Philip Hayden Foundation

From the Heart

By Tim Baker

Our 26th year of serving some of the most vulnerable children in China is behind us. It’s time to look forward to another new year to see how The Philip Hayden Foundation can further help and support these vulnerable children. One huge takeaway from 2021 has been identifying where and what the needs are. As mentioned in last month’s Heartbeat, state-run orphanages in the cities have been renovated. They also have increased access to medical care and therapy. More caregivers have been trained to provide specialized care to orphans with disabilities. 

While this is a step in the right direction, orphan care improvement in rural areas still falls behind. These regions often lack the resources needed to provide the level of care required. On top of that, children living in poverty and unsupported orphans lack a stable upbringing. Many poor parents struggle to make a living, and cannot provide the support needed for their kids. There remains a need for outside help and support to provide for those vulnerable kids. 

A Need for Community Social Programs

We have government-provided assistance, charities, and organizations that support struggling families here in the United States. These groups offer help through various programs, providing food, therapy, and specialized education. There are not as many of those community-based programs in China. Many regions of China desperately need these types of community social programs. 

Supporting community-based social programs is a new way PHF is helping de facto orphans and special-needs kids in poor communities. Currently, the government provides many of the community social workspaces. But in some areas, local churches or other businesses offer space. 

The costs of community-based workspaces are low in poor regions, but they are very effective. For less than $100/month (USD), PHF can fund a social worker in a rural area. This worker will support families with kids who are disabled and de facto orphans. The social worker will be the guiding support between the children and their parents and between the government and society at large. You might say that the social workers are like guardian angels who help bridge the gap, increasing stability to the children’s upbringing. 

We’re thankful for those in the community who have opened their doors in providing space for this to occur. It’s definitely a team effort with all of us working together to help the most vulnerable. Thank you for being there with us to improve the lives of these kids


Meet Our Media Coordinator – Ally!

Allison Jarvis has been the Media Coordinator for The Philip Hayden Foundation since 2018. Her first-hand experience living at Shepherd’s Field Children’s Village and passion for children with disabilities make her a valuable part of our team. Thank you, Ally!

Ally holding infant

My journey with The Philip Hayden Foundation started in 2011 when my family adopted my sisters Mia Grace and Teagan from China. Mia grew up at Shepherd’s Field Children’s Village, arriving days after birth. I can confidently say that Shepherd’s Field saved Mia’s life. My family is thankful every single day for it. Shepherd’s Field and its sponsors and supporters provided many life-saving surgeries for Mia and treated multiple infections. Her ayis loved her like their very own child. In 2017 my family adopted my sister Lainey from China, and we are still so thankful for how much her ayis cared for her when she lived in China. 

I only spent a day at Shepherd’s Field in 2011, but in 2015 I had another opportunity to volunteer at Shepherd’s Field. Our team helped prepare the Vocational Center for more remodeling and loved on the kids as much as possible. I fell in love with this place and was beyond excited to write my name on the guest house wall.

There was one child at Shepherd’s Field who grabbed hold of my heart, Simeon. Simeon was born with Myelomeningocele/hydrocephalus and reminded me of my sister Mia. He had a contagious laugh and the smile to go with it. In 2016 I knew that I had to go back, so I decided to intern on the therapy team for a month. 

Instead of on a surface level, I got to know each child as an individual. They were all so accepting and only teased me once and a while because I did not know Chinese. I spent time with Simeon in therapy, getting to know his more mischievous side. He loved to trick me into giving him more and more treats. Each child changed me in a way that I cannot begin to describe. They opened my eyes to the bigger picture of life and the worth of every person. 

A Year at Shepherd’s Field Changed Me

The Ayis, staff, and kids at Shepherd’s Field changed me for the better, and so in September of 2017, I moved to China, intending to stay for a year. I worked under the Director of Therapy, who helped guide me through my year there. It was really the kids who taught me! They became my brothers and sisters – and boy did they pick on me like I was their sister. Hector helped me with my Chinese, Cora taught me patience, and Brody showed me what joy really looks like. All the kids showed me unconditional love, and it is a lesson I carry with me to this day. 

Working on the therapy team meant that I witnessed the kids accomplish goals that they never thought they could. I remember the therapy team constructing a baseball bat that Charlie could use. Charlie has arthrogryposis and cannot grasp things well. We all went outside to try out his adaptive bat. The therapy ayis and I ended up chasing balls all over the playground while Charlie laughed at us and begged for more. 

Ally with PHF team 2018

There were tough times while I lived at Shepherd’s Field Children’s Village, but it could always be remedied by walking into one of the children’s houses. We had the most supportive staff anyone could want. Shepherd’s Field Children’s Village felt like home to many people – the kids, ayis, workers, staff, interns, volunteers, and visitors! 

In August 2018, the children were all recalled to their home provinces. After they all journeyed back to their home provinces, the PHF staff did not stop caring for the long-term wellbeing of each child. We continued to advocate and provide for those kiddos the best we could. And now we have widened our mission to children in Asia who need support to thrive – One at a Time Asia

After moving back to the States in 2019, I continued leading social media for PHF to stay connected to the place that I loved so much. Over three years later, I still work for the PHF in communication and social media. If you contact PHF through Facebook or Instagram, you will reach me! 

This is not just a job to me; it is a passion for advocating for orphans’ value as individuals and spreading that message to everyone around us.

– Ally Jarvis


Year End Planning

Have you moved? Prefer to receive your year-end contribution statement by email? Email Lori.Baxter@chinaorphans.org and let me know! Statements are sent out the third week in January by mail. Update your records now by visiting our self service portal at chinaorphans.org/contact-us. You will need to provide your email address to log in. You can even check your donation history while you are logged in! 

If you prefer, call Lori at PHF at 866-526-3712 or email her directly. Your donations make a difference in the life of an orphan in China. 


Access Your Account Online

Great News! We have updated our online donation system, and you now can access your account online. For your security, you will need to request access through a link on our website here. You’ll be asked to provide your email address, and a link will be sent to you. For your security, that link is only good for 24 hours. But you can access your account as often as you want.

Use your self-service page to:

  • Update your physical address
  • Update your email address
  • Change your online donations
  • View your donation history
  • Print receipts for past donations

If you have any questions, please email Lori.Baxter@chinaorphans.org.

From the Heart

By Lily Zhuang

With the continuous improvement of China’s economic and social development and enhanced welfare level, fewer children are abandoned. As a result, the number of orphans in China has dropped for seven consecutive years.

Looking back to Chinese New Year in 2014, I remembered something that Tim Baker said during a staff meeting after he returned from Guiyang, where his first daughter was adopted from. He said: “What we’re doing is working to lose our jobs. If one day there are no orphans in China, we’ll have nothing to do and that will be the best day ever.”

The number of orphans in China began to decline in 2012, and now – nine years later – most of the Social Welfare Institutes (SWIs) have enough resources to provide a good life for the daily care of the remaining orphans, including education and therapy. Even though the demand for foster homes has dropped throughout China, we haven’t lost our jobs just yet. There are actual orphans waiting for us to go to them, to go to the underdeveloped places where they live, and to go show them there’s hope for a better life.

graph showing the decline in the number of orphans in China since the peak in 2012

Unsupported Children – the New Challenge

Starting in 2020, the government put more resources into unsupported children, or de facto orphans. China has defined an orphan as a child whose parents are deceased or cannot be found. Jointly issued by the Ministry of Civil Affairs, the Supreme People’s Court and 10 other departments, the guideline defined de facto orphans as children with both parents serving prison terms, undergoing compulsory drug rehabilitation or restriction of personal freedom as legitimate orphans. This puts them in the same category as children who have sick, disabled parents or parents who have been declared missing or deceased. A child is unsupported even if only one of a child’s parents has restricted personal freedom and the other parent is dead or missing. The children of migrant workers left behind in the care of extended family are also considered unsupported children.

Since adoption is becoming more difficult due to Covid19, coupled with the fact that most orphans have special needs, we’ve been looking for better ways to help vulnerable children and orphans from all backgrounds and situations.  

At the end of September, I visited a social workstation founded by an enterprising nurse and her sisters. When caring people like these three sisters spread a little faith and love to orphaned children, it sets an example for the entire nation. Along with the renewed effort by the government to support destitute children from all circumstances and backgrounds, this seems like a good model to follow. Thank you for your prayers and support as we work together to “put ourselves out of a job.”


Orphans in Rural Asia Need Help

Orphan care in urban areas has improved dramatically over the past decade. State orphanages were renovated or new ones built. Besides increased access to medical care and therapy, more caregivers have been trained to provide specialized care to orphans with disabilities. This is important because 98% of orphans in China have disabilities. But orphan care improvement in rural areas still falls behind.

Two thirds of Chinese citizens live in urban areas and most enjoy great economic freedom. There are also more therapy centers and specialized education for children with disabilities in urban areas. While income has also increased in rural areas, it is far lower than in urban areas. In fact, the average income in a rural area is only one third of the average income in an urban area. While only a third of Chinese citizens live in rural areas, 80% of children with disabilities live in rural areas.

Orphans In Rural China Affected by Poverty

The next horizon for helping at-risk children and orphans is in rural areas, where poverty is high, and resources are limited. Beyond helping orphans, there is a need to help unsupported children and to provide resources to families so that they can keep their children.

In one such community, a compassionate nurse and her sisters began caring for the sick, elderly, and orphans. The three women help operate the local orphanage – as well as multiple children’s centers – that accept all orphans, including unsupported children. The local Ministry of Civil Affairs provides buildings and the basic infrastructure, and the sisters oversee the operation and personnel. In some villages, they’ve repurposed old churches into Children’s Centers and trained the former church workers as Social Workers. The three sisters report that things are going well, but the need is great.

Orphan Care in Rural Asia

Trusted friends have had direct contact with this ad hoc foster home for more than a decade. The director has a passion for loving and caring for the vulnerable children in her community. Sadly, the allocated funds from the local government are not sufficient to meet the basic needs of the orphans. Your donations will help provide formula and diapers as well as increase the number of workers. Children with disabilities need more time from a caregiver than a child without disabilities. The local schools do not yet have specialized education, and some children have medical needs not covered by the China Center for Child Welfare and Adoption (CCCWA).

Right now, there is a monthly shortfall of thousands of dollars to meet the basic needs of the orphans in this community. With your donation, you can make a difference in the lives of these orphans today, One at a Time in Asia.

Privacy Requirements
Information and photos of these children can only be shared in print and through email. An English name will be assigned to help you get to know the children you help. Please do not post any information online or forward any emails.

You can sign up to receive continuing information about this project by email and share the link with your community.


Stories of Children in Need

This rural welfare workstation cares for more than 60 children with a variety of needs. Some are orphans, and some are unsupported children. Many of the caregivers are volunteers, lovingly caring for each child. Because privacy is important, we will only introduce 4 children. Your donations will help not only these children, but their friends with similar needs.

Severe Medical Need

Owen was born with severe medical needs and professionals did not see a possibility for improvement. His current condition calls for a special formula that will keep his weight up and to provide the nutrients his body needs. He has a tumor on his spine that is inoperable so the caretakers are trying their best to make him as comfortable as possible. There is limited space and staff so he can’t always get what he requires. Because Owen doesn’t need surgery, funds often go to the children that do.

Cerebral Palsy

Elijah has cerebral palsy, but that does not slow him down. When Elijah was six years old, he liked listening to music and dancing with his caretakers and that hasn’t changed! Now as a nine year old, Elijah works with his caretakers three times a week to improve his strength and mobility. His favorite activities are playing with clay, throwing and catching a ball and tracing shapes on the white board. He attends preschool and is making great strides with reading and basic math. Elijah will not need any surgeries, but he needs physical and occupational therapy in order to thrive.

Hemiplegia

Clara was born with hemiplegia on her left side, including hands and feet. This has impacted her mobility and at twelve years old, she would like to feel more independent. Due to her age she worries about living arrangements and her future ability to provide for herself. Clara would benefit from a mobility aid and physical therapy to build strength on her left side.

Autism

When we met Dominic, our caregivers noticed traits that are often related to Autism. Because of this diagnosis they have learned how to care for him in the best way possible. Dominic would benefit greatly from therapy, but it is not available. He is sensitive to certain textures and this has made it difficult for caregivers due to limited resources. He does not like crunchy foods, but most of the soft foods are given to the younger children because of a limited supply. Dominic has trouble participating in school, but there aren’t enough caregivers for him to receive individual assistance. He would benefit from stim toys – toys that help with self regulation – when he becomes overstimulated, but they are not available because of limited resources.

Burns

Elaine is seven years old and was burned severely in her family home. Her parents did not have the resources to provide the care she required, so they asked for help. Elaine needed shelter and the ability to feel safe in her environment. Her injuries call for continued medical attention to prevent infection and severe scarring.


Donate in Honor of a Loved One

Are you looking for a lasting gift to honor someone? Now you can choose to give a tribute gift through Philip Hayden Foundation. With a minimum gift of $15, we will mail a personalized card to the recipient – or to you so that you can add your personal note. Just check the box for making a gift in honor of someone and follow the on-screen instructions. You can also mail a check to Philip Hayden Foundation, 40335 Winchester RD #E-115, Temecula, CA 92591. Please include a note with the recipients contact information. 

If you’d rather have us send an email, just provide an email address and we will take care of the rest. We will not add your recipient to our mailing or emailing lists. 


Year End Planning

Have you moved? Prefer to receive your year-end contribution statement by email? Email Lori.Baxter@chinaorphans.org and let me know! Statements are sent out the third week in January by mail. Update your records now by visiting our self service portal at chinaorphans.org/contact-us. You will need to provide your email address to log in. You can even check your donation history while you are logged in! 

If you prefer, call Lori at PHF at 866-526-3712 or email her directly. Your donations make a difference in the life of an orphan in China. 


Access Your Account Online

Great News! We have updated our online donation system, and you now can access your account online. For your security, you will need to request access through a link on our website here. You’ll be asked to provide your email address, and a link will be sent to you. For your security, that link is only good for 24 hours. But you can access your account as often as you want.

Use your self-service page to:

  • Update your physical address
  • Update your email address
  • Change your online donations
  • View your donation history
  • Print receipts for past donations

If you have any questions, please email Lori.Baxter@chinaorphans.org.