Save a Mother Preserve a Family?

Adopting from Ethiopia made us realize how vital it was for Samuel that we stay extremely connected to Ethiopia. Not just the culture, but the actual country.

We understand the importance of taking trips as frequently as possible, and to put as much effort into causes we find important over there, as we do here.

Since having Aram, my goal has been aiding in reducing maternal mortality rates, particularly from hypertensive diseases of pregnancy in developing countries. I can’t imagine someone dying of something like Preeclampsia or HELLP Syndrome because of their geographical location.

Ethiopia is obviously close to our heart, and I’ve discovered the maternal mortality rate staggering. The most troubling part to me is how many children that end up in orphanages because there is only one living parent. To me, helping the orphan crisis is not about adopting, but about the biological parents being well (financially and healthfully)  to care for their children.

I started looking for nonprofits that were ethical and dedicated. This was so hard to find. Then I was introduced to the Liya Kebede Foundation by a friend in Los Angeles. I connected with them and I am so impressed by their professionalism and passion for what they are doing.
Here is some information on the foundation:

Liya Kebede is a supermodel that was born and raised in Ethiopia. She is now a Goodwill Ambassador for the World Health Organization. From her experiences with WHO she decided more needed to be done and started her own foundation. Her foundation is dedicated to saving the lives of mothers and children from pregnancy related causes.

Here is some information from their website:

Every minute, a woman dies from complications that arise during pregnancy or child birth and every minute, 20 children under the age of five years die. Most of these deaths could be prevented with access to basic health care.

Our Mission
There is something desperately wrong about dying while trying to give life.  The Liya Kebede Foundation is committed to ensuring that every woman, no matter where she lives, has access to life-saving care.  We work to educate policy makers and support programs that save lives in partnership with governments, non-governmental organizations, corporations and affected communities. Saving mothers’ lives requires the strategic coordination and deployment of resources, skilled doctors and midwives, ambulances, roads, clean sheets and basic medical tools, just to name a few.
We are dedicated to saving the next generation of mothers.
What We Do
We promote the use of proven, simple, low-cost strategies to save the lives of mothers and their children.
We educate health care workers and work to improve the quality and access to medical care for all mothers and children, no matter where they live.
We support community-based projects to improve knowledge and practices of maternal and child health in order to reduce illness and deaths.
We work to involve the public and advocate for policy makers and governments to invest in mothers’ lives.

So, they are pretty great. I wanted to do something, but I’m not sure what I could possibly do for them. I realized the party girl inside of me is still alive and kicking. I definitely can plan some pretty fun parties, and that gave me an idea. I am attempting to plan a charity event for them in the California Bay Area. Any interest in volunteering or attending, please contact me.

African Children: The Hottest Accessory For Rich White Women

Brian and I had no idea when moving to Beverly Hills how in-style we would be as adoptive parents.

Lately (aside from the park where everyone thinks he is a criminal), Brian has been mistaken for either an actor or a professional athlete – even with tourists coming up and snapping pictures of him.
He’d like to think it is his good looks…. but we quickly realized it is when he is out with Samuel that is triggering these cases of mistaken identity. (I, however, have only been mistaken for the babysitter….)

International and transracial adoptions are quickly sweeping over Hollywood.
Angelina Jolie, Katherine Heigl, and Madonna all recently adopted internationally.

Ethiopian adoptions doubled following Angelina Jolie’s adoption of her daughter.

So what is the harm in being inspired by celebrity adoptions? I guess nothing if you’re doing it for the right reasons.

Some people have argued that through this process all of the people doing it to be fashionable would be weeded out because it is so long and strenuous. I completely disagree.

If you have enough money, most of the adoption can be taken care of through your attorney with little to no fuss from the prospective adoptive parents.  Also, the waiting isn’t nearly as demanding if you’re not waiting for something your heart is aching for….and certain countries the wait is much less.

A good example of a “bad” adoption is Casey Johnson. She was the heiress of the J&J brand, and adopted a little girl from Kazakhstan. She originally tried to adopt from Cambodia (“inspired” by Angelina Jolie) but the country actually turned her away (hmm…) However, after another celebrity friend introduced her to her baby from Kazakhstan she was again inspired to adopt. This time the country let her go through.  Her daughter soon after adoption was quickly taken away from her, and went to live with her grandparents (Casey’s parents). Casey’s mother was afraid for the little girl’s safety living with her adopted mother. Casey was a drug addict and a complete train-wreck.  She ended up losing her life due to poor lifestyle choices.

In areas like Beverly Hills where it is important to someone’s wellbeing to be on trend, it would not be uncommon for such an outlandish objective.

The big concern is what happens when, like all fads, this one fades? Or, like in the case of Casey Johnson, the person is not fit to raise a child.

And adoption is becoming such a trend it is also blowing up in predominantly white churches across the nation.

I was talking to a friend that was questioning some of the motives of the people at the church she goes to, when it comes to international adoption.

She was complaining about suddenly being bombarded with “however-million-orphans minus one” videos, t-shirts, and other propaganda that either glorifies the parents or tries to push for international adoptions as a means to save a life.

**I personally, know people who have used that line in their videos and I think their motives were great for adopting, so please don’t be offended if you’re reading this**

I hope that any potential adoptive parents know:
if you’re doing this for any other reason that wanting a child in your family, you are in for a big wake-up call.

It is something almost anyone can do, but it doesn’t mean everyone should do it.