meet our host child! Even before the kids arrive from Colombia on December 4th, we have been amazed by the warm support offered by Kidsave and the Kidsave community of families who have hosted and/or adopted before us.”
Due to the pandemic, it’s even more difficult to connect the children with local families who may want to adopt them. An in-person hosting event could not be held, so interested families can meet the children virtually.
To find out how you can meet a child visiting from Colombia, or to explore the possibility of hosting a child during a future Summer or Winter Miracles program, visit the Kidsave website. You can also read in the Kids Galleries.