The annual journey has begun to collect sponsor letters and take new photos of all the HOPE children. This year it has been much more entertaining with the three college students from the US accompanying me on each trip to all the different schools. This also gives us an opportunity to check up on all the children’s report books and see how they are doing in their classes. We also find out from these trips which children have changed schools so that we can keep our HOPE records up-to-date.
The HOPE children are often very transient because they are usually being cared for by a relative. When that relative is no longer able to keep them, they will be moved to live with another relative, often a long distance away. We try our very best to follow the children to their new schools and continue paying school fees, but sometimes this is just not possible. Some will move without informing us of their new destination and others move to very remote areas where we are not able to travel on a regular basis. For these reasons, sponsors may have multiple children throughout their sponsorship experience. This is good news because it means even more children have been prayed for and cared for over the years!
So far, we have traveled to Tsvingwe Primary and Secondary Schools, Vumbunu Primary and Secondary Schools and St. James Primary and Secondary Schools. About 75% of our children attend these schools, so now the hard part will begin of tracking down the other 25% that attend multiple schools all over Zimbabwe!
Grace and Abby are now 21 months old. It is hard to believe how fast they are growing. They can now brush their teeth, eat on their own (although sometimes more ends up on the floor than in their mouths!), and love playing with other children from Fairfield and their church. We have had a visit from our Social Welfare officer this past month who has already filed the first set of paperwork for me to be allowed to adopt as a foreigner. After he receives the approval letter, he will get my references and set a court date! He is estimating the Zimbabwean side of the adoption will be completed by the end of October 2012. That is also the time my visa expires, but hopefully I will receive an extension that will last a year. Please be in prayer that everything happens in God’s timing and no obstacles will be allowed to get in the way.
Janine, Abby and Grace