- March 27, 2014
- By Susan Serrano/ Dillon International
DALLAS—Dillon International is seeking Dallas-area families to open their homes to Colombian orphans who will travel to Texas in July.
Seven Colombian children will journey to Dallas this summer as part of Dillon International’s hosting program. April 15 is the deadline for applications to serve as host family for a child.
The program brings older children who live in Colombian orphanages and foster-care homes to the United States for a fun-filled vacation that also offers children a chance to learn about American culture, share their Colombian culture and experience life in a family.
Step out of 'comfort zones'
Host families can make a difference in the life of a child through the program. “There is a great need for Christian families to step out of their comfort zones and invest time and love in children,” said Audria Adorno of Fort Worth.
Adorno and her husband, Chagy, members of Templo Bautista Emanuel in Fort Worth, served as host family for a 13-year-old girl who visited through the program last December.
“She loves music and was very alive and outgoing,” said Adorno, who plans to stay connected to her visiting child through Colombia’s Godparent program.
“She was quiet at times because she was taking in all the new experiences, but she was very easy to relate with. I know she wants to belong and feel loved. You could tell that by the way she connected with us,” Adorno added. “Christian families really need to step forward and show kids who God really is and the love he has to give us.”
Focus on older children, siblings
The program also provides an opportunity for nonprofit Dillon International to raise awareness about the need for adoptive families for older children and children who are part of a sibling group.
“Every night in Colombia, approximately 60,000 children in the care of the country’s child protection system fall asleep uncertain of what the future holds for their lives,” said Denise Schoborg, director of Dillon’s Colombia adoption program.
“Sadly, adoption for most of these children will never come true in their birth country, where the majority of adoptions involve young, healthy children. We have the opportunity to change these children’s lives dramatically through adoption.”
Host families will receive assistance from social work staff and volunteer translators throughout the children’s visit, said Anyra Cano, Dillon’s hosting program coordinator.
The children and their host families will participate in a variety of child-centered activities and get-togethers, Cano said. Planned activities include a trip to the zoo, miniature golf and arcade games and swimming.
The children who will visit this summer will be 10 to 15 years old. All are eligible for intercountry adoption, Schoborg added.
“We encourage Dallas-area families to consider being part of a miracle by opening their hearts and homes to these special visitors in July,” Schoborg said. “And we hope everyone—regardless of their address—will join us in advocating and praying for the thousands of children in Colombia who are waiting for a family.”
Editor's Note: The first paragraph was edited to delete a reference to Buckner International. Dillon and Buckner previously were affiliated but are not currently.