Books that have been super helpful to me:
1) Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids:  How to Stop Yelling and Start Connecting by Dr. Laura Markham.  This really was a game changer for Munni and me!
2)  Parenting the Hurt Child :  Helping Adoptive Families Heal and Grow by Gregory Keck and Regina Kupecky
3)  The Connected Child - By Dr. Karen Purvis
4)  The Bible 
5)  The Body Keeps the Score:  Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma by Bessel wander Kolk.  If you have a adopted a child with any type of trauma, this book should be a permanent fixture on your nightstand.  This is has been extremely helpful for me in understanding the complexities of Munni's trauma.
6)  Switch on Your Brain - by Caroline Leaf

This is a bitter bone of contention for me.  You see, I am a believer in Jesus Christ.  And I am also a single woman.  99.99% of the granting organizations believe that only MARRIED Christian couples are deemed worthy to become parents to adopted children.  I guess I missed the footnotes or something because I don't remember my bible saying in James 1: 27, "Hey MARRIED PEOPLE, pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distresses and refusing to let the world corrupt you."  I could really get started on a rant but that would take away from this being a resource page.  It is slim pickins out there for us single people but I did manage to find some very generous and very kind organizations.

1.  Help Us Adopt.  Becky Fawcett is one amazing lady.  She called me on the day I officially withdrew from the Nepal program to tell me that I won the grant for the Congo.  It was a day of mixed emotions but she talked on the phone with me while I cried for an hour.  She told me very clearly, "Kristen, your daughter is not in Nepal."  And you know what?  It was a week later that I found Munni on a waiting children's list.  The grant Becky had awarded me for Congo ended up being the grant I was able to use in order to start Munni's adoption after I lost all my money in the Nepal closure.  It truly was a miracle and Becky is a rock star!

2.  Gift of Adoption - They came through for me BIG TIME.  I mean, HUGE.  They funded my entire first trip to Hyderabad which happened to be at the most expensive time to travel to India, at Christmas. Their application process is fairly easy but they do require a small application fee.

3.  A Child Waits - This organization grants for travel expenses.  I received $4,000 towards travel and it was a major blessing!

4.  Bonfire Funds t-shirts- God blew the roof off of this one!!  I was able to raise almost $6,000 through the t-shirt sales.  Bonfire Funds will help you design if you don't already have a design, they are super friendly, very easy to work with, set it all up with wepay, and professional from start to finish.  I can't recommend them enough.  My Spread More Love shirts were something I will cherish forever and they played a huge part in helping to bring Baby R home :)  Here's what my fund looked like and you can navigate from there

5.  Booster t-shirts -  I was able to raise $1,400 through this site.  This is a little different from Bonfire in that the more you sell, the more you make.

6.  Your trade/skill - I LOOOOOVE photography.  So I used this to bless families with precious photos to document their lives while they blessed me financially.  Whatever skill, talent, hobby you have, use it to raise funds!  People will cherish what you do for them and also it's a double blessing that they get to help you with your adoption.

7. Puzzle - Find a large puzzle of something meaningful to your adoption and then ask people to donate X amount of dollars to have their name written on the back of a puzzle piece.

8.  Tag the Bag -  I was able to raise a tremendous amount of money through this campaign!  It's easy and in my opinion, the one with lasting meaning.  I bought a suitcase for Roopa and Mohini.  For any amount, someone can donate to have their name written on your child's bag.  Once your child is home, that bag becomes their keepsake holder.  Roopa LOVES to look at all of the names and countries on her bag.  I can't wait for the day that Mohini will understand the significance behind all of the names on her bag.  An added bonus is that it is a great conversation starter.  I had so many people ask about her bag in the airport!  Here is Roopa's tag her bag  and here is the link to Mohini's

9.  Part-time Job - During Munni's adoption, I worked 30 hours a week serving pizza in addition to my teaching job.

Fundraising is humbling and hard but I wouldn't trade it for anything!  It will touch your heart in a way like nothing else- to know that friends, family, and strangers are vested in your child!  I think the most important part of fundraising is to be as open and transparent as possible with your journey.  Your vulnerability is what helps people connect with your child's story.

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