Adoptive parents give back

This week’s Christian Science Monitor includes an inspiring story about some adoptive parents who were touched by the poverty they saw in Guatemala, and who did something about it:

“We felt good at first, because we felt like we had made a difference,” says Ms. Downie, mother to a 2-year-old adopted Guatemalan, Sofia. “But then we get back to all these people who still need help, and you realize that what we’re doing just isn’t enough, and can never be enough. I’ll never be able to give enough because there’s no way to put a value on children and what they mean to a family.”

Downie, of Roanoke, Va., is one of some 25 volunteers from across the United States who spent one week last month in Panajachel, Guatemala, “honoring” their adopted children by working with Mayan Families, a small nonprofit organization serving indigenous populations in the Lake Atitlan region in the highlands of Guatemala.

What started as a simple service trip for a handful of women who had bonded as they all went through the Guatemalan adoption process at the same time has snowballed into Helping Mayan Families, an effort that raised more than $30,000 worth of supplies to help provide free medical and veterinary clinics, Christmas baskets of food, and toys, clothes, and shoes to 1,000 poor indigenous families.

. . .

All of us moms are here for the same reason,” said Hryniewicz, searching through piles of donated shoes to find a pair for a boy whose old shoes were so tight his mother couldn’t pry them off his squished toes. “There’s no way to say thank you for the sacrifice they made in giving up their children, so if you can’t say thank you to the birth parent, you say it to their cousins and friends and community.”

Read it all here.

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