Those of us in the Down syndrome community know about the great efforts of many families to adopt children with Down syndrome from other parts of the world.
We know that in Eastern Europe, children with Down syndrome are routinely given up and placed in orphanages, only to be transferred to adult mental institutions a few years later. The survival rate for children in these institutions is so small it is staggering.
The idea of our own sweet babies, like Cora, Hailey, and Ellie awaiting this fate simply by being born with an extra chromosome in a different culture seems impossible. Picturing my own beautiful girl peering out from behind the bars of a crib without a family to love her breaks my heart.
Many of us have been supporting the adoptions of these children through donations, though pursuing adoptions, and by advocating for some of the children in need of families.
Here in Portland, I've been getting involved with local Down syndrome community, and that is where I met the Nine family. The Nines have seven children, one of whom rocks an extra chromosome and hails from Russia. Sweet Vahnya was adopted in 2011 and is such an incredible part of their family.
Now the Nines are in the process of pursuing their second adoption and plan to bring home Sebastian some time next year.
Sebastian is 2 years old and weighs only 12 pounds. He can not sit up by himself. He takes his only food through a bottle.
It is known that the orphanage where little Sebastian lives does not have great conditions, and many people are working to change that. In the meantime, this sweet boy has no family with him to protect him or to love him. His life literally depends on becoming a part of this amazing family that are so ready to welcome him home.
There are so many worthy causes. So many groups and individuals truly deserving of your hard earned donations. But your donations can truly help save a child like Sebastian's life. His actual, literal life. How often is that extra dollar you drop in a bucket or few dollars you spend on coffee actually working to save someone's life? How often can checking off one item on your Christmas wish list make such a different in someone's life?
This holiday season, if you're looking for a meaningful gift, consider donating in your loved ones' name to Sebastian's adoption, or to another deserving child on Reece's Rainbow. Donations through Reece's Rainbow are tax deductible, and are a great idea for a stocking stuffer.
Every dollar helps. Please consider donating today.
Donate to Sebastian's adoption fund through the Reece's Rainbow adoption ministry or visit the the Nine's adoption blog to read more about their journey and donate to their Chip-in to help cover costs that the Reece's Rainbow funds cannot cover.
Consider it your gift to Cora.
April 15, 2013 Update: The Nine family has plans to make their first trip abroad in their adoption process, where they will get to meet Sebastian. They are close to meeting their fundraising goal for the first trip; but this is only the beginning. I know that they can raise the money to save this child's life. Please share, if you can, or donate, if you're able.