We had our first board meeting! It's so great to see things continue to come together. The website is days away (Okay, that may be unrealistic. Maybe still a few weeks), and the paperwork is just about ready to send off for our not-for-profit 501(c)3 status. Is that cool or what?!? This comes just a few days before the news came out that Ethiopian adoptions will be decreasing by around 90% effective March 10. I have mixed feelings about this ruling in the sense that if there really is widespread corruption, then of course I want them to get to the bottom of it. However, there is more going on than just that according to some knowledgable sources, and regardless, my heart goes out to all those adoptive parents in the process or who would have liked to be in the process sometime in the future. There are thousands, and no doubt they are struggling beyond words. My heart also goes out to all the babies and children in Ethiopia that are in desperate circumstances and need the love of a family.
One light regarding this dark knowledge of what's to come concerns the organization that Awake and Alive will be partnering with on the ground in Ethiopia. It's called Bright Future (and no, they don't have a website yet) and we might think of it like an advanced after-school care program, kind of like the Boys and Girls Club here in the US except that they also support in HUGE ways the widows of these children. There are about 80 kids right now--most of them "half-orphans," meaning one parents has passed away, often the father. The widows receive things like health screenings, food, and education on a variety of helpful topics. We are so excited to tell people more about it, but I think I'll wait until the blog directly connected with Awake and Alive gets going. Clearly, though, there will be an even greater need with this new legislation regarding foreign adoptions to help impoverished children in Ethiopia and whoever is caring for them. We are so glad God has provided such a perfect partnership between Awake and Alive and Bright Future and we are excited about what the future holds--in this department and so many others.
Much more stuff is going on here at the Black house, but I don't want to spend all my time writing about it when the kiddos are down for a nap and I have some much-needed quiet :) I'll write again soon. Blessings to you all.
And yes, this picture was taken long after our tree should have been down :)