January 23, 2013
I have to admit that I am torn about yesterday's
post…Kenlyn’s brave post…my chicken shit reference to it... because I should
have written the post the second night I was at Shepherd’s Field, because I
knew then. Heck I knew BEFORE I even
left, when they required me to pay a fee under their new “policy” that something was wrong. I knew and I didn’t write about it here. I had a voice, a blog with a strong following
and I knew I should speak up.
- Mia.... filthy, scraped, bruised, covered in grime and rashes. Feral. (Her clothes were so dirty we threw them away-too awful and upsetting to even want for sentimental reasons.)
- Unclean, uncared for children
- Rashes and dry cracked sometimes bloody skin conditions resulting from being unclean
- Babies in urine soaked diapers who smelled so bad I could hardly hold them.
- Kids undisciplined, running wild
- Kids in corners, left laying on floors, ignored
- Scratches and bruises on the kids (one in the shape of a hand on Mia’s back)
- A volunteer staff of 20 something’s who seemed to have little role in the care of the kids.
- A food pantry that was EMPTY. (If I had not brought some food in our suitcase I would not have even been able to feed Mia that first morning we had her.)
- No doctor, none of the Baker’s, no one “in charge” ever even stopped in during our adoption trip.
- We learned Mia never received any therapy while there. NOTHING.
- EVERY single thing we sent for Mia was missing, (supposedly “lost”) right down the book filled with our photos they showed her when she was told we were her parents.
THIS WAS NOT THE SAME PLACE I VISITED A YEAR EARLIER...or was it?
They have people willing to volunteer (beyond a day visit/photo op). They need to humbly accept that help.
|She deserved better...they all did.|
copy of the email and attachment I received from SF just prior to our adoption travel.
|to:||Lori Printy <firstname.lastname@example.org>|
|date:||Sun, Feb 26, 2012 at 8:30 PM|
|subject:|| Re: TA!|
Congrats again for your TA!!! We look forward to seeing here!!!! I enclosed a letter from the Tim and Pam about the new policy we have here that concerns the traveling , please read it :) and let me know how you think! Thanks!
Dear Lori and family, All of us at Shepherd’s Field Children’s Village (SFCV) are very excited for you and Mia as you begin your lives together as a Forever Family. It is indeed our calling, and our great joy and privilege to care for children – including yours – throughout the beginnings of their lives, but as we pass them along to you, they’ll always be in the hearts and minds of our family here at SFCV. Hopefully, you will be able to visit us again before too much time passes, as you are always more than welcome here. You are part of our Shepherd’s Field family now, forever bonded with us.
We are also thrilled that you’re able to come directly to Shepherd’s Field to add Mia to your family. We know this is a special blessing for families to pick up their children here at SFCV, rather than those children having to return to their home orphanage a week or two before you arrive in China to get them. We want to continue to offer this service when possible to families, but due to the expense involved we’ve adjusted our policy regarding the process. As of Feb. 1 of this year, families will cover the cost of their adopted child’s transportation, as well as the transportation, lodging and food of the Shepherd’s Field team member who escorts the child back to the child’s home province.
I’m genuinely sorry if this presents a problem for you, as you may not have anticipated these expenses, but we just don’t have another choice. Our own monthly operating costs continue to go up. Please let us know if you have any questions regarding this new policy, or if we can be of any assistance to you. Have a safe journey as you travel to your child’s home province, on to Guangzhou, then back to your home country. We pray that all goes well with your adoption journey, and that Mia adjusts well to your new, expanded Forever Family!
Tim & Pam Baker
Shepherd’s Field Children’s Village