Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Stavropol Orphanage pics

Been coming across some old photos as I'm digging through files and such.  You have to do this when you are looking for photos of your family & home to show to Bulgaria.  In every homestudy & dossier you do no matter the country.  Anyhow, thought I'd share some of the old ones from Stavropol that I came across.  Hope you enjoy going down memory lane.  I just did a post on Yana & Alex w/ Stavropol so figured this fits right in w/ it.  Here goes.

This is a picture of Yana's school class the year we hosted her...2003.  She was 7 years old that school year.  She is on the back row, 3rd from the left.  In true Russian fashion, not many smiles.  I framed & matted it when we got home otherwise, it would have been destroyed.  

This is the only picture Yana has of her biological sister.  We tried to bring her home as well but it was to no avail.  Years ago, we heard her life was that of a typical orphan when they leave the orphanage...desolate, no hope, no future.  It hurts because you can see Yana in her eyes.  We do not know definitively what happened to her.  She was older than Yana by a few years. We'll always wonder the what if, but more than that, Yana will always wonder what became of her sister.  this is why job skills and after orphanage programs are vital to the survival of those left behind.  

This was a very, very tight group of girls in Stavropol.  This was Yana's group back in 2004 when we came to get her.  They did look out for each other.  It was amazing the one holding Yana, Svetlana, taught herself English.  She was phenominal!  A sweetheart.  She was the "mother" of the group for sure.  See, Yana was only the 8th child ever adopted out of that orphanage in the last 30 years.  That's what the director had told us. I was stunned b/c of the great # adopted from Alex's orphanage.  But, it was the younger home.  Svetlana looked at Warren and I & said "you give us hope."  Hope that someone does care and does want us.  You have no idea how hard it is to hold it together when the kids express that to you.  

Another shot of the girls.  Yana is in the pink.  Just really saddens me that very few of us want the older children.  Shoot, I know I was one of those parents in the beginning.  I had set off on that adoption journey for a child as young as possible.  Our youngest ever adopted was Alex at 3yo, almost 4yo.  So,young was never in the cards for us.  Hence, I'll wait for the babies when I get grandkids.  LOL.  Meantime, these older children have a lot to offer and I do hope some of you consider older child adoption.  It's not easy but there are so many good surprises to it as well. 

This was Alex's group.  Some of them got adopted, some did not.  Alex is the little blondie in the light blue shirt.  Mostly boys in his group.

The rest of his group.  It's sad as all they want to do is touch you when you go by.  They were craving that love and affection from another human being.  It's been 6 years since we brought Yana and Alex home and I still have not forgotten the kids left behind.  

Alex eating at his orphanage.  Not the same as family conversation at the dinner table, is it?  these kids are trained very young to be self-sufficient.  

Alex is the little boy looking over the blue rail.  Isn't he a doll?!  I love it when other parents go to the orphanages your children are at and snap a few pictures.  It is priceless.  I'll have more pictures from this orphanage & Yana's .  Just thought it would be neat to share a blast from the past since I just did Yana and Alex's anniversary update. 

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