Thursday, June 7, 2012

Why I've Taken To Begging

I thought this might be a good time to tell you all just what it is about this contest that has reduced me to humiliating acts of exposure and begging for votes.

Of course, there's the possibility of winning $2500. That's a nice chunk of change when one is scrimping, saving, and selling whatever isn't nailed down while working a part-time job to pay for all the documentation of an international adoption. So obviously, there's that.

But what really reeled me in, hook line and sinker; what really convinced me to bare my nekked face to the whole interwebby world was the opportunity to win FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS to donate to the charity of my choice.

Stop. Think about it.


That's a whole lotta moula.

And when I heard the big dineros being tossed around in the conversation, I knew I wanted to go for it.

Even if a teensy, tinesy part of me was cringing at the thought of ya'll seeing my splotchiness and "uneven skin tones" (say that last part in a somber, Mary Kay consultant's voice, please).

But I NEEDED to try.

Today I want to tell you why.

Living Hope International is a ministry dedicated to providing wonderful care to orphans in China who will likely never be eligible for adoption. These are children who have some kind of family in their lives but cannot be adequately cared for by that family. So Living Hope International takes children in, in agreement with their families (often grandparents too old or sick to care for the child, distant relatives who cannot manage the care of another family member, etc.) and sets about the business of educating them. They also work hard to provide a family-like atmosphere, and on many occasions, they are able to set up apprenticeships and vocational training for their students. All of this is done with the goal of helping the students become productive, respectful members of Chinese society who know how to work hard and give back to their community.

Here is their purpose, in their own words:

Living Hope International (LHI) exists for one specific purpose:

to operate Children's Homes and Training Centers
that offer a safe and loving environment
in which our children can develop to their full potential.

When we traveled to China in 2008, we had the privilege of traveling to the Beijing home and visiting for several hours. If you've been reading around here for a long time, you might remember me mentioning a certain young lady named Lois who stole my heart.  Our tour through the facility revealed such a warm and loving atmosphere. The classrooms were all decorated brightly and the students were all so incredibly polite and helpful. We had a lovely visit and came away humbled by the fact that we are part of something so incredible.

You see, Living Hope International is a sister organization to our adoption agency. It's a completely separate, stand-alone charitable organization that was created by the directors of our agency. Operating with its own board and accountability team, LHI is focused on it's stated mission with a clarity and a purpose that we respect and admire greatly.  You can read Samuel Fang's heart for this ministry here. It came out of a desire to do something for the children who will stay in China, for China's future, for the future of the children who will make up tomorrow's China. In fact, we often tell people that one of the "tipping points" for us in our decision to partner with Living Hope Adoption Agency was the existence of Living Hope International. Knowing that they were working to build families here all while working to strengthen and build healthy children from within China confirmed to us that this was the agency for our family.

We are incredibly proud to be in a relationship with an organization that works so hard and so creatively to help the children in their care become all that God created them to be. It's why I'm NOT to proud to beg for your votes. And obviously NOT to proud to bare my nekked face all across the interwebby.

So now that you know all that, won't you please go and vote 5 times each day, now through June 15th for my "Before" and "After" makeover? Using every email account you have in your home? And would you please consider sharing this post and this information with your friends and ask them to vote too? I'd so appreciate it. And I know the children of Living Hope International would too.

To register your votes, head to the picture of me at the upper left of the sidebar. Click on that and you will be taken right to my make-over gallery. Thank you very much for taking the time to read this. Thank you for caring for the children of Living Hope International.


Aus said...

That counts - that's why we're there every day to vote for you - and heh - what's a little pride between friends right? ;)

hugs - aus and co.

Trish said...

Voted today! Love the finished look, so pretty. :)

Unknown said...

These voting contests can be so difficult... i'll hop over to vote for you now. I wish you luck and I'll try to share it.