America World's "Storyteller Missions" trips have team members join us for many reasons, but some of the primary purposes for team members are to love children like Jesus, give the children hope, learn their stories, and share their stories when members return home.
These trips help us better advocate for orphans who need homes by getting to know each of the children first-hand. Our team members are also able to provide photos and updates for children who have been matched with America World families and are waiting to travel to bring them home!
The post below is from Storyteller Missions team member, Tara Roof, who visited an orphanage in China and shares the story of a little boy she met there who needs a family of his own, "Curtis".
Let me introduce this precious little guy. Meet “Curtis.” “Curtis” is two years old and was the first “baby” I met last November and played with while in China. When I walked into the room, there he lay on the floor on his back. No attention. No one playing with him. I picked him up and bounced him on my leg, sang to him, talked to him, played with him. It was love at first sight. He had me at ‘hello’ and I made it my mission for the rest of our trip to show him God’s love. I told him that he is “fearfully and wonderfully made” and that Jesus loves him. I held him every minute I had the opportunity.
"Curtis" has Down syndrome and had a cleft lip and palate when we first met him last November, but has now had his lip repaired. His speech and motor skills are delayed as would be expected. He was able to lay on his stomach and lift his head to look around. He was very alert. He was able to sit up assisted. He could roll over from his back to his tummy. He was not yet sitting up on his own or crawling. He babbled the only sound he was able to babble due to his cleft lip and palate, “ya-ya-ya”. He made excellent eye contact, imitated sounds (or at least attempted to imitate), and showed joyful expressions during interactions. Overall, he appeared to be doing well.
Leaving was hard. I wondered if he’d be held after we left. If he’d be talked to and loved on or if he would lay there in the crib all alone. I still think about him. Every. Single. Day. I pray for him often. I wonder how he’s doing now since his surgery. Is he talking more? Is he being held more? Is he being loved on? Maybe now he’s stronger. Since his lip is repaired, he surely can get more nutrition in his body. I wonder if he’s grown. Is he crawling? Sitting?
I’ll be honest. I thought about adopting him. I prayed about it. I prayed hard. Trying to figure out what my purpose was in meeting “Curtis.” I told God I would, if He wanted me to, but God led me to adopt a different child. So here I am, advocating like crazy to help find "Curtis" a home. "Curtis" needs a family who can tend to his special needs. A family who has the financial resources to provide the medical care and therapies that he may require. A family who has one parent who stays at home, or one with a flexible work schedule, who’s available to take him to appointments he will likely need to attend.
I know God has a plan for this little guy and I believe he sent me to China to meet this baby, so that I could introduce him to the world- so that I could help find him a family. I know his family is out there. He has so much potential. I just know he will thrive in a home- with a family. I also believe that if he doesn’t find a family, he will not live up to his fullest potential. Not in an orphanage environment. Not without the love and attention that only a family can provide.
I pray that his family finds him soon. If you are considering adopting a child with special needs, I ask that you pray about "Curtis". Could God be calling you to be this child’s family? Please say “yes.” What a blessing he would be to you and you to him. Please consider "Curtis".
“Therefore whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes one such child in my name, welcomes me.”
For more information about adopting "Curtis", please email the America World China team at email@example.com. Please help us share "Curtis’" story and help him find his forever family.