Institutions are Last Resorts
An institution is no place for a child. That’s why the Miracle Foundation works with orphanages to actively pursue every option to move children currently living in institutions into loving homes. We apply our proven Thrive Scale model to each of these three approaches:
Reuniting Kids with Kin
One of the Rights of the Child is the right to live with their parent or relatives. That means children living in institutions need to be reunited with their families whenever possible. We train leaders how to do a comprehensive assessment of every child to make sure they don’t have a living parent or relative who can care for them. When there is a single parent or relative living in poverty, we offer community-based programs to provide appropriate care and protection for the child and help the child transition back into their family. Our primary goal is to find and resettle children with a caring, responsible relative—and help them stay together.
We believe that a family is irreplaceable. Children thrive when they are loved, protected and part of a permanent family. That’s why the Miracle Foundation has helped reduce the number of children living in our supported institutions by approximately 25%.
Finding a Forever Family through Adoption
The Miracle Foundation educates leaders to make adoption available to all children, even older kids, who cannot be placed with their relatives. Our experienced staff trains leaders to work closely with adoption agencies to help each child become ready and available for adoption. When a birth family is not an option, we strive to find an adoptive forever family for every child.
“Family First” Gate-keeping
Many children who live in institutions are “economic orphans.” This means their parents are too poor to care for them. However, studies have shown that children are better off growing up in a poor family, than in an institution—even if they are fed and educated. In institutions, children just don’t receive the individual time and attention they deserve and need.
Many well-meaning orphanage leaders accept children who have parents. They allow single parents to place their children with them, instead of providing family-strengthening programs that would help children stay home.
Our staff is well trained to teach leaders how to offer community programs for struggling parents and family members. These programs help families stay together. Our gate-keeping policies ensure that only children who are truly without parents or a responsible family member are admitted—and that orphanage staff fully understand whom they can and cannot accept.
Until Every Child Has A Family
Every child deserves a loving family. That’s why the Miracle Foundation explores every avenue to reunite children with a parent or relative, if possible, and puts programs in place to facilitate adoptions. However, for the 8 million orphans who have nowhere else to go, we ensure that existing orphanages rise to international standards and become a Center for Excellence. Together with our supporters, we transform local orphanages into homes, provide clean water and quality healthcare, and fund scholarships for education. Our goal is not only to break the cycle of poverty, but to have each child become a healthy, happy, self-sustaining person—and experience a true sense of belonging.