Sunday, December 6, 2009

Fundraiser time!-- where do adoption costs come from??

Finally.  I have a few fundraisers floating around--LOL.  Obviously, adoption is an expensive endeavor.  Don't think though for one minute we are "buying" our children.  That is SUCH a misconception in the adoption world.  For those new to adoption that are reading this blog, there are fees involved each and every step of the way.  First fee is typically and application fee.  Usually just a few hundred dollars to get you started & it let's an agency know that you are actually serious and not one of the "crazies" scouring websites for kids.  Trust me, after years of advocacy work, these people do exist & waste a lot of an agency's time.  Anyhow, after the application, you'll have a fee for the homestudy.  typically, it is now running between $1500 to $2400 in various states.  Then, you have a BCIS(immigration fee).  These fees add up over time.  YOu are paying fees for services you are receiving to bring your child home.  There are many folks in the country of your future child that do a whole bunch of work behind the scenes that you don't realize.  The international fees go to pay for that.  It may seem like a lot but if they are travelling from the capital such a Sophia in Bulgaria to an outlying region, it adds up.  They have to do this several times to make sure everything is legal and everything is set to go to court before you even arrive!  That is a lot of work and as everyone else in this world, they get paid for doing a job.  Plain and simple.  Travel is another expense for sure and adds up quickly.  We reduce costs by staying at an apartment usually versus a hotel.  Warren and I are a bit savy at this by now and know where we can cut costs andwhere we can't. 

Now you can see how adoptions add up quickly.  All adoptive parents have the ability to support the children financially once they are home or they would not be approved by the homestudy.  Your financials are scrutinized very much.  The problem comes in w/ having the extra $30,000 sitting in the bank to complete the adoption.  Most don't think twice when spending that on a new car.  But someone wanting to save the lives of orphans raises some eyebrows when they need the $30K to do that.  Most families turn to fundraising or grants to help.  Grants are few and far between nowadays due to the economy.  So, we have to turn to fundraisers this go around.  Previous adoptions we have borrowed money and paid it back.  Banks are not letting you do that like they used to due to the world market.  So, we have to raise the money on our own.  We would feel comfortable if we could raise $10K to $15K to complete this adoption.  Helping us do that is very easy. 

Our first fundraiser was a yardsale/ bake sale and we netted $316. 

Second fundraiser is the donation bar on this website.  Well, that & donations coming in personally to us.  We have netted $250 from that.

Our next fundraiser is a magazine sales and it will be ongoing.  Here is the link:

It is extremely simple to use and wonderful magazines(over 650) for everyone!  Great gifts for Christmas.  We will receive 40% from any magazine sold.  Please pass this link to everyone and anyone you know.  It really will help.

4th fundraiser I'm doing is more for fun to see how far I can go to embarrass myself.  Yes, it involves a scale!  This fundraiser is called "Losing it for LOVE."  In Losing it for Love, I will do a weigh in every Friday.  People can tell me how much they would like to donate for every pound I lose.  It can be just a one time thing or wait until the end of the month.  For example, say you decide to donate $5 for every pound I lose.  I lose 5 lbs that month.  That is $25 to help bring the 3 children home and see their new mom... the healthier, skinnier version of her!  Stress adds weight and an adoption process is beyond stressful.  I need a motivator and what great motivator than children--LOL.  At my highest, I was 204.  I am currently at 195 and by next Friday, am hoping to be down to 192 or 193.  Think of it as my version of the Biggest Loser.   Love that show.  So inspirational.  My goal is to lose 40 lbs and be back to my college weight.  IRonically, I was a health and fitness specialist in college.  I know, I know, some of you are rolling on the floor laughing right now.  Get back up.  Seriously.  But, like most other mothers in America with special needs children, the children come first and somewhere along the lines we slip into the background.  To tend to three more special needs children, I have decided I need to come back up front and be a healthier mother to better help my children.  Now, some weeks, I may lose nothing and that would be to your advantage.  But the real winners will be our 10 children.  This is going to be a very, very hard task for me.  It is Christmas time and I am a self-proclaimed chocoholic.  Yes,I am.  All the Christmas parties and the fact that we will host a cookie exchange here, is enough to make you want to give up before we start.  Not on your life.  I'm ready for this challenge.  I can use all the help, encouragement, and financial support for this Losing it for Love challenge I could possibly get.  To participate, just let me know by writing  PUt in the title "Losing it for Love."  Let me know how much you'd like to donate for every pound lost & howlong you'd like to participate.  Whether just for that week or for the month.  I'll be doing this challenge for 4 months.  I will be taking digital pictures of the scale.  Before and after pics come at the end.  There is only but so much embarrassment I'll put up with--LOL.  I think this will be a fun challenge.  You will not only be helping to save 3 orphans but also be helping to change the life of someone to new health.  Any amount will be appreciated.  $1 a pound, $3 a pound to $10 a pound.  100% of all donations go directly towards the adoption of our 3 children from Bulgaria.  Umm, it will NOT go to buying chocolate--LOL.  Now, I am off to go take a walk.  Hoping in a few weeks, it will be a run. 

The above picture was this summer.  After this challenge, I will be the one going under the limbo stick & not the one holding it!

Thanks to all for your continued support.  They say it takes a village to raise a child.  It is going to take an entire village to bring these children home where they belong.  I'll put a picture in later of what the scale said this past Friday morning.  I can not slack off now as my children our involved.  Want other adoptive parents to see anything is possible.  It is possible for me to lose weight AND to raise money for the children to get home asap.  So, every Friday I will do a Flabulous to Fabulous Friday segment.  Have more to say later.  Of course.  Have a wonderful day. 

1 comment:

  1. Stephanie - I have been following your blog and this post is great! I am so glad you addressed the financial issue. I actually had my own mother ask me if we were "buying" a child. Whew! What do you even say to that? Anyway - I love your fund raising ideas! I may have to ask your permission to copy your weight loss idea! I have put on lots of weight since having 3 babies in the last 4 years! What a great way to raise money for your adoption and become healthier! By the way - we are trying to adopt a child from the Ukraine and are in the middle of our home study. Visit our blog anytime or email us! Take care! God bless!