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October 10, 2006
               This is CSC’s motto.  And we do believe in our motto.  Kids need a family.  We do our best to be a family substitute here at CSC, but there are not too many families with 30 plus kids from babies to age 16 around, nor should there be.   Our kids need more than we can give them. They need a Mom and a Dad.  We are very careful to make sure the kids know we are Aunties and Uncles…we save that precious title of  "MOM" and "DAD" for the people that will be taking over after CSC.  It is amazing how fast our kids call their new parents "Mom" and "Dad";  usually right away.  By the time the parents arrive the kids have already been waiting a long time to call SOMEONE that. It is a precious thing to see a family made right before our eyes. We are blessed to have seen that happen over and over again.
                It’s not all that easy to get the family that our kids deserve though!  First of all, something bad had to happen in their birth family.  All of our kids come to us because of some tramatic event in their life, some events much more traumatic than others.  A newborn separated from his mother experiences some trauma,  but it is the older kids who have experienced abuse, neglect and suffering of many kinds that experience the most trauma in their lives. They have the specific memories. They have experienced loss of trust…and we have to win that trust back.
                Then it is time to do the paperwork.  Some of our kids are abandoned, we have no knowledge of who their parents are, what their birthdate is or even what their real name is.  Some of our kids are brought to us by their parent(s), relatives or neighbors who have all that knowledge to share with us. Our Social workers spend hours and hours on each case.  Sometimes it just takes a trip to a Cebu City Hospital or office building to get needed papers,  sometimes it means taking an airplane or a boat to another island, then more searching and traveling by jeepney or motorcycle or bike with a sidecar to find someone who can help us solve the mystery of our kids backgrounds. Sometimes we simply have to create their history in paperwork.
                Finally the paperwork is done and the kids are ready for adoption, often almost a year after they arrived!  It would be nice if they could be adopted in the Philippines,  not have to change culture and language, but that does not happen much at all.  Filipinos do adopt children of relatives and those that are well known to them; but by the time our children reach our home that avenue of possible adoption has passed them by.  I think that we have had only 7 or 8 kids adopted in the Philippines in the 27 years we have been here.  So, most off our kids go outside the country for adoption.  Our babies leave us as toddlers, but the older kids often stay with us quite some time, especially if they are in a sibling group.  We had one boy for 10 years before he was adopted!  Most of our sibling groups stay 2-4 years or more.  We have kids adopted in 13 countries all over the world!  Let me see if I can remember them all…USA, Norway, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Germany, France, Belgium, Sweden, Finland, United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Switzerland!  And the FIRST (and only) Switzerland parents are here in Cebu at this moment…so that is really our newest country.  All of these countries will accept babies and young children.  Some will accept small sibling groups and kids up to the age of 6 or 7.  Only the USA is very open to larger sibling groups and older children.  Norway, Australia, France and Germany have given special permission for older kids or sibling groups on a limited basis.  But, most of our older kids go to the USA.  That is okay with me!  I get to see them again that way.  The thing that "refills our tank" to be able to keep saying goodbye to these kids that  we have grown to love is being able to see them again in their adoptive family!  Adoption is a wonderful thing.   And that is a good thing,  because…EVERY CHILD DESERVES A FAMILY!
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