To those of you who have fundraised for your own adoptions, please feel free to add your fundraising ideas in the comments. Thanks!
I loved your responses here. Oh my goodness! Reading the testimonies of many of you who have stepped out in faith and trusted God to provide financially for your adoptions is just so amazing. It’s never easy, but oh how worth it it is!
So one of the questions which has come out of that post is obviously, “How?” “How do we raise the money?” “What are some great ways to bring in decent amounts of money?”
I clearly remember when we committed to adopting Hannah-Claire back in 2005. Gosh, we lived on one minister’s salary and had no savings. We didn’t even have the dollars we needed to start the process. Talk about having to step out of the boat to walk on the water. But God said, “This is the one…go!” And so we did. We had no clue about adoptions or even how the process worked. And don’t forget that we were complete dorks when it came to raising money! In the eyes of the world we were off to a flying start!
But God. He is so kind and so gentle with us, isn’t He? When He calls us to do something, He is gracious to show us the way and guide our every step.
We decided to make a start with our fundraising efforts by doing the things we knew to do from living on support while on the mission field. We wrote a heartfelt letter to our friends and family and shared our hearts with them. We told them our story. We shared about how God had led us to a sweet little girl in China and the miracle of how she shared the same birthday as Cade. We shared her testimony.
We were amazed at how people we knew jumped in to help out. They wanted to play a part in Hannah-Claire’s unfolding miracle, and so they gave what they could. Those donations gave us the start we needed. It was a huge blessing.
And so we went along. Four adoptions later, I can say that we have probably tried most of the fundraisers that there are. Some were great and brought in a lot; others, we made a little at a time. I tell you, though, the most amazing thing is watching the God of the universe multiply the seed. Every $10 gift He turned into so much more. That’s just how things work with the Father–He’s in the business of multiplication. Some days I looked at our bank account and wondered where on earth the money had come from. Talk about building my faith.
One of the most inspiring things that I found about raising the ransom for our children was the people who stepped forward to help. Most we had never even met. Some we knew were struggling to pay their own bills. Others were facing crises in their lives. Yet, they gave. God’s people! The ones who just came to give what they could to help rescue a child. It blew me away. So often on our journey I saw the women with the mites (Mark 12) in those who helped us.
It truly is one of the most incredible journeys God has ever called us to walk.
Here are some of the fundraisers which have worked for us:
~~ Always go to your church! That should actually be the first place you start, in my opinion. I believe that the church needs to get on board and help with adoptions. They should be sowing seed into every family who adopts a child in their congregation. Not only that, but they should also be willing to stir the hearts of the body which fellowships there and encourage them to help out. If your church is not interested in coming alongside your family in your call to bring a child into your family through the blessing of adoption–either directly financially or through encouraging their body to give–quite frankly, if it were me, I would be looking for another church. I think that every church should support adoption. The mandate to care for orphans is as clear as daylight in His Word.
~~ Yard sales. Get your entire community on board. When we lived in Colorado our church allowed us to use their parking lot. I cannot even tell you how many people donated items. The church was overflowing. We publicized the yard sale all over our local community. We shared our story in the local newspaper and on local news stations. We told as many people as possible about the events we were doing. Share your own story anywhere you possibly can. Get the word out. Live your adoption out loud–not just for your own adoption, but for the millions of children who still wait for homes. Let your adoption and your journey open the hearts of as many people as possible.
We raised well over $6000 on the day of the yard sale. God moved in power as people opened their hearts and wallets. I would highly recommend that you NOT price anything for an adoption yard sale. Let everything be by donation and tell shoppers exactly why, either by signs with a large photo of your orphan and their story, or through something you hand to them, or, as we did, frequent announcements over a loudspeaker. You will be amazed at how many people will pay so much more for an item simply because they know where the money is going. Most people have huge hearts.
Adoption yard sales rock! But I would definitely encourage you to do it as BIG as possible. Open the thing up to your church and your community. It is a great way to raise money. AND it educates and motivates your church body to grasp the heart of God when it comes to caring for orphans.
~~ On-line fundraisers are always good–either raffles or auctions.
~~ A community meal.
~~ Benefit concerts.
~~ Bake sales.
~~ Sell homemade goods.
~~ There are many organizations which offer grants for special-needs adoptions. You will need to have a completed home study before you apply.
~~ Want God to bless your own adoption financially? Here’s a thing….go and sow seed into someone elses adoption fund! Bless someone in the very area that you need an outpouring in–and see what happens. It’s amazing how that happens. God cannot help but open the floodgates when we are generous.
I think those are all of the main fundraisers we did. Like I said, for some, we raised more than others. It ALL adds up, though. We watched in awe as God moved. Was it easy? Heck, no! It took so, so much hard work. But you know what? The Father loves to reward the fruit of our labor. Be willing to lay it all out there and work at it with all your heart, and be amazed!
Okay, fellow fundraising mamas–if there is anything else you would like to add, any tips or ideas for those who are in the process of fundraising, please add your comments. Be sure to include any great fundraisers which worked for your families. I know that there are many, many families just starting the process and are perhaps feeling overwhelmed by the amount they need to raise. Let’s be an ecouragement to them and remind them that with God ALL things are possible. Thanks for your help.