This morning someone found my blog by searching "Does Torez allow adoptions?"
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Torez, it is an institution for "disabled" children and adults in Eastern Ukraine.
When an orphan turns 4 years-old in Ukraine one of two things will happen. If they are generally healthy and able to perform basic self-care tasks (such as using the toilet, and feeding and dressing themselves) they are transferred to an internat (an orphanage for older children). However, if they are unable to perform basic self-care tasks they will be transferred to institutions. This includes children who are physically healthy, but physically or mentally "disabled" in some way.
Four years ago today, I met, for the first time, one of the most beautiful souls I have ever had the privilege of knowing; my son, Evan. It was in a small room in an orphanage in Eastern Ukraine, that I first saw those sparkling eyes, full of life and hope despite all that he had experienced. It was the first time that I experienced the joy of his radiant smile and heard his sweet voice. It was the first time that I felt his sunshine.
He was 3.5 years old. He could not walk. He could not feed himself. He was not potty trained. Prior to our commitment it appeared that his fate had been sealed and it consisted of one word:
A dead end for children and adults with special needs.
I am grateful everyday for those who loved Evan so much that they fought against that fate until they changed it. I am grateful everyday for a loving Father in Heaven who led us to an unimaginable treasure, buried deep inside that Eastern Ukrainian orphanage.
Evan is now 7 years-old. He can feed himself. He can walk. He is potty trained. He is receiving an education (and is absolutely brilliant). He is pure and living sunshine and he has touched more lives than anyone else I have ever known. The world would certainly be a darker place if his rays of light were hidden away in an institution.
But what about those who have already been dealt that fate? What about the children who lay locked away (physically, mentally and potentially) in this institution (and hundreds of others like it) in Eastern Ukraine? Is there any hope?
The glorious truth is, there is always hope; even at Torez.
In answer to the question, "Does Torez allow adoptions?," YES! Torez absolutely does allow adoptions. There have only been a few, but adoptions are happening at this institution and the children that reside there are in desperate need of humanitarian aid and families.
To learn more about Torez and its children, staff and caregivers, please take the time to read this post by Tina Kacirek, mother of Maxim, adopted from Torez in 2010.
Want to know how you can get involved in helping the children of Torez? Visit Life2Orphans to learn more.
To learn more about children available for adoption at Torez, please click on the following links: