Dan with his new family on Easter.
Big sister Ruth (13), Big brother Benja (9), and Julie (Dan's Mommy)
Father to the fatherless, defender of widows — this is God, whose dwelling is holy. God places the lonely in families.
While the blog world is saturated with neat stories of international adoption in Uganda, I feel it is important that we realize that there are Ugandan families who have adopted, and who are willing to adopt. It can be just as beautiful, inspiring and powerful to hear about a Ugandan child being adopted into a Ugandan forever family. We just don't get to hear these stories very often.
Dan has been living with his new family for just a little under a month now. The meeting with Probation went without too much hassle. I helped Julie fill out 3 original copies of the foster papers, and 3 original copies of the care orders. This is something you definitely want to have if you are currently considering fostering/adopting within Uganda. Julie's foster papers for Dan are currently in process with the Jinja courts. The probation officer gave us approval for Dan to begin living with Julie.
Dan has adjusted so unbelievably well in his new family. He loves playing with his big brother. He calls Julie "Mommy". His big sister Ruth looks out for him, and loves having him home as well. Dan is still part of sponsorship. Schools in Jinja are expensive, and Julie, a single Mother is already paying school fees for two children. Dan has been enrolled in school at Victoria Baptist Nursery School. He starts school next term, on May 23rd.
I can not tell you how encouraged I am by Julie and the way she emulates the love of Christ. Her willingness to open her home to children who need a Mom is so beautiful. I told her the other night that she is easily one of the most humble, and gentle people I have ever met. She has become one of my heroes in the short 6 weeks I've known her, and I hope to one day be half the woman she is.
Adoption is so natural within Ugandan culture. There are so many children being raised by extended family members. The majority of the children in our sponsorship program will grow up knowing Aunts, Uncles, or Grandparents as their primary caregivers. While it may not be as common for a Ugandan to walk into an orphanage and adopt, from what we have seen, adoption is so ingrained in the communities and families we have been working in.
My point in telling you all this, is that families like Julie's exist here in Uganda. Adoption is beautiful, it's so a part of God's heart. Our hope is that it is seen not only as an international option, but also a domestic one as well.