What a crazy couple of weeks it has been...
since we returned from Congo! So where do we start? As we are sure you are all aware, the DGM has suspended issuing exit visas to adopting families. What appeared to be catastrophic at first, now appears to be a "speed bump" and we hope this issue will be resolved very soon (more on this later in this blog).
Regarding things we can control, we are so excited to announce we have secured a home for children in the Bandundu Region. This house, to you or I, may appear to be ordinary. To the orphaned children (and EAC representatives) this home is a God send. It has doors, windows, indoor plumbing, and plenty of bedrooms.
In addition to providing a home, EAC is also assisting children, who are older than 3 years, to attend school! Our new social worker arrived in region and during his first week he was greeted with many children suffering from Measles. His first week was spent escorting 14 children back and forth from the hospital for evaluations and treatments. We are pleased to announce the children responded well to treatment and all are well now. For those of you with children from this region, you should feel blessed they have a really nice home to live in, an opportunity to attend school and a social worker who is extremely caring and concerned for the well being of all the children. Some of the children have passed court and will be moving to Kinshasa to stay in the foster care facility. Soon after that their families will be arriving to bring them home to the U.S.!
Here are some wonderful updated pictures of the children of the Bandundu region:
AREN'T THEY BEAUTIFUL!
In Kinshasa, the children staying at Sunshine House are doing very well at this time. Aside from a few who developed upset tummies due to Measles vaccinations, health and spirits are good! EAC had a family visit this past week and we are happy to report they took over formula, vitamins and nearly 200 lbs of clothes for the children! It is important when each family travels to take at least one or 2 suitcases full of supplies as this is the most cost effective way to deliver aid to the children. The family could not say enough wonderful things about our social worker, Linda, who is responsible for the well being of their children. Linda came to the guest house to visit them 3-4 times during their stay just to make sure things were going well. Linda visits the center at least 5 times a week and has been taking pictures of the children for all parents!
Another social worker, Daniel, has also been receiving glowing reports for his caring nature. In particular, the little girl who had broken her arm has been receiving extra attention, and then the next minute he is playing kickball with some of the older children. Daniel, a father of 4 children, is the ultimate father figure to these children - they all love him!
Both Linda and Daniel continue to do a wonderful job of updating us on each of the children in their care - the number at the center has now reached 55 children! This is how we at EAC know so much about the daily lives of your children. We care and we know you do too! We hope you enjoy the updates we have been providing.
As we mentioned earlier in this blog, the DGM has issued a suspension of exit visas from Congo. We feel truly blessed to have the in-country attorney we do as he has been on top of this situation from the beginning - and he has helped us to keep our sanity! He spearheaded weekend long meetings with 19 attorneys, involved with adoption, who are analyzing the validity of the suspension and what issues may have caused such action to be taken. He remains confident the suspension will be lifted shortly and that it should only have minor, if any, effects on any EAC adoptions. We will continue to keep you updated as we learn more.
Please keep up the prayers and patience!
Debra and Robin