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Ukraine orphans come to USA for trip, possible adoption

A handful of pre-adolescent kids, wide-eyed and weary after a 20-hour flight from Ukraine

Author: Macie Jepson, WFAA-TV Published: 2007-02-03 Viewed, times: 3459
  
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WFAA-TV Most of the orphans will be trained for factory work at 16, if they are not adopted.

For more information, contact Maria Patterson on 817-832-9188 or maria@ifservices.org

A handful of pre-adolescent kids, wide-eyed and weary after a 20-hour flight from Ukraine.

Their home - an orphanage because of their parents' bad choices.

Meeting them in America are couples, most with children already and maybe room in their hearts for more.

For 7 years, Maria Patterson with International Family Services has placed older orphans in American homes.

"The children bond very quickly to the families. It's really miraculous to see what happens," she says.

"They're like sponges. They want love and affection."

What the kids believe is a vacation is possibly their last chance to be adopted and at the very least they are loved for two weeks.

Sandy Allen already has an 11-year-old daughter and a nine-year old son. She took in two children the same ages.

"They have just blended. They are precious, kind, thoughtful and respectful," she says.

Days filled with fun - field trips, bike rides and even snow quickly run out.

This Colleyville family of now six will seem so small tonight- when they're missing two.

"I know they have to go home today and I'm very, very sad, and they're sad. But I know if it's God's will, he'll bring them home," Allen says.

And others, too.

Patterson feels like half these families will adopt their short-time house guests.

The language barrier is still an issue while they say their good-byes, but love is a universal language and tears taste the same.

John Mieyr hosts exchange students for a year at a time. This time is different.

"This is two weeks and it's more difficult than I ever imagined because we've become very attached to them," he says.

What can't be spoken is written in a card.

It seems the feeling is mutual.

"She said thank you for hosting us for two weeks. They had a very good time. Say goodbye to everyone. She loves us very much and hopes to see us soon," he said.

For more information on Internation Family Services contact Patterson by phone at (817) 832-9188 or by e-mail at maria@ifservices.org.





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