This summer our family hosted a 12-year-old boy from Colombia named Jeremy who does not have a family of his own. Jeremy travelled with Kidsave; a nonprofit organization that helps older children find forever homes through family visits. He was one of a group of 45 children that spent 5 weeks with host families in the US this summer.
We soon discovered that Jeremy is caring, intelligent and athletic. He would like to be a civil engineer or professional soccer player when he grows up. Jeremy had a great time at soccer camp. He enjoys painting and drawing. He took art lessons and made a beautiful painting for us. He enjoyed taking guitar and drum lessons, and he also likes to play the piano.
Jeremy got along well with our family, friends and neighbors. He is very sweet and quickly made friends with several of the children in our neighborhood. He spent time with them at the pool, the beach, the park and the ice cream shop.
It was fun for us to take him on adventures, many of which were completely new for him. We went to many Chicago sites such as the Hancock observatory and aquarium. We took him to the golf range and indoor ice rink. We went to a Chicago Fire soccer game. We also liked having him around for our day-to-day activities. He added a lot of joy to our home. He was very well behaved and was always happy. It was a wonderful experience for Jeremy and our family.
Michael and Lisa Milani
Children growing up in orphanages — whether they be government or private ones do not get the care they need. Research proves that without individual care, attention and stimulation, children’s brains and neurological systems do not develop normally. They develop learning disabilities, have growth delays and diminished intellectual capacities. Additionally, many struggle with the psychological trauma of losing their parents and the neglect or abuse that led to that horrible end.
Children in orphanages and foster care are overlooked and forgotten. In situations where children are adopted — either internationally or domestically — the older kids are frequently not considered.
Recovery is possible.
The sooner the better.
With family support, most of these children can lead happy, productive lives. Many will have some lasting damage — learning challenges, emotional problems — but with the help of patient, compassionate parents they can learn and succeed.
They have tremendous ability to be contributing members of society.
This is the work of Kidsave — to create change so forgotten orphanage and foster kids are found — and connected to families and caring adults.
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