Everyone can care for orphans; follow us in 2017 and discover the many ways to get involved.
The idea of caring for orphans is incredibly daunting and often overwhelming.
Caring for orphans.
What does it exactly mean?
As a Westerner, 5 years ago if you would have asked me what it meant to care for orphans I probably would have answered something like, ‘Well it means you adopt.’ But over the years, as we’ve dug deeper into and investigated a lot into those two giant words, Orphan Care, I’ve come to realize that there are numerous ways for one to care for orphans.
Let me take you on a brief evolution of The Archibald Project. I’ll spare you the details of how and why we began, but if you’re interested, (it is my favorite story [besides sharing how my husband and I ended up together]) you can read the full story here.
After we documented our first adoption in 2011 and saw the power of media and storytelling to get another orphan adopted, we felt called to use our art to inspire more people to adopt. We began using all of our free time traveling the world and documenting international adoptions and thought that the more adoptions we documented, the more people would be inspired to adopt!
And then we went to Uganda.
In Uganda we learned that a large percentage of children living in orphanages were not orphans at all. They had one or both living parent(s) and more often than not, those parents wanted their children. They did not want to place their child in an orphanage nor want to place their child for adoption. But often times, because of extreme poverty, families in developing countries, like Uganda, are torn apart and children are placed in orphanages.
Our minds were blown.
We then met person after person who had stories of being matched with a child for adoption and later found out that their ‘child’ had living parents and had been tricked or manipulated into signing their rights away from their children.
Or parents believed that the only way to give their child a future was to send them to the west through adoption. Our hearts were broken and we felt defeated. But then we learned that there are thousands of organizations out there working to empower and equip vulnerable children and families. And we realized, right there on the red soil of Uganda, that orphan care goes beyond adoption and we wanted the world to know!
Next we traveled to Romania where children are not allowed to be adopted by non-Romanian citizens but the institutions are overflowing with children who desperately need families. So how do you help? It’s not always possible or healthy/safe for a child to be resettled with their biological family, so what do you do? How do you care for these orphans, especially when adoption isn’t an option?
And then we went to India, and China and the U.S. and we realized that there are so many reasons why children are orphaned and so many ways to pour into and build up these love seeking humans.
But why are more people not involved? Why aren’t more people helping?
We believe at our core, that people want to help, that people desire to extend love and safety to children. We believe in our fellow man. We believe that people do not know the issues OR where to help.
That is why we are shifting gears this year.
In 2017 and beyond we will be tackling core topics of unique ways to care for orphaned and vulnerable children. Throughout the next 2 weeks we will be releasing the 6 topics that The Archibald Project will investigate, educate on and expose the world to in the year of 2017. We believe that everyone can find a way to care for orphans.
There will always be orphans, but it doesn’t have to be a crisis. We need a mass amount of people to care for orphaned and vulnerable children so that, together, we can end the orphan crisis… So we’re starting a movement.
This is the movement. It’s starting now.