Monday, August 23, 2010

fundraising with Both Hands

i know i've briefly mentioned that we've been given a pretty amazing opportunity to raise funds for our adoption through the both hands foundation, but i've yet to explain the process so i want to finally do that today. i know most of you have probably heard of lifesong for orphans and if you haven't you should check out their website! they have some amazing resources for adoptive families or for people who just want to get involved with orphan care.

when evaluating the expense of adoption and praying about ways to make it feasible for our family, ryan and i quickly decided to apply for a grant through lifesong for orphans. in doing so, we noticed an option on the application for a "both hands project". at the time we had no clue what that was but we figured that if it would help us get our kiddo home, we'd do it so we checked the box! {good thing the "both hands project" was something good! for all we knew, we were signing up to give both of our hands in exchange for a kiddo...but i guess we'd be ok with that too :)}

a couple weeks later, i was doing some reading on lifesong's website and learned more about the idea of both hands and fell in love with the project. at the time i told ryan that i hoped we'd get approved for a grant but i also hoped we'd get approved for both hands as well. it just seemed like an awesome opportunity to fulfill james 1:27 more completely than adoption alone. well, my wish came true and we heard back early this summer that we'd been approved for a $4000 matching grant and the both hands project!!

Both Hands

so, what is a both hands project you may ask?? well, essentially the idea is serving the orphan with one hand and the widow with the other! in order to do so, we are going to be hosting a full day of service on a widow's home in our local community. through some connections with our church and campus crusade for Christ, we were able to connect with an elderly woman named lucille who lives in louisville's inner city and is in serious need of help cleaning up her home. mrs. lucille has been widowed for about 10 years since her husband passed away from throat cancer. unfortunately, due to grief and lack of help, mrs. lucille has been accumulating A LOT of stuff since her husband's passing. so much stuff that a few rooms in her home are packed almost floor to ceiling!! she has asked for our help to get her home cleaned up and possibly for help preparing for a large yard sale from the items that are salvageable.

the neat part about the project is that while we are helping and serving mrs. lucille, our family also has an opportunity to raise funds to bring our sweet child into our family. how does that work, you might ask? well, we have put together a team of 9 awesome couples, 1 single gal, and our families to write letters asking for sponsorships for their day of service. similar to a walk-a-thon or golf scramble, our team of letter writers has sent out letters to their network of friends and family asking to be sponsored. to our amazement, all the money that will be raised by our letter writing team and through our personal sponsorship letters will go towards bringing our little sweeney home!! 100%!

so, where are we currently with our fundraising? we are estimating that we still need to raise about $10,000 {not including the $4,000 being matched by lifesong}. of the $14,000 we still need to complete our adoption, $8,000 will go to our agency for all the paperwork, lawyers, court fees, case workers, etc. in ethiopia and $6,000 will go towards our travels to ethiopia. while that amount seems like A LOT, i know that it is nothing to God! He has faithfully provided for us each and every time we needed to make another payment on our adoption or fill out another costly form, and we're trusting Him to continue to do the same if this is His Will for us.

in order to think of it in an easier way, i'm going to break down our needs:

we need 100 people to give $100
we need 200 people to give $50
we need 400 people to give $25
we need 100 people to give $20, 75 people to give $40, 50 people to give $100

that's it!! seems manageable, right? i think so :) most the letters from our team are beginning to trickle out now, and we plan to mail ours in the next few days so if you think of it, please say a prayer for those letters. our hope is not only to receive the funds to adopt but also to give others the opportunity to join this journey with us through prayer and giving!


Jenn said...

Hi Lesli! Nice to "meet" you!! I stumbled over here from the blogroll I forget who's page! Haha! :) But I am glad I did! Congratulations on your adoption journey and I can't wait to continue to see how it unfolds! :) I will be doing a post in the next few days on fundraising families and would love to add you!!

Oh, I also saw your post on Orphan Sunday. We are doing an Orphan Sunday Service with 3 or 4 local churches all coming together on the same day at the same place for a combined service. I'd love to help with anything I can think of. Starting off..... do you have a relationship with your pastor where you can just ask for some time to sit down and talk to him/her??