Two Minute View

Sarah DeGarmo has 12 brothers and sisters, 11 of whom joined her family through adoption. Here, Sarah shares about her journey to find God’s 30-before-30 bucket list for her life, and how she and her husband, Leighton, began their own adoption journey to their third child.

Sarah and her husband, Leighton, with their 4-year-old son, Wyatt, and 6-year-old, Levi.

My husband and I are currently in the process of adopting from the Philippines. While we may have just started our adoption journey, the seed of adoption was planted for me over 20 years ago when my parents returned home from the Philippines with my brother Isaac. After him followed Kim, Lancer, Josh, Gerard, Arturo, Ericko, Melvin, Cathy, Chris and Jena. I have one biological brother, Austin, making our family 13 children strong.

Back when there were only four of us kids, our family took a road trip to the Grand Canyon. I was 12 or 13 at the time and somehow Dad had convinced Austin and I that we should hike from the rim of the Grand Canyon down to the river and then back up to the rim in a day.

We were so excited!

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Divergent Series: Allegiant actress, Holt adoptee advocates for kids in need

Actress Danielle Lyn (Queen Sugar and The Divergent Series: Allegiant) is a Filipina adoptee using her platform to advocate for orphaned children and kids in impoverished communities. Here, she shares her hopes for 2018. 

We embark into a New Year, another holiday season come and gone. Festivities fading with the Christmas tree adorned in lights and memories captured in the ornaments we care for year after year. As we pack away the decorations, there is quiet again, where just days ago the sounds of family and friends filled our homes. Continue reading “Divergent Series: Allegiant actress, Holt adoptee advocates for kids in need”

What I Have Learned

Adoptive mom Karen Barnes shares what she has learned over the years as she and her husband, Mike, have welcomed 11 older children into their family. 

I have to smile when asked what I have learned as a parent after adopting 11 older children.  When Mike and I began our adoption journey 20 years ago, we definitely did not know where it would lead us. Here we are in our 50s, a time when most people are slowing down a bit, yet our lives are a blur of perfecting school lunches, meal planning for at least 10 every day and realizing that having seven kids in high school at the same time is a unique situation. Our house is crazy busy, full of life and heartfelt stories. Through older child adoptions, God has taught us so many valuable life lessons. Continue reading “What I Have Learned”

The Story Behind the Photo: 86 and Counting

collage-86-3

At the beginning of November, to kick off National Adoption Month, we shared a collage of all the children on our waiting child photolisting — just a small glimpse of the hundreds of children who we are seeking families for at any given time. We hoped it would kindle a passion in our supporters to help advocate for children who need loving families of their own. And it did!

You shared our waiting child stories. You reposted our advocacy blogs. You helped us tell the story behind each and every photo that we featured on social media during National Adoption Month.

The photo above represents the number of children from our photolisting that we have — thanks in part to your advocacy — matched with families so far in 2016. The black and white blocks represent the children who now are, or soon will be, part of a loving and secure family. The ones in color represent the children who we still need your help advocating for.

In total this year, Holt has matched 86 children from the photolisting — and another 200+ directly with a family! This is something to celebrate!

But we seek a world where every child has a loving and secure home. And until that day comes, we intend to keep working hard to advocate for the children left behind — and we ask you to join us.

One of the best ways that you can support our advocacy efforts is through sharing the stories we post about waiting children. That can be anything from pressing “like” or “share” on Facebook to leading an informational meeting in your community. Creativity is encouraged and we look forward to hearing what you come up with!

Thank you again for your heart and compassion for children who need families. Allied with you, we can achieve anything!
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We urgently need families for children in the Philippines

philippines-apw--Header-600x575Have you considered adopting from the Philippines?

This program is small, stable and predictable — and in urgent need of families for children. This program is a great fit for:

Younger couples, married for at least three years, ages 27-45, with less than three children.
Families strong in their Christian or Catholic faith. A 5-year church attendance letter is required.
Families who are open to a child of either gender.
Single applicants open to a child age 6+.
Families open to children ages 2-5 with minor special needs.
Families open to older children, siblings or children with more profound special needs.

Does this sound like your family? If so, we’re excited to hear from you!

Email Holt’s adoption counselor, Emily Lund, at emilyl@holtinternational.org. You can reach her by phone at 541-687-2202.

Click here to request a free packet of information about adoption.

Click here to apply now!

Or learn more about Holt’s Philippines adoption program by exploring online. CLICK HERE.

These Brothers Need a Family

In May 2015, four Holt ambassadors traveled to the Philippines to get to know a special group of children — all of them older, many of them in sibling groups. Five years ago, Holt began participating in this special adoption program as a way to increase home-finding efforts for older children and sibling groups in the Philippines. The ambassadors spend a week bonding with the children then return to the U.S. to help the children find loving families. Below, Holt adoptive parent Larry Vollmer shares about a sibling group of two boys he met while serving as an ambassador on last year’s trip — boys for whom we are still seeking a family!!

Have you ever been totally surprised by an event or circumstance so much that you can’t stop thinking about it? I have lost count of how many times I think back about my recent trip to the Philippines as a member of the Holt ambassador team. Truly, a life-changing experience for me. Hopefully, it will also be a life-changing event for these wonderful children.

Brothers
Andy and Mike sit beside other children on this year’s ambassador trip.

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Philippines Ambassadors Update: Now Seeking Families for 14 Children

Fourteen beautiful children from the Philippines are waiting for families!

In May, four Holt ambassadors traveled to the Philippines to get to know these children — all of them older, many of them in sibling groups. Four years ago, Holt began participating in this special adoption program as a way to increase home-finding efforts for older children and sibling groups in the Philippines. The ambassadors spend a week bonding with the children then return to the U.S. to help the children find loving families.

“Our outreach was to meet several sibling groups of older children,” writes Larry Vollmer, one of this year’s Holt ambassadors and an adoptive parent from McMinnville, Oregon. “In addition to meeting these children, we [would] interact and learn their story so we can come back and advocate for an eventual placement in their forever home. Sounds quite simple, and the process actually was, but what made this experience so meaningful is these children buried themselves deeply into our hearts.”

Ambassadors Continue reading “Philippines Ambassadors Update: Now Seeking Families for 14 Children”

Growing Together

A story recently published in The Catholic Spirit, the official newspaper of the Diocese of Metuchen, features one Holt adoptive father who helped advocate for older children in the Philippines during last year’s Philippines Ambassador Program.

Growing Together

Couple advocate adoption after enriching experiences

By Chris Donahue

TEWKSBURY, N.J. — Last fall, Holt, a Christian-based international organization that facilitates adoption of children from 11 countries, needed help. Tony Formica was one individual who decided to become an ambassador for Holt, which had helped him become a father. Thirteen years earlier, the member of Our Lady of Lourdes Parish, Whitehouse Station, together with his wife, Caroline, had adopted his first child, Lia, through Holt. Then, through the organization, the Formicas adopted Joe, 11, Lucy, 7, and Anthony, 6 and on Jan. 18 they welcomed Maria.

All of the children were born in different cities or regions in China. The first three were adopted before their second birthday; Anthony was three and Maria, four.

Tony Formica and his wife, Caroline, sit with their children, from left, Anthony, Lia, Lucy and Joe in their home in Tewksbury, N.J. Another daughter was adopted by the family Jan. 18.

 

 

Continue reading “Growing Together”