Spend no extra time, have fun on Halloween and give back to orphans.
My first Halloween was when I was 16-years-old. I remember dressing up as Spiderman and had a great time answering the door and giving the kids of our neighborhood candy. Why wait until age 16? Well, we just moved to the United States that year and I had never been in a country that celebrated it before. The whole experience was fun and exciting.
Since then, I've viewed Halloween from many different perspectives. As a young adult going to some fun (and clean) parties, as a new mom going out with our young son, and now as a mom of a teenager wondering about the parties going on around us. I used to decorate but don't anymore because we don't get any trick-or-treaters.
More than candy
Throughout these past years I never considered using this day to do more than give or receive candy. Until I read about the Orphan Foundation. It challenges us to do more. It's simple: go out trick-or-treating and bring a can for some donations to help orphans around the world.
Specifically, they hope to raise nearly $1,000,000 to help with the foundation's grant programs for adopting families and for their service tours to orphanages around the world. All it takes is 100,000 kids that raise $10 each. With the money the foundation will continue to pursue its primary mission is to eliminate barriers to adoption, by providing financial support and information to adopting families, as well as services to institutionalized orphans and foster care children worldwide.
An orphan crisis
Apparently the orphan situation around the world has reached epic proportions according to co-founder Joe DiDonato.
"The number of orphans and displaced children in the world exceeds 163 million, creating a population that would make them the 7th largest nation on the planet. In Eastern Europe, less than 50% will see their 20th birthdays, and of those that do, 50% will turn to crime, drugs, and prostitution to survive. In other parts of the world, children are being used to fight wars or commit terrorist actions."
Why do adoptive parents need help?
According to the Orphan Foundation the cost of adoption has skyrocketed out of the reach of most families, averaging nearly $20,000 domestically, and $25,000 to $40,000 internationally. Many orphans go un-adopted because families can't afford it.
"Faced with a large and growing list of families trying to adopt children, The Orphan Foundation is asking children across the nation to help out by carrying a coin canister with them on their trick-or-treat rounds."
What can you do?
Families and kids can download and print canister wrappers. The wrapper will go around any size can, and includes instructions for mounting and sending in the donations.
It sounds like a great and easy way to help out. Kids helping kids while doing something they love. I'm sure that I would have found a dollar to give to the kids that came to our door with one of those cans when I was dressed up as Spiderman. In fact, I hope someone comes to our door again so I can do more than give candy.