Finding Jonathan a Family: How the Melaleuca Foundation Helped One Little Boy Get Adopted

Before leaving the Santa Lucia Children’s Home with his newly adopted family, Jonathan Luis* had one important stop to make. He needed to thank the orphanage’s adoption lawyer who had worked so tirelessly for seven years to help him find a forever family. “When I grow up I want to be just like you,” Jonathan said. “I want to become an adoption lawyer and help kids find a family.”

Jonathan’s lawyer still gets a little choked up when recalling that moment. “Being an adoption lawyer is so emotionally difficult because you feel for these children,” says Santa Lucia’s lawyer, Pablo Alvarez.* “Jonathan’s case had so many ups and downs. Even though it required hard work and long hours, a moment like that makes everything worth it.”

Jonathan’s adoption was not easy. He arrived at Santa Lucia Children’s Home when he was just 2 years old. Pablo worked with Jonathan’s biological parents, arranging for them to go through rehabilitation in hopes of bringing the family back together again. After trying for over six years with no success, Pablo and Sor Maria del Cisne—the head nun at Santa Lucia—decided to pursue another avenue: adoption. Because Jonathan’s parents had never signed away parental rights, adoption would be very difficult.

Overcoming the Odds for Adoption

“At best, this case had a 5 percent chance of success,” Pablo recalls. “Most orphanages can’t afford to help any child who has less than a 30 percent chance at adoption. Fortunately, Santa Lucia has the support of the Melaleuca Foundation. This longstanding relationship gave us the confidence to move forward on a patch that could possibly help Jonathan.”

Thanks to the Melaleuca Foundation, Santa Lucia was able to take the case to court and help Jonathan become eligible for adoption. It was an arduous process, but everyone at Santa Lucia worked together to help Jonathan.

Jonathan was eventually paired with a family for adoption. Because Jonathan’s new family lived in a different country, he would need to learn a new culture and a new language.

Reassuring a Scared Little Boy

As excited as Jonathan was about the idea of a family, going to a new place was scary. He began acting out in school, and his usually high grades started to slip. Sor Maria and a social worker at the orphanage sat down with him and asked what was going on.

“I worried, ‘What if it falls through and I don’t get a family?'” Jonathan says. “What if the kids at my new school think I’m dumb because I can’t speak the language?”

Sor Maria gave Jonathan a big hug and assured him: Not only would he have a family, but he would learn the language and make new friends. As Jonathan worked with a social worker to prepare for his new home, he gradually overcame these fears.

When the time came for Jonathan to leave Ecuador with his new family, there was only one last hurdle: the plane. Jonathan had never flown before. H e was terrified he would fall out of the plane when it was in the sky.

“Jonathan had never even seen a plane, so the idea of flying was scary,” Sor Maria recalls. “It took Pablo and me a few talks with him before he revealed what was scaring him. Somehow, we were able to help him become comfortable with the idea.”

A Successful Family Transition

Jonathan playing basketball. This newly adopted little boy is seeing great success both in school and life, thanks in part to your contributions to the Melaleuca Foundation.
Jonathan playing basketball. This newly adopted little boy is seeing great success both in school and life, thanks in part to your contributions to the Melaleuca Foundation.
Jonathan’s journey to his new family wasn’t easy, but it was well worth it. After being with his new family for two years, Jonathan feels their love and excitement for him every day. As Sor Maria predicted, he has quickly picked up the new language and made many new friends. Not only is he excelling at school, but he has also become the star of his youth league basketball team.

A Christmas Miracle

This Christmas, Jonathan will receive a special present. His famil plans to get together with two other families whose children were also recently adopted from Santa Lucia and live in the same country.

Amazingly, both of these girls stayed in Santa Lucia’s “House 4” with Jonathan, where they all lived together for several years. Under the loving care of a “house mother,” the eight children in House 4 took care of one another, ate meals together, and grew in heart and spirit as a family unit. Although they technically don’t share the same bloodline, Jonathan considers them his sisters.

“I didn’t think it was possible to have a better Christmas than the one I had last year with my new family,” Jonathan says. “But this year, I get to spend Christmas with my family as well as two of my Santa Lucia sisters and their families.”

Sometimes it’s easy to forget what your monthly donation does: the lives you help change and the families you create. Thanks to your support and contributions, the Melaleuca Foundation not only helps children get a warm meal and a safe bed, but also gives them a chance to feel loved, to have a mom and a dad and to be a brother or sister.

Jonathan is just one of many adoptions made possible by you.

*Names have been changed to protect privacy in accordance with various adoption laws.

Finding Jonathan a Family: How the Melaleuca Foundation Helped One Little Boy Get AdoptedUna familia para Jonathan: La Fundación Melaleuca ayudó a un pequeño a encontrar una familia

melaleuca-foundation-success
Before leaving the Santa Lucia Children’s Home with his newly adopted family, Jonathan Luis* had one important stop to make. He needed to thank the orphanage’s adoption lawyer who had worked so tirelessly for seven years to help him find a forever family. “When I grow up I want to be just like you,” Jonathan said. “I want to become an adoption lawyer and help kids find a family.”

Jonathan’s lawyer still gets a little choked up when recalling that moment. “Being an adoption lawyer is so emotionally difficult because you feel for these children,” says Santa Lucia’s lawyer, Pablo Alvarez.* “Jonathan’s case had so many ups and downs. Even though it required hard work and long hours, a moment like that makes everything worth it.”

Jonathan’s adoption was not easy. He arrived at Santa Lucia Children’s Home when he was just 2 years old. Pablo worked with Jonathan’s biological parents, arranging for them to go through rehabilitation in hopes of bringing the family back together again. After trying for over six years with no success, Pablo and Sor Maria del Cisne—the head nun at Santa Lucia—decided to pursue another avenue: adoption. Because Jonathan’s parents had never signed away parental rights, adoption would be very difficult.

Overcoming the Odds for Adoption

“At best, this case had a 5 percent chance of success,” Pablo recalls. “Most orphanages can’t afford to help any child who has less than a 30 percent chance at adoption. Fortunately, Santa Lucia has the support of the Melaleuca Foundation. This longstanding relationship gave us the confidence to move forward on a patch that could possibly help Jonathan.”

Thanks to the Melaleuca Foundation, Santa Lucia was able to take the case to court and help Jonathan become eligible for adoption. It was an arduous process, but everyone at Santa Lucia worked together to help Jonathan.

Jonathan was eventually paired with a family for adoption. Because Jonathan’s new family lived in a different country, he would need to learn a new culture and a new language.

Reassuring a Scared Little Boy

As excited as Jonathan was about the idea of a family, going to a new place was scary. He began acting out in school, and his usually high grades started to slip. Sor Maria and a social worker at the orphanage sat down with him and asked what was going on.

“I worried, ‘What if it falls through and I don’t get a family?'” Jonathan says. “What if the kids at my new school think I’m dumb because I can’t speak the language?”

Sor Maria gave Jonathan a big hug and assured him: Not only would he have a family, but he would learn the language and make new friends. As Jonathan worked with a social worker to prepare for his new home, he gradually overcame these fears.

When the time came for Jonathan to leave Ecuador with his new family, there was only one last hurdle: the plane. Jonathan had never flown before. H e was terrified he would fall out of the plane when it was in the sky.

“Jonathan had never even seen a plane, so the idea of flying was scary,” Sor Maria recalls. “It took Pablo and me a few talks with him before he revealed what was scaring him. Somehow, we were able to help him become comfortable with the idea.”

A Successful Family Transition

Jonathan playing basketball. This newly adopted little boy is seeing great success both in school and life, thanks in part to your contributions to the Melaleuca Foundation.
Jonathan playing basketball. This newly adopted little boy is seeing great success both in school and life, thanks in part to your contributions to the Melaleuca Foundation.
Jonathan’s journey to his new family wasn’t easy, but it was well worth it. After being with his new family for two years, Jonathan feels their love and excitement for him every day. As Sor Maria predicted, he has quickly picked up the new language and made many new friends. Not only is he excelling at school, but he has also become the star of his youth league basketball team.

A Christmas Miracle

This Christmas, Jonathan will receive a special present. His famil plans to get together with two other families whose children were also recently adopted from Santa Lucia and live in the same country.

Amazingly, both of these girls stayed in Santa Lucia’s “House 4” with Jonathan, where they all lived together for several years. Under the loving care of a “house mother,” the eight children in House 4 took care of one another, ate meals together, and grew in heart and spirit as a family unit. Although they technically don’t share the same bloodline, Jonathan considers them his sisters.

“I didn’t think it was possible to have a better Christmas than the one I had last year with my new family,” Jonathan says. “But this year, I get to spend Christmas with my family as well as two of my Santa Lucia sisters and their families.”

Sometimes it’s easy to forget what your monthly donation does: the lives you help change and the families you create. Thanks to your support and contributions, the Melaleuca Foundation not only helps children get a warm meal and a safe bed, but also gives them a chance to feel loved, to have a mom and a dad and to be a brother or sister.

Jonathan is just one of many adoptions made possible by you.

*Names have been changed to protect privacy in accordance with various adoption laws.melaleuca-foundation-success
Antes de salir del hogar de niños Santa Lucía con su nueva familia, Jonathan Luis* tenía algo importante que hacer. Tenía que agradecer al abogado de adopción del orfanatorio que había trabajado sin cesar durante siete años para ayudarlo a encontrar una familia. “Cuando sea grande quiero ser como tú”, le dijo Jonathan. “Quiero ser un abogado de adopción y ayudar a otros niños a encontrar una familia”.

El abogado de Jonathan todavía se emociona al reflexionar sobre ese momento. “Ser un abogado de adopción es muy difícil emocionalmente porque uno se encariña con los niños. El caso de Jonathan tuvo muchos altibajos. Aunque requirió horas y horas de trabajo arduo, todo valió la pena por un momento así”, comentó Pablo Álvarez*, el abogado de Santa Lucía.

La adopción de Jonathan no fue nada fácil. Llegó al hogar de niños Santa Lucía cuando tenía apenas dos años. Pablo trabajó con los papás biológicos, ayudándolos a participar en un programa de rehabilitación con la esperanza de reunir a la familia de nuevo. Después de intentar por más de seis años sin éxito, Pablo y Sor María del Cisne —la directora de Santa Lucía—decidieron buscar otra alternativa: la adopción. Debido a que los papás de Jonathan nunca renunciaron a sus derechos de paternidad, la adopción sería difícil.

Desafiando las probabilidades

“Como mucho, este caso tenía un 5% de probabilidad de tener éxito”, recuerda Pablo. “La mayoría de los orfanatorios no pueden cubrir los gastos de ayudar a un niño que tiene menos de un 30% de probabilidad de ser adoptado. Afortunadamente, Santa Lucía cuenta con el apoyo de la Fundación Melaleuca. Esta relación nos dio la confianza para seguir adelante con un plan que podría ayudar a Jonathan”.

Gracias a la Fundación Melaleuca, Santa Lucía pudo llevar el caso de Jonathan a la corte y ayudarlo a llegar a ser elegible para ser adoptado. Fue un proceso largo y difícil, pero todos en Santa Lucía trabajaron juntos a fin de ayudar al pequeño.

Eventualmente encontraron a una familia para Jonathan. Pero esta vivía en otro país, así que Jonathan tendría que aprender una nueva cultura e idioma.

Confianza para un niño asustado

Aunque Jonathan estaba muy emocionado con la idea de una familia, tenía miedo de vivir en un nuevo lugar. Empezó a portarse mal en la escuela y sus altas calificaciones empezaron a empeorar. Sor María del Cisne y un trabajador social del orfanatorio se sentaron con él y le preguntaron qué le sucedía.

“Estoy preocupado, ¿qué tal si no funciona y no consigo una familia?”, confesó Jonathan. “Que tal si los niños de mi escuela creen que soy tonto porque no hablo su idioma?”

Sor María lo abrazó y le aseguró que no solo tendría una familia, sino que también aprendería el idioma y tendría nuevos amigos. A medida que Jonathan trabajó con el trabajador social para preparase para su nuevo hogar, empezó a superar sus miedos.

Cuando llegó el momento de que Jonathan saliera de Ecuador con su nueva familia, solo había un obstáculo más: el avión. Jonathan nunca había volado. Tenía pavor de caerse del avión cuando este estuviera en el cielo.

“Jonathan nunca había visto un avión, así que la idea de volar le daba mucho miedo”, recuerda Sor María del Cisne. “Pablo y yo tuvimos que hablar con él varias veces antes de descubrir qué le daba tanto miedo. Pero, de alguna forma, pudimos ayudarlo a estar más cómodo con la idea”.

Una transición exitosa

Jonathan jugando al basquetbol. Este niño recién adoptado está experimentado mucho éxito tanto en la escuela como en la vida, gracias en parte a las contribuciones que recibe la Fundación Melaleuca.
Jonathan jugando al basquetbol. Este niño recién adoptado está experimentado mucho éxito tanto
en la escuela como en la vida, gracias en parte a las contribuciones que recibe la Fundación Melaleuca.
El trayecto de Jonathan con su nueva familia no fue nada fácil, pero valió la pena. Después de estar con su familia por dos años, Jonathan siente el amor y la emoción que tienen por él todos los días. Como lo predijo Sor María, aprendió el idioma rápidamente y tiene muchos amigos. No solo sobresale en la escuela, sino que también es la estrella de su equipo de basquetbol.

Un milagro navideño

Esta Navidad, Jonathan recibirá un regalo especial. Su familia tiene planes de juntarse con otras dos familias que también adoptaron niños del hogar de niños Santa Lucía y que viven en el mismo país.

Lo más increíble es que estas dos niñas vivían en la “Casa 4” con Jonathan, donde formaron una familia por varios años. Bajo el cuidado amoroso de una “mamá de casa”, los ocho niños de la Casa 4 se cuidaron, cocinaron y comieron juntos, jugaron y crecieron emocional y espiritualmente como familia. Y aunque no comparten la misma sangre, Jonathan las considera como sus hermanas.

“No creía que era posible tener una mejor Navidad que la que tuve el año pasado con mi nueva familia”, dice Jonathan. “Pero este año voy a pasar la Navidad con mi familia y también dos de mis hermanas de Santa Lucía y sus familias”.

A veces es fácil olvidarse de lo que significa su donación mensual: las vidas que usted ayuda a cambiar y las familias que ayuda a crear. Gracias a su apoyo y sus contribuciones, la Fundación Melaleuca no solo ayuda a los niños a tener una comida caliente y una cama segura, sino que también les brinda la oportunidad de sentir amor, tener una mamá y un papá y ser un hermano o hermana.

Jonathan es solo uno de los muchos niños que usted está ayudando a encontrar una familia.

*Se han cambiado los nombres para proteger la privacidad de acuerdo con las leyes de adopción.

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