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Wisconsin families host orphans for the holidays to find them forever families

Families in southwestern Wisconsin are hosting orphans from eastern Europe for the holidays, and hoping to find them families here.
Author: By Savanna Tomei, www.wkow.com Published: December 21, 2016, 16:00 1392

LODI (WKOW) -- Families in southwestern Wisconsin are hosting orphans from eastern Europe for the holidays, and hoping to find them families here.

The nine kids come from orphanages in countries like Ukraine and Latvia, and for many of them, this is their first time celebrating Christmas.

This is the Yoo family's third time hosting orphans.

Data shows when orphans are hosted somewhere, they have a 60 to 70 percent chance of being adopted. If they don't, their chances are only five percent. Mom Michelle Yoo says that's because actually meeting these kids changes lives.

“The idea is that we get kids that wouldn't be adopted,” says Michelle Yoo. “Nobody says 'let me go over to Ukraine and adopt a 12-year-old-boy'. But when you bring that 12-year-old here, somebody meets him, he's not a random face anymore... and he can find a family."

It's important for them to find homes, too. Children age out of the orphanages at age 16, and as many as 20 percent of them without families end up committing suicide.

This time, the Yoos are hosting a set of siblings. The rules in their home country don't let us share their names with you, so we'll call them Leo and Lily. Leo is 15 and Lily is seven.

There will be an event New Years Eve at the Goodman Center in Fitchburg for possible adoptive parents to meet them. For more information about that event, click here.

For more information about orphan hosting, click here for Michelle's blog. Some posts are password protected because of Ukrainian rules, but if you email Savanna Tomei at stomei@wkow.com, she can connect you with Michelle to get the password.


Happy Child foundation - effective help to the most needy children of the Zaporozhye region, Ukraine, since 2004

More than 16 years of trust of donors and benefactors, thousands of aid transaction processed every year. Full transparency in the usage of donation
You donated $256 330 in 2020

Our expenses in 2020

153 sick children: $143 953 
Medical equipment: $9 258
To disabled orphans: $27 848
To eco-village for orphans: $14 044
To orphans and poor families: $5 890
To adults ("Helpus" charity): $8 424
Administration and fundraising: $25 527
Total sum of expenses: $243 680 

$4 824 243 donated since 2007

They need help:

Natalya Kisluk, born February 28, 1992 - 24 years old - mixed form cystic fibrosis.

Natalya Kisluk, born February 28, 1992 - 24 years old - mixed form cystic fibrosis.

Vladislav Bogomazov, 6 years old - Cystic fibrosis, severe course

Vladislav Bogomazov, 6 years old - Cystic fibrosis, severe course

Olga Pavlenko, born in 2002, high degree cystic fibrosis

Olga Pavlenko, born in 2002, high degree cystic fibrosis

Yegor Bespalyi, born in 2017 - Severe cystic fibrosis

Yegor Bespalyi, born in 2017 - Severe cystic fibrosis

Kirill Karpachev (born 28 June 2000) and Timofei Karpachev (born 22 November 2011) – Cystic fibrosis, mixed form

Kirill Karpachev (born 28 June 2000) and Timofei Karpachev (born 22 November 2011) – Cystic fibrosis, mixed form


A Child Needs a Family: Tatiana M., born in 2005

A Child Needs a Family: Tatiana M., born in 2005

Children need a family: Daryana born in March 28, 2009

Children need a family: Daryana born in March 28, 2009

A Child Needs a Family: Vladislav Sh., born in 2003

A Child Needs a Family: Vladislav Sh., born in 2003