Are boys easier to raise than girls? Sarah S. wasn’t sure, but when she and her husband, John, decided to adopt again from China, they chose a boy. The S. family already included four daughters, all adopted from China. After almost a month of discussion with Agape Adoptions and each other, Sarah and John stepped forward to adopt a little boy they named Joel. “John’s friends all assured him that boys were easier to raise than girls,” says Sarah, “especially during the teen years.” Whatever the future held for Sarah and John, they were sure Joel belonged in their family.
Sarah describes Joel Minyuan as a smart, kind, musically inclined little man. Joel had been diagnosed with Intestinal Lymphangectasia, and when he first came home he walked very slowly, an adjustment for his fast-moving, fun-loving family. Joel was six years old when he entered the S. family, having been abandoned at age three; and Sarah worried that he would have trouble attaching to his new family. As time passed and Joel settled into his new life, Sarah’s worries melted away as she saw Joel develop deep connections with his family and gain a new lightness in his step as his own fears began to subside. Soon, Joel was teasing his sisters and chasing them too!
Today, Joel fits so well into his family that it’s hard to think of a time when he wasn’t with them. A good-natured boy, Joel loves to play with and bother his sisters; and he enjoys basking in the glow of being a “mama’s boy.” Has Joel been easier to raise than his sisters? Sarah says, “Everyone really ought to have several girls and boys – then they’d see!” For the S. family, raising a boy is simply a different kind of wonderful.
Agape Adoptions prizes the relationships we have developed with orphanages over the years. The colleagues we work with around the world are highly dedicated, caring individuals who advocate tirelessly for the precious children in their care. This past month, we have been blessed to begin a relationship with another One-to-One orphanage in Guangdong, China, where our agency has the privilege of advocating for the children in that institution. (We also maintain a One-to-One relationship with an orphanage in Yunnan, China.)
Our One-to-One relationship with orphanages is unique. We not only work to match their children with forever families, but we also commit to supporting the care of the children who wait. It is our goal to help improve the lives of these children as they wait to be placed in families who will embrace them with unconditional love.
The relationships we have developed with these orphanages allow us to bless these children in very tangible ways. One of the orphanages received a washer and dryer from Agape Adoptions. We also have provided needed medication for a child with a severe skin condition. The medication is expensive and not easily accessible in the area in which she lives.
Unlike other orphanage relationships where families might wait for months for updated information, One-to-One partnerships allow us to communicate much more frequently with the orphanage staff. Waiting families can hear more frequently about their child, and our staff at Agape Adoptions can better understand their children and their needs.
Agape Adoptions celebrates this new One-to-One partnership. With it comes the awesome privilege of advocating for beautiful children who are waiting for homes to welcome them. Our One-to-One partnerships also bring with them tremendous responsibility. Each file is a child, a life waiting to flourish. It is our hope and prayer that each of these children finds his or her place in the arms of a loving family.