Wednesday, February 19, 2014

International adoption nightmare, with hope finally on the horizon

Little Diana has been waiting six years in an orphanage in Kyrgyzstan. She was matched with my dear friend Suzanne for adoption when she was five weeks old. 

Way back then, in 2008, Suzanne flew to Kyrgyzstan and fell in love with Diana. But then before Suzanne could bring her home, all Kyrgyz international adoptions were put on hold, leaving Diana, and 64 other Kyrgyz orphans, in limbo. Two of the children have since died. And over the years, some of the families have moved on to less arduous adoption situations.

But my friend Suzanne is not a giving-up kind of person. In fact, she is heroic. She has traveled to Bishtek multiple times to see Diana. She has traveled to Washington DC and lobbied U.S. Congress. She produced a heartrending video that was translated into Russian to lobby the Kyrgyz public and legislators to help these waiting children. 

As time has dragged on and Diana has grown from a baby into a toddler into a young girl, Suzanne has taken classes on the issues involved in adopting an older child. She's learned to speak some Russian. Adoptions briefly reopened and a few parents were able to bring their children home in 2012, but they closed again before Diana's case could be brought before the courts and finalized. 

There are 18 children still waiting, growing up in an orphanage instead of with the American families who have come to love them. Diana is one of them. And Suzanne has never given up on her, even as Diana has grown from a newborn baby into a school-age girl.

Diana and Suzanne. Per adoption protocols, Diana's face is not shown.

Now, again, Kyrgyzstan has re-opened their intercountry adoption program. It is Diana's chance to finally come home. My friend is busy redoing her adoption dossier, signing on with yet another adoption agency, and completing all of the documentation necessary.  She is planning to travel to Kyrgyzstan to spend the 6-8 weeks the finalization process will take visiting Diana and helping her adjust to the upcoming transition. She will be traveling with the three-year-old she has adopted domestically while waiting for Diana. 

My friend Suzanne is amazing. But the cost of her six year journey is staggering. She has spent thousands upon thousands of dollars trying to get Diana out of that orphanage and home with her family. She is now working to raise money for her upcoming trip.  And she could really use your help. With the assistance of many friends, she's created a project called Kwylting to Kyrgyzstan to raise money for her and her daughter's travel to Kyrgyzstan. For every $25 donation Suzanne receives, she is giving a raffle ticket to win one of the numerous beautiful quilts that are being handmade for this most meaningful project (see a sampling below). Will and I will be donating ourselves, of course. And Will and I also pledge to match 100% of any donations made through this blog (just say that Mo sent you). All proceeds go to Suzanne's travel costs, and should she exceed her fundraising goal of $10,000, Suzanne plans to donate all remaining funds to the other 17 waiting families.

Please click here to go to Suzanne's fundraising page or click here to see her project's facebook page to view the incredibly beautiful quilts that are in the process of being made.

Can you help Diana come home by donating and spreading the word? After waiting six years in an orphanage, it is so past time for this beautiful young girl to finally join her family.


the beginnings of a beautiful, colorful quilt in Diana's honor

another quilt in progress, this one monochrome

yet another gorgeous creation on the way - this one a baby/toddler quilt 

the beginnings of something beautiful

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  1. Wow. That is amazing dedication. I hope Diana is finally able to bring that little girl home.

  2. S., Thanks. And thanks for your generosity.

  3. Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful story. I'll be glad to help bring Diana home and I will keep this family in my prayers. It is just beautiful what you are doing to help! I shared this story on my blog :-)

  4. Amber - thank you so much for donating and for spreading the word on your blog!


  5. Wow. Donated last night.

  6. Kharini - Thank you!! Be sure to let Suzanne know you've come from this blog so that I can match your donation!

  7. Oh, I just put my name in, we gave $40

  8. kharini - thank you again !!

  9. I've been following this story since you first posted about it Mo and I'm so happy to hear that this beautiful family will finally be united. Happy to donate!

  10. OcGal - Thank you! From me, from Suzanne, from Diana. You rock!



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