Our Garden Needs Tilled
The seeds you’ve sown through your critical support has provided sunshine to open up our buds and begin the blossoming process. Even though this past year we’ve been pulling weeds to nurture these kids’ lives, they have been growing through your care and support.
View below their accomplishments, which you helped to cultivate. With our garden growing, there is more plow work to complete. If you are financially stable, please consider donating to continue meeting the needs of these children.
A Message from Our Executive Director
Mai-Lynn Abel Sahd, MSW
Adoptee, Viet Nam 1995
Dear Cherished Supporters,
Spring naturally feels like a time of renewal — a time to celebrate the regrowth and rebirth of the world around us. As seedlings begin to spring up and bloom once again, we recall the old adage, “the grass is greener where you water it.”
Over the past year, Brittany’s Hope has worked to turn your generous support into a collective “garden.” Your shared passion has rekindled hope for hundreds of orphaned children and vulnerable families around the world. Now thriving and growing, this garden is providing each child with the stability and permanency they deserve.
The pause of international adoption, the postponement of in-person events, and the temporary closure of children’s homes and schools disrupted our work. Still, nothing could shake our mission to help vulnerable children. Instead of backing down, we chose to see an opportunity to reassess and quickly adjust to meet the children’s needs.
Our combined support yielded amazing, lifesaving work. We strengthened the foundations of distressed families and communities.
We reduced the risk of unnecessary child separation. And, we safely reconnected hundreds of orphaned children with their natural families when schools suddenly closed. We are ever clear in our direction and objectives: to prevent unnecessary separation of orphaned and vulnerable children. By strengthening their natural family/community; to provide social, emotional, and physical support to abandoned children in transitional care; and to help orphans with special needs prosper by providing adoption grants for families.
Our investment in families and children – our garden – has taught us that there is always more growth to come and more needs to tend to within those communities we already serve. We hope the following stories of transformation will inspire and bring warmth to your heart, knowing you wrote them. Thank you for joining our collective efforts by tending to Brittany’s Hope’s Garden of Change.
Every Child Belongs
Building Homes in Viet Nam
Every child has a history with their family of origin. Some are short or unknown; others continue to unfold as struggling parents do everything in their power to hold their families together. In each abandoned child’s story, there exists a turning point — the death of a caregiver or the loss of income — that spurs family separation. At these critical moments, you can change the fate of a child’s future. Will they take a path of abandonment or will they have a happy childhood played out at home?
Mrs. Thanh, a widowed mother of two, knows intimately how life-changing it is to receive help at just the right moment. She recently found herself contemplating the hardest decision of all. While struggling on a daily basis to feed her children, she wondered if they would have a better life without her.
Her $23 monthly income had become impossible to sustain her family, especially with her son’s heart condition and related medical bills.
This desperate mother reached her breaking point when their old timber and metal sheet home started to collapse in the wake of Viet Nam’s worst rainy season in decades. It’s at this time that Brittany’s Hope became aware of her desperate situation — so terribly in need but not too late to intervene. It’s because of your generosity that this family has remained together, safe and sound, in their newly constructed home.
Offering a helping hand at perilous junctions can make a tremendous difference for a family on the brink. By meeting families where they are and offering targeted support, we have the opportunity to positively influence children’s lives for generations to come.
You can give them the power to transform their family’s path in life — will they remain strong together, or will their family dissolve?
Help us turn the page and help these families write their success story.
As you meet the families below, consider how you could play a part – what can you do to help change their path?
Mrs. Thanh and her children
in front of their new home
A hard life of manual labor has contributed to Mrs. Binh’s polyarthritis, hindering her ability to walk and provide for herself and her daughter. Financial hardships have made it impossible to repair their dilapidated home as it crumbles around them. This family is in desperate need of an accessible home and a place where Ngoc can rest her head and keep her books dry while she continues her education.
Mrs. Tinh, Hieu,
After her husband passed away last fall, Mrs. Tinh was left with the enormous responsibility of providing for her family on her own. Mrs. Tinh worries constantly about the fate of her children’s future. With their house falling apart plank by plank, this family is holding out hope for a miracle. A stable roof over their heads can help this family stay together — happy, healthy, and self-reliant.
The Best Surprise
The Rise of Domestic
Adoption in Ethiopia
Tarike Age 3 at
Injibara Children’s Home
As we celebrate 10 years of partnership with the Injibara Children’s Home in Ethiopia, we are delighted to see the surprising changes that these years have brought. When international adoption from Ethiopia ceased, the number of abandoned children in this impoverished community grew. Out of necessity and desperation, a children’s home was established as a safe haven.
Years later, we never could have imagined the growth and mind shift that would occur within this community, who opened their hearts up to adoption.
Though kinship care is not uncommon in Ethiopia — an uncle taking in his brother’s child or a grandmother raising her orphaned grandchildren — the idea of adopting an unrelated child was rare. With so much need, how can one take on another mouth to feed?
Once distrusted and largely alienated, with time and unwavering commitment, the Carmelite Catholic Sisters established strong relationships with the local government and wider community. Their progressive approach to caring for the children fostered better inclusion as the children mingled at school and with neighbors. Everyone began to see the children for who they are, loving and deserving of having that love returned. They blossomed
with the great care, they received, and it showed.
In the last few years, we have witnessed a major shift, with 9 children adopted domestically in 2020 alone.
It started with just one family — a professor and his wife, who yearned for children’s laughter throughout their home. A visit to the Injibara Children’s Home was all it took for this couple to fall in love with twin brothers Dawit and Joseph, their sons. In the months that followed, more and more hopeful families arrived at the gate — looking to fill a child’s life with love.
It has been as if, by the acceptance of just one family taking this step, a whole community has changed their outlook on adoption. No longer something to question with suspicion, neighbors look on with pride. While adoption may not be the right choice for every child, for some, it is the ultimate gift and goal.
Just a few months ago, it filled everyone’s heart with joy — from house mothers to faithful sponsors — when sweet Tarike, age 10, was finally welcomed into the forever family of her dreams. As Tarike proudly walked home for the first time ever, hand in hand with her parents, it’s clear that years of caring support helped create that moment of joy. Tarike had always felt love, that is certain. But now, she finally knows the special feeling of having parents of her very own.
We’re optimistic that all our children will find their forever home one day. While they wait, please consider supporting them where they are.
Viet Nam Service Learning Trip
Throughout the past year, we have continually witnessed the best of humanity. Everyday people seeking to make a positive impact in the lives of others, whatever way they safely can. True, it’s felt more difficult to make that tangible difference; however, the desire to do good has never faltered.
It’s because of this yearning that 36 Occupational Therapy students, volunteers, and professors at Elizabethtown College have committed to the bi-annual Brittany’s Hope service-learning trip in Viet Nam – even if their travel date is uncertain. They’ve heard the passionate stories of fellow students; they know how vital their fundraising and advocacy are for the kids.
These change-makers are ready for this exciting adventure and determined to make a big impact. More than just a trip to Viet Nam, this service-learning experience will be full of real connections and collaborations with communities in need.
Studying international social issues and the challenges faced by vulnerable children, their enthusiasm has only grown. This inspirational group can’t wait to put their mission into action, sharing feeding techniques with caregivers and building
homes for single mothers.
Perhaps this calling sounds all too familiar – you too long to be that helping hand for someone in need. You can also join in this extraordinary experience, helping to inspire and fuel these dedicated individuals by donating towards their fundraising for life-changing service projects to make a tangible difference!
The Wait Is
Coming To An End
The Reopening of
You have finally received your match with your child, completed the necessary paperwork, and you’re just waiting for the final piece to fall into place – the travel dates! Your bags are packed, ready to go at a moment’s notice.
This has been the reality for many of our grant recipient families since March 2020, when travel for international adoption came to a halt. Some had their bags packed and repacked for a year, just waiting to get the call.
With much out of their control, families eagerly await to embrace their precious child who they have been longing for with all their hearts. Their dream of completing their family with a child’s love began to fade. But, our families are resilient — they know parenthood lasts a lifetime. They’re in it for the long-haul.
Finally, after months of waiting, hope is starting to shine through. Some countries, like Colombia and Viet Nam, are easing restrictions and granting exceptions, allowing families to travel to their precious children. As families begin to get these long-awaited calls, they are now facing costly roadblocks. Renewals of expired documents, new approvals, and mandated quarantines in-country are adding expenses to their dwindling budgets.
Adoption is complicated, and our families have met every hurdle head-on. With travel slowly resuming, their burning desire is to get to their children, to hug, love, and start the bonding process.
There has never been a greater need of help for our families. Adoption grants, like ours, are a lifeline to their children. Let’s help them navigate around the barriers and fly over the hurdles that stand in their way. Together, these precious children can prosper within their families, but first we must get them home.