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What are your New Year's resolutions? Have you given thought to your charitable contributions?

I would like to ask you to consider a very deserving family. Please browse through my website by clicking Here and consider the way that you can help by clicking Here.
Here is a brief overview:
Following Hurricane Katrina we met a family at a shelter where we volunteered. We made friends. We spent hours playing with the kids, and fell in love with them. A month later we got them setteled in their new home. A few weeks later, the mom left with the kids, running back to her parents. We thought we would never see them again. But they came back.
A few months later she took the kids and went back to New Orleans. Once again, we thought we would never see them again. A few weeks later the kids were back with their step-father, although the mom chose to stay in New Orleans, choosing to live on the streets with her friends and her beer.
The Step-father is 70 years old, and while he is not the biological dad, he loves these children dearly. He is willing to give them a good home and teach them how to live above poverty.
We will do anything in our power to keep this family together. The dad's income is Social Security and Disability. The Disability denies him having any type of job, even one that he could do. But of course, the Disability pay is not enough for even one person to live on.
A recent illness reminded us that the Dad may not be able to raise these kids indefinitely. The kids spend every weekend with us and more, and they look to us as "co-parents" with their Father. We wish we were rich, but we are not. Adding on a room so that the kids don't have to sleep on the floor and have a feeling of stability has become our priority.
We are so thankful for all those who have donated cash, clothing and household items. Due to their generosity, we have been able to keep this family in a home with their basic needs met. But we know that the cost of raising 4 kids will only increase, while Dad's income will not.
So often we have asked ourselves these questions: Why did we happen to volunteer at this shelter? Why did this family happen to be there? Why did we form a friendship with them that resulted in our "Sponsorship" of this family? Why did the Mom send the kids back?
All we can think is that God has big plans for these kids! He has worked very hard to bring them back to their Step-Father and to us. It seems to me that we must continue this mission, no matter how hard it may be at times. These kids deserve the chance to live a life free of fear and with dreams for the future.
We have the opportunity to save these children from a life of alcohol, drugs and abuse that comes with living on the streets. What could be more important?
Can you help us in our journey? You can be assured that every dollar is used wisely to provide for the basic needs of the family. Our goal is to keep them in a home, provide heat and a/c, and make sure that they have what they need to live. Funds are used to provide the basics and fill in the items that are not donated.
Here is the link to the donation page on my website - Click Here!
Here are some things to think about:
Billions of dollars were donated to large agencies following Hurricane Katrina. These funds were meant to go to the people affected. It did not get to them.
Rebuilding in New Orleans is being done in a large part by very dedicated volunteers. There are many who cannot return to their homes. They are scattered across the country and left to fend for themselves. Their only choice was to turn to the communities that took them in, but the people of the communities had already sent their donations to the large agencies.
Not only were homes lost, families were torn apart. Family dynamics change, leaving parents disoriented and children bewildered. Learning to recognize the symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome has been an eye-opening experience for us. It can knock a person down until they can't function. A 5 year old boy draws a picture for his therapist of a house built on stilts so that the water can't come in. A 10 year old girl cannot enjoy being a little girl because she has to take care of everyone, making sure they are ok. Time does not heal everything!
Please give the kids a chance!
Stephanie
Click here to Read More

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