Philip Hayden Foundation


From the Heart


Summertime! Hot days and nights. How do you get relief from the heat? Shade from a leafy tree, cool drinks, fans, air conditioning, or water play? The kids and adults alike at Shepherd’s Field loved playing with water – tiny wading pools and water fights. The brief respite was energizing and encouraging. We all need a little break sometimes.

But people with disabilities do not always get a respite. July is disability awareness month. A disability is a physical or mental condition that limits a person’s movements, senses, or activities. Are you aware of those around you with disabilities?

Invisible Disabilities

Some disabilities are obvious – like limb differences and cerebral palsy. But others are nearly invisible, like hearing loss, impaired vision, autism, and seizures. Your donations to The Philip Hayden Foundation have provided hope for kids with invisible disabilities in China and will soon offer the same respite and hope to kids in Mexico.

graham wearing external hearing device on headband while working on wood puzzle

Graham has profound hearing loss. He lived in a silent world, unable to make his needs and wants to be known. His hearing loss impacted his verbal skills; how can you learn to speak if you cannot hear? Your donations provided an external hearing device and therapy to connect Graham with his world.

JiaYi has poor vision and struggles in school. Her impaired vision makes every task challenging, but her family could not afford medicine and therapy to improve her daily life. Your donations to PHF provided medication and treatment for JiaYi, and now she has hope for the future.

Autism, an invisible disability

Autism affects many children, and researchers are still unsure why the number of children affected by the disorder is rapidly growing worldwide. A spectrum disorder with varying severity, autism symptoms range from mild to debilitating. Learning is different for kids with autism but not impossible. Your donations fund teachers in a Montessori classroom in rural China, which changes the lives of kids with autism and other learning disabilities.

profile of Annie as she happily anticipates her future

And finally, seizure disorders are invisible disabilities. Here in the United States, seizures are often diagnosed and treated with medication. An episode can range from a mild absence seizure to a grand mal seizure. Seizure disorders affect learning and memory, and sometimes the side effects of the medications can be debilitating as well. Annie has a seizure disorder, and your donations provided her with medical treatment and vocational training. Annie is now living independently, thanks to you.

Philip Hayden Foundation continues to be committed to making a difference in the lives of vulnerable children, particularly those with disabilities. With your help, PHF will continue to improve the lives of children for the next 25 years.


Splashing the Heat Away – by Ally Jarvis


Summertime in Langfang is hot and muggy. The heat zaps the energy of kids and adults – and nearly everyone is cranky. Enter water play. A perfect way to cool down beat the heat, and brighten attitudes.

Therapy…In the Pools

There are no rules that require therapy to happen indoors, so on hot days, the PHF Therapy team would have therapy sessions outside…in the pool. This was a brand-new experience for Corey. Corey joined in on a therapy pool day during his first week at Shepherd’s Field. He was still a little nervous about this new journey, but once he sat on the slide that was far too small for him, his face lit up, and we all got a glimpse of Corey’s true spirit.

Unlike Corey, our typically smiley Simeon had a rocky relationship with pool days. He adamantly did not enjoy Aubrey – or anyone else – splashing around in the therapy pool. If a therapist sat with him on our lap, blocking all incoming water, he could enjoy playing with the floating cups.

Everyone knew to stay away from Jason once he got in the pool.  He always seemed to find a bucket to fill with water. Jason’s first target was usually Naomi, the Therapy Department leader, but they always seemed to team up in the end. At the end of each therapy pool day, one staff member was always unwillingly tossed in the pool; I was chosen on more than one occasion! The ayi’s tossed me in while the kids laughed and cheered. Therapy can be fun!

Children’s Day Celebrated with a Water Fight

June 1 is Children’s Day and would always be marked by the first major water fight of the season. It was the biggest water fight I have ever seen! It always started with testing out which pools hadn’t been popped in previous years! Our staff, visitors, and kids were equipped with water guns, buckets, and cups. Any vessel that would hold water was used as a weapon. We scattered buckets of water throughout the area for refilling on the go.

The kids didn’t hold back, so everyone was soaked head to toe. Someone gave Charissa the hose, and I was her first target, even though I was already drenched because Luke had just thrown a bucket of water on me.

I wasn’t the only one that was victim to the kids’ motivation; Lily was chased around by the boys and hid behind whoever was closest. Lily still got wet – but so did her living shield! These pool days and water fights always brought so much joy.  I’m not sure how they managed it, but our fantastic ayi’s always managed to get the kids into dry clothes!


Spotlight on Healing Homes in China


Philip Hayden Foundation is committed to providing medical care for vulnerable children. In some cases, we partner with existing charities, such as this Healing Home. Your donations to our medical fund are providing medication and care for these children.

Meet Galvis, a fireball on wheels. Galvis was born with spina bifida, but not much slows him down. He’s already practicing for the paralympics, challenging the other children riding bicycles. He raced them in his wheelchair, and he even used his chair to help push his friends in their toy car!

Your medical donations fund care and therapy for Galvis, giving him even more reason to grin.


A Fresh Look for PHF


We are excited to announce that work is underway on a fresh look for our website! The updated website will appear in September, be tailored for mobile use, and meet all recommended accessibility guidelines. Another feature will be the ability to accept Venmo, Apple Pay, or Google Pay when you make a donation from your mobile phone. 

The new layout will showcase the stories of children whose lives have been transformed. It will be even easier for you to share stories of kids still needing support to survive and thrive with your friends and family. 

 


From the Heart – by Tim Baker


As June is PTSD Awareness Month, I want to share the importance of supporting orphans and unsupported children who have experienced trauma in their lives. Trauma is the root cause of PTSD, whether from abuse, being abandoned, without a family, being born with a disability, or wondering where their next meal will come from. We all need to help these vulnerable kids feel safe and secure. 

Our new focus is to work and partner with existing local organizations to meet the physical and emotional needs of at-risk children and young adults. We will partner with organizations who hold our same values, assuring that funds raised will work directly to helping the children and not “overhead.” In China, we continue to utilize those good relationships developed over the past 25 years with hospitals and doctors in Beijing, assuring that the kids we help have access to the best possible care available.

Covid Lockdown in Beijing

Unfortunately, Beijing has shut down again because of strict zero Covid protocols. No one is allowed in or out of the city; people are to stay in their homes, get tested several times a week, and are even required passes to get groceries. These strict lockdown measures come more than two years after the first shutdown in February 2020. The steps make it impossible for kids from outside of Beijing to go to the hospitals in the city, and it continues to prevent adoptive families from entering the country to complete the adoption process of the children they have been matched with.  It’s clear that our world is still affected by Covid. Here in our region of Mexico, the mask mandate is still in full effect, and the local people are nearly all compliant. We’re able to travel about the country without restriction. We’re grateful for that and do not take it for granted. We continue to look for opportunities that fit into our mission to help kids affected by poverty, food insecurity, unmet medical and educational needs, and preparation for a successful life as an adult.

Together We Can Bring Hope and Healing

So as we acknowledge PTSD awareness month, we want to thank you for your sticking with and believing in us as we continue this journey to be a blessing to those who need love, safety, and security in their lives. Together we can bring hope and healing to this world.


Hope For JiaYi and Her Family


Over a decade ago, Rebekah was an intern at Philip Hayden Foundation. Her passion for orphans in China led her to start Hope Station, a 501c3 nonprofit. Hope Station recently established a Chinese NGO in Sichuan. Rebekah shared this story with PHF, and your donations have funded vision therapy for JiaYi.

JiaYi works hard on vision focusing task stringing beads

11-year-old JiaYi lives in the city with her mom, dad, and little sister. Her parents realized JiaYi wasn’t learning as fast as her peers when she was in kindergarten. After visiting the local hospital they learned that their daughter had a developmental delay.

“At that time, we didn’t really know anything,” her mom shared later. “We didn’t know what kind of treatment she needed and and we didn’t know how to teach her. We thought her condition was just fate and that we just needed to accept it.”

So we decided just to wait for her to grow up. We thought that if she could go to school, her situation would get better. So she went to a regular elementary school for four years, but we discovered her condition was getting more and more serious during that time.  She wasn’t able to keep up with her classes, so she was under a lot of pressure!  Finally, in September 2021, we transferred JiaYi to a special needs school for her to learn more self-management and life skills.

Family Support Improves Daily Life for JiaYi

A few months later, JiaYi’s family joined Hope Station’s Family Strengthening Program. With a new school and a new family support system, JiaYi’s life has improved significantly. She learns life skills at school, receives therapy regularly, and even has a new personal art teacher!

But JiaYi still had one big struggle: her vision. JiaYi’s vision was always poor, and her parents could tell it was hindering her ability to learn and enjoy her life. Her greatest love is art, and yet she can’t even clearly see what she is doing in front of her. When she goes to the zoo, she can only see the blurry shapes of the animals far away. JiaYi’s parents wanted to help her, but they could not afford the required vision therapy sessions and medicine.

PHF Donors Help JiaYi

JiaYi works on reading with Hope Station therapist

When The Philip Hayden Foundation heard about JiaYi’s need, we were excited to step in and help. Thanks to your donations, JiaYi will be able to receive vision therapy and medication! She’ll finally be able to see clearly the beauty around her that she already appreciates so much. It will also supercharge her learning and help her become more independent as she grows up.

Most importantly, with your generosity and partnership with Hope Station, JiaYi is growing up in a loving family who cares for her.

She said to her dad the other day: “I think the luckiest thing in the world is to be by mommy and daddy’s side.  So I think I am lucky too because you and mommy are always with me and love me so much!”

There’s no doubt that JiaYi will face more challenges ahead. But with such a loving family, and now that her family is equipped to support and lead her through these challenges, she will surely go far.

Her mom shared, “I hope that in the future, when my husband and I are old, she can take care of and support herself.”


Partnering with Healing Homes in China


The Philip Hayden Foundation will be supporting orphans with medical needs living at Hope Healing Homes in China. The orphans residing in the Healing Homes need medical care that cannot be met at their local orphanage. New Hope Foundation interacts closely with CWI staff and equips their own staff, providing intensive and thorough care in their facilities.

New Hope Foundation provides care and arranges medical and surgical treatment for orphaned children with special needs in addition to providing palliative care when appropriate. They currently have four facilities in the Henan Province of China, and also provide assistance to the Rainbow Center in Nanjing. In total, they provide care for about 150 precious children.

PHF will be partnering with in-country NGOs to provide direct help to orphans outside of Tianjin. The NGOs are chosen carefully to ensure the NGO reflects our values and that every dollar directly helps vulnerable orphans and children.


In Loving Memory


 Elizabeth (Beth) Mae Hayden Degeneffe 

 If you have been part of the PHF family for any length of time you probably know how the organization began with the untimely death of Tim and Pam Baker’s friend and coworker, Philip Hayden, in China in the fall of 1994. What you may not know however is that Philip’s sister Beth was a volunteer with us using her graphic design background to format the Heartbeat newsletter for nearly two years. We’re sad to tell you the news of her passing at the age of 58, way too young.

Beth was a cherished wife, a beloved mother, a precious daughter and sister, and dearest friend. She lived self-sacrificially in all she did, always thinking of others and God before herself. In life and in death, she was steadfast in faith and devotion to her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who sustained her through life and now rewards her in heaven. She will be greatly missed by everyone who knew her. Rest in Peace, Beth


Teddy Ling Dairong McKinney

Teddy surrounded by photos of his family

Some children just capture your heart. Teddy Ling Dairong captured the heart of many visitors to Shepherd’s Field, including mine.

Teddy was born in December 2007 and arrived at Shepherd’s Field when he was about one year old. Born with spastic cerebral palsy with developmental and cognitive delays, he also had great difficulty gaining and maintaining weight. Teddy loved playing in the pool, stroking our therapy dog, Zai, and swinging. He responded to nearly every conversation with a big smile. Teddy adored his primary caregiver, MengYan, and she loved him. The pair were inseparable.

Teddy on Gotcha Day with his parents

Teddy joined his forever family in early 2018 when he was ten years old. His forever family knew that Teddy needed lifelong care and that he would not have a long life. But they loved his sweet spirit and wanted him to be part of their family. Teddy was diagnosed with an extremely rare form of leukodystrophy called Pelizaeus Merzbacher Disease. It only affects boys, and the life span for the type he had was five years. Teddy was a resilient fighter and far outlived his expected lifespan.

As she shared Teddy’s passing in early May, Teddy’s mom shared with us “that he forever made us better, he was always happy and brought us so much joy. Our only regret is that we did not make him our son sooner.  He was so incredibly precious.” Teddy was a treasure, a beautiful soul, and he was a blessing to everyone he met. He brought pure joy to the McKinney family, and the love of God could always be felt through him. He will be missed.


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. 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.


From the Heart


Sweet anticipation. Hope and joy. The birth of a child brings so many complex emotions, and Lia’s family was no exception. Lia’s family had waited a long time to add a baby to their family and anticipated the birth just before the next Lunar New Year. But in mid-August, months before her due date, Lia was born.

Very tiny baby Lia just after birth with IV in her right arm

Babies born before 24 weeks gestation have less than a 50% chance of survival – even less if the birth weight is below 3 lbs. While we don’t know how early Lia was, we do know that she weighed a mere 2 lbs. At around 26 weeks gestation, the lungs begin to change, and the chance of survival of an infant at 26 weeks is now over 90%. Of course, this requires extensive, long-term medical care.

Facing an impossible medical expense to save Lia’s life

Lia’s family was faced with an impossible dilemma. Lia would need extensive medical care to have a chance to survive – but at a staggering cost of 20,000RMB. Lia’s family was very poor, and there was no way to raise such a vast sum.

The Neonatal doctor at the local hospital called his friend, Nurse Angela, that hot August night. He shared the heartbreaking story and the love this young couple had for their baby girl. Lia was experiencing respiratory distress syndrome because her lungs had not yet developed. Each breath was a struggle for the tiny girl, and she was using every ounce of strength. She needed to be helped immediately to survive.

Baby Lia faces a new challenge

8 month old baby Lia looks happy and healthy

Nurse Angela began making phone calls and looking for donations to help this sweet girl survive. The funds were found, Lia received treatment for her lungs, and she began to grow. The story doesn’t end here. Lia and her family are now facing a new challenge – one where you can be the one to transform a life.

You see, babies born so very early often have issues with vision. And the treatments to help them breathe and survive can also affect their vision. Lia has a problem with her eyes, and it needs to be diagnosed by specialists in Beijing. Once there is a diagnosis, a treatment plan can be formed. But it will cost $8000 to get Lia and her mama to Beijing for the testing, diagnosis, and treatment. Your donation to our medical fund can help transform the life of Lia and her family. If you’d like to help, choose medical when you donate.


Dental Outreach in Mexico


volunteer dentist surrounded by kids while teaching about dental care

On Easter Sunday, while many of us enjoyed time with friends and family, Tim Baker and his son Nate participated in a dental hygiene outreach in Pueblo UNIDO. This community is just south of Merida, the capital of Yucatan, Mexico, where Tim and his family now reside.

The day was hot as daytime temperatures are around 100 degrees this time of year. The tiny makeshift homes in this area are made of scraps of lumber, cardboard, and anything else that can be repurposed for walls and a roof. The homes do not have windows and rarely have more than a dirt floor. There are no toilets – and no safe drinking water. Yet these families are determined to stay together. As Tim spends more time in the community, he finds new ways for The Philip Hayden Foundation to help struggling families with vulnerable children. Every individual has value and significance, whether rich or poor. It is a privilege to transform lives through humanitarian aid and medical care.

Teaching dental hygiene

On this scorching day, a dentist, a doctor, and two nurses volunteered their time to teach dental hygiene to the community. Entire families were interested and everyone listened attentively. The dentist taught everyone how to brush their teeth and why that is so important. Left untreated, tooth decay and gum disease can lead to more than bad breath. It can contribute to sickness and even death. Every attendee, young and old, received a new toothbrush and toothpaste. This seemingly small outreach will impact lives. Thank you for your continued support as PHF discovers new ways to help vulnerable children.


Strengthening Families in Sichuan


Over a decade ago, Rebekah was an intern at Philip Hayden Foundation. Her passion for orphans in China led her to start Hope Station, a 501c3 nonprofit. Hope Station recently established a Chinese NGO in Sichuan. Rebekah shared this story with PHF, and your donations have funded therapy for Hengheng for the next year.

Hengheng and his therapist smile for the camera

She stepped into the office in tears. She could barely keep the words of desperation from spilling out, as she shared about her son. At the time, HengHeng was 3 years old. He’d been diagnosed with Autism a year before, and his parents were still struggling with the weight of his diagnosis.

HengHeng ran back and forth across the Hope Station office with a lollipop held tightly in his fist. The Hope Station staff sat with his mama, eager to listen and encourage.

Serving children with special needs and their families

Hope Station serves children with special needs and their families in Sichuan province. Families come to Hope Station afraid, lonely, and desperate for help. Many parents have unsupportive extended families, fears about their child’s future, and some have even considered giving up their child to the local orphanage under the assumption that they’d be better off there.

HengHeng’s parents were all too familiar with these struggles. His dad shared, “For a family like ours, seeing our child grow day by day but not learning the skills he should be learning at his age, it’s really an ordeal… As his parents, seeing the gap between him and the other kids his age makes us feel very anxious.”

Family Strengthening Program

That day in the Hope Station office, HengHeng’s family joined the Family Strengthening Program… and everything changed.

Hengheng enjoys jumping as he works with his occupational therapist

HengHeng was enrolled in weekly speech and occupational therapy. His parents and grandma started receiving training about Autism and got access to other special needs resources. The whole family started getting home visits from a Family Care Specialist, and they met other families with children who have special needs.

HengHeng started showing improvements very soon after starting therapy.

He has learned how to use chopsticks to eat, when he used to just grab food with his hands, so that’s some progress… And when we have him put on his clothes, socks, and shoes, he can basically do it now. “

Thanks to the generosity of donors like you, Philip Hayden Foundation has partnered with Hope Station to provide these therapy and medical services for HengHeng and other children like him. They are learning and growing week after week, and their families are finding hope again.

HengHeng’s family has been in the Family Strengthening Program for almost two years now. HengHeng is making progress every day, his mama doesn’t feel so alone anymore, and his dad knows how to help his family into the future.

We will patiently continue to guide HengHeng, and hope that one day he’ll be able to live independently. That’s our greatest wish.”

Find out more about Hope Station on their website, or follow them on Facebook or Instagram. PHF funded therapy for Hengheng for the next year, and we will be providing resources for additional Hope Station kids with medical or therapy needs. Watch for more stories!


A Season of Renewal


The Philip Hayden Foundation has been helping orphans in China for over 25 years. Our passion from the very beginning was to transform the lives of the most vulnerable children. In 1995, the orphanages were overcrowded and understaffed. We brought food and diapers. Then we held babies and toddlers, played games with children, and looked deeply into their eyes. This kind of connection helps a child feel valued and loved.

Children born with disabilities were often unable to receive treatment, severely limiting their quality of life. In the U.S., we have a safety net for necessary medical care, even if the family cannot afford the medical costs. It is not always so in other countries. As the Child Welfare System changed to meet the needs of the orphans in care, a new need developed: care for orphans with severe disabilities.

As the number of orphans exploded in the early 2000s, so did the need for foster homes for the orphans with the most severe medical conditions. So PHF opened foster homes and established partnerships with hospitals and doctors. Hundreds of children passed through our doors, their lives transformed through love, medical care, and education.

Supporting Chinese Charities

The number of orphans in China has declined over the past ten years, and it is time for PHF to adapt again to meet the current needs of orphans in China. Chinese charities (NGOs) have opened to help orphans and unsupported children in many communities. PHF will partner with local NGOs, offering training and resources. The needs are particularly significant in rural communities, where the number of orphans and unsupported children stretches the limited resources of local social care centers.

The Philip Hayden Foundation will also work to transform the lives of the most vulnerable children in Mexico, partnering with existing efforts whenever possible. Our passion for providing hope to children is unchanged, but we are again in a season of renewal. Thank you for your continued support for the most vulnerable children, both in China and in Mexico.


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. 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.

From the Heart

Baker Family in Mexico 2022

Greetings from Mexico to all our friends, adoptive families, and supporters! After living in China for nearly three decades, we returned to the US in February 2020 because of Covid. Since then, China has been closed to travel and we are unable to get new visas.

The Philip Hayden Foundation maintains a small staff in China and continues to support orphaned, disabled, and marginalized children and young adults through our various projects in China. We will continue to share more stories about our current projects in China.

Since China has been closed to travel for the past two years, we have been fervently pursuing other opportunities to help vulnerable kids – wherever in the world they live. Mexico has always had a special place in our hearts. Pam and I traveled here more than 40 years ago and always felt that someday we would be called back here to serve the people.

China…And Mexico

That someday has finally come as Pam and I, along with our 24-year-old son Nate, recently moved to Mexico to show the Mexican people God’s amazing love. Pam and I love to be directly involved with the kids we serve.  We’re here in Mexico right now, reaching out to those in need. Our hearts are for the orphans, the disabled, and the marginalized. We bring that same God-given love we have for the people of China to the Mexican people. Covid may have closed the door and prevented our return to China, but a new door has opened for us, rekindling a God-given love and compassion for the people of Mexico.

You may have chosen to support PHF because we work with orphans in China. Others may be excited about the opportunity to help vulnerable kids wherever they are. Would you take a moment and let us know what you think? Join the conversation!

~Tim Baker


One At a Time in Asia – Meet Maria

Last summer, nurse Angela had a longing to set up special education classes for the orphans. She started asking around in the local community to see if anyone knew any special education teachers – but there was no one.

Maria was a middle school teacher at a local school for many years. She heard about the orphanage from her son, a regular volunteer at the social care center, for several years.

At that time, teacher Maria, a newcomer to the center, didn’t have the confidence to teach the orphans as she had never done anything like that before. The task seemed overwhelming. But as she began to get to know the kids, her mind changed. Like so many volunteers who have come over the years, she soon discovered just how precious these children really are.  

Then, teacher Maria and another teacher, Grace, set up the special education classrooms. With enthusiasm and a bit of fear, and without much experience, they began teaching the kids. They both were amazed how the kids’ minds were like sponges absorbing knowledge. 

At first, they taught simple things such as what’s a tree, what’s a road, and what’s a car. All those things are essential to know, but they still wanted to teach more. So they decided to teach life skills in the classroom related to the children’s daily routine. After that, they added music classes, dancing classes, and art classes where the kids could become creative through the arts and learning games. 

Creativity Encourages Learning

Amazingly, as the kids engage in creative learning, they grow confident and blossom. Their ability to learn expanded!

These two amazing women, Maria and Grace, have been teaching for more than ten months now. It’s easy to see that these ladies possess a great passion for teaching the kids.  We are so blessed to have them there making such great progress with the kids’ education.

These women are not satisfied; they want to do more. Now they are asking around to find more resources to learn more about special education, especially Montessori so that they can make a difference in the life of each child. Your continued support makes this possible.

Click here if you’d like to receive emails with stories and photos from One At a Time in Asia.


Red Thread Center Teaches Skills


Have you heard the Chinese red thread parable? It goes something like this: There is an invisible, unbreakable red thread that connects all those who are destined to be together, intertwining our hearts. This parable often reflects the adoption of a child and the spiritual connection between a parent and child. But it can also reflect the complex tapestry of community. As our lives intertwine, the bond is stronger, and we can support each other.

Teaching vocational skills

Over the years, you may have visited our campus in Tianjin and would have seen our Red Thread Banner Factory on the third floor of the vocational center. The workshop not only sewed beautiful banners but also made screen-print art and hand-crafted leatherwork. As a learning center and a fabrication center, many teens and young adults learned fine motor and work skills and expressed creativity.

Just after the Spring Festival ended this year in February, The Philip Hayden Foundation expanded our Red Thread Factory from Tianjin to the city of Beijing. The new workshop is called the Red Thread Arts and Crafts Center. The new center will also fabricate leatherwork like billfolds and keychains, screen-print art on T-shirts and other media, and sew banners. After learning one of these vocational skills, young adults with disabilities will have the opportunity to hone their skills. The extra experience will improve their ability to get a job and be contributing members of society.


Maya Vision 2022


Tim Baker with young girl in Yucatan

Here in Yucatán, The Philip Hayden Foundation reaches out to vulnerable children and marginalized people who desperately need our love and support. There are many at-risk children within both the local Mexican and Mayan communities. In May, we will be working on an exciting health project called Maya Vision 2022 in the Yucatán state. The goal is to provide visual health services for marginalized children, teens, and adults from the impoverished Mayan community in eastern Yucatán.

We are not doing this project alone! The Philip Hayden Foundation will be working together with an incredible organization – Sight is a Right.

Sight is a Right, a US 501(c)3 nonprofit foundation, provides eye care services to vulnerable people in need and has since 2009. In fact, they have provided services to over 50,000 people who did not have access to eye care.

Mayan girl with optician

This project will provide eye screenings, prescription glasses, reading glasses, sunglasses, pathology referrals, medications, and nursing services. Nursing services include blood pressure and blood sugar screening and even eye surgery for those affected by diabetes and glaucoma. The project will take place from Saturday, May 14 to Sunday, May 22, in the community of Valladolid, located two hours east of the capital city Merida.

Free Vision Care for Mayan Children

We will serve between 2,000 – 3,000 Mayan children, teens, and adults by providing free eye examinations and other health services. The project has many volunteers, including doctors, nurses, technicians, and others from all over North America and Mexico, working together to serve these vulnerable kids and adults in need. Will you support this uplifting project? We need to raise US$5,000 to help support this life-changing project for the Mayan people. Any amount you can donate to give the gift of vision to children in need is greatly appreciated. You can donate online for Mayan Vision 2022. Thank you for supporting this project in Mexico!


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. 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.

From the Heart

Spring is in the air! March marks the beginning of a season of renewal and hope. We often have one or two lingering snowstorms in our area, blanketing the newly blooming crocuses. Thankfully, the flowers are resilient, and the snow is short-lived. More than anything else, I feel hope.

There has been a long winter season for orphan care in China. The travel restrictions due to Covid have limited medical care, therapy, and even completion of adoptions. Many foreign charities have had to close their doors inside China, but new Chinese Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) are emerging. These new beginnings inspire hope.

“Good deeds do not ask about the future. I only want to keep doing a little better.”

Nurse Angela

The Philip Hayden Foundation has connected with one such NGO in rural Asia. In this village, a local nurse, Angela, and her sisters began helping orphans and unsupported children nearly a decade ago. As the number of children with severe disabilities increased in the past few years, their meager resources have been stretched to the limit. But this woman’s passion for helping others inspires others to help. When asked why she gives so much, Nurse Angela says, “Good deeds do not ask about the future. I only want to keep doing a little better.”

Several local groups now help where they can. One local organization provides rice, oil, and other daily supplies. Another Chinese NGO supplies diapers and wipes. The pediatricians and nurses at the local hospital volunteer their time to train caregivers and supervise the daily work. And an NGO in Shanghai donated the resources to set up a Montessori classroom and trained two teachers.

Montessori Classrooms Energize Learners

Why is a Montessori classroom in this community so exciting? A recent study showed that children attending a Montessori classroom for at least two years had higher psychological well-being as adults than those without any time in a Montessori classroom. Self-directed learning builds confidence and interest in new activities. In addition, education is at the child’s pace and can be adapted for those with disabilities. To learn more about Montessori classrooms, check out https://montessori-nw.org/about-montessori-education.

Unfortunately, there have not been enough funds to add teachers or retain enough caregivers and therapists. This Social Care Center cannot survive on volunteers alone – even passionate volunteers. Philip Hayden Foundation is privileged to join the work in this area, providing funding for Montessori teachers and trained caregivers. Your continued support inspires others to give of their time and resources. Thank you!


Journey to Faith

Gotcha Day for Faith

We adopted Faith (Georgie Wei Jia Xi) on her 4th birthday, November 9th, 2017. After adopting Faith, personally, I have changed in many ways. For starters, my patience grew. I naturally tend to want things to happen in a time and manner that is conducive to my wants and desires. But with adoption, especially internationally, that isn’t possible, and patience becomes a necessity.

I also have grown stronger in ways I never thought I would have to, because when you have a daughter with a severe medical condition you have no other choice. I’ve become an advocate, more knowledgeable (specifically in pediatric cardiology), and a homeschool mom due to Covid. I’ve realized I’m more capable in areas I’ve never thought I could be or ever would be.

Family Closeness

As a family, we’ve grown closer. Being a family of seven, we have to all chip in and lend a helping hand. Faith’s four older brothers have also gained an understanding of little girls, which is quite precious. My husband and I have also grown closer because, again, when you have a child with Faith’s medical condition, you lean on each other and work together to meet her needs. Also, just the process itself caused us to rely on each other’s strengths, along with all the unknowns. We all have changed, but the beautiful thing is, it’s been for the good even if at the moment it doesn’t seem so. In times where we had to give more of our attention to Faith, it has taught our other children that the world doesn’t revolve around them and what helping others truly looks like. I will never regret that.

Faith is such an amazing little girl. She’s resilient and so physically tough. Faith has such a great sense of humor and caught on to teasing pretty quickly.  She loves music and laughs at almost everything. And she can handle a horse like it’s no big deal and loves adventure, such as rollercoasters and anything related to water. The best thing about her is how much she loves touching. Cuddling is her favorite and before we adopted her, one of my fears was that she’d lack the ability to attach to us. She definitely displayed the opposite.

Faith's Forever Family

The rest of our family consists of four boys, all older than Faith. Our two oldest were also adopted, but they were family members on my husband’s side. Our family ranges from 21 years old to eight years old. At one point we had a child in preschool, elementary school, middle school, high school, and college. We like to say we live in organized chaos. We are always doing something or going somewhere, whether enjoying time at our lake house or at some sort of sporting event watching one of our other kids.

Rewards are Worth the Hard Work

One thing I want other families to learn from our experience is that you can do it! It isn’t always easy, especially in the beginning, but it’s worth it! Also, stay away from negativity. Everyone’s experience is different, but there is support. You just have to keep looking until you find it.

Joy filled Faith on swing

Speaking of it not always being easy, for us the first couple of months was the hardest. Faith did act out some, but how could she not?  Her entire world changed in an instant. The language barrier makes it even harder.  One way we struggled was that Faith tried to control what she could through eating. She’d say no to almost everything and it was not only hard but also frustrating. Finally, after about two weeks, she caved and now it’s more like what doesn’t she eat? We also had to learn to be ok with the slow progress regarding learning a new language and assimilating. It seemed like it would take forever, but it does eventually happen…there’s that patience thing I was talking about.

We knew there would be challenges, we just weren’t sure what exactly they’d be. Through it all, we had each other to rely on, support of family and friends, and most importantly our faith. ~ Nicole


Lasting Connections

In September of 2016, two volunteers from the UK joined the staff for a year. Matt and Georgie left full-time jobs to invest in the children at Shepherd’s Field Children’s Village. In many ways, it was a lifetime ago, and yet Georgie says, “It feels like yesterday! We miss it so much!

Matt, Georgie, and Faith enjoying water play

Matt and Georgie both pitched in wherever they were needed. Georgie thought she would be teaching preschool, but she ended up spending much of her time as our hospitality coordinator. If you visited SFCV in 2017, you most likely worked with Georgie. Her kindness, energy, and smile are unforgettable! As well as lending a hand wherever needed, Matt stepped up to design and publish our printed newsletter, Heartbeat, for the year – even though he had no prior experience with our publishing platform. He was also instrumental in a significant update to our website. When Georgie and Matt reluctantly returned to the UK after a year, Matt continued his role on the newsletter for another eight months – a half a world away.

While Matt and Georgie were at SFCV, they connected with little Wei Jia Xi, also known as Georgie, while at Shepherd’s Field. Wei Jia Xi was adopted a few months after Matt and Georgie returned to the UK. However, a happy reunion was in the works. Matt and Georgie traveled to the US to visit Wei Jia Xi, now Faith, and her family. You can see the joy on all their faces!


Luke’s Legacy

luke on swing

In our last issue, we shared many memories of Luke Tianyi and his impact on so many lives. PHF is thrilled to announce that Madison Adoption Associates (MAA) created an adoption grant in his honor: Luke’s Legacy. Luke’s Legacy will be a grant for the adoption of older boys.

Here’s what MAA shared on their blog:

“While we never met Luke, we knew through colleagues that he was a sweet, kindhearted, gentle soul who loved to love, and loved to be loved. Thanks to our amazing friends at Shepherd’s Field Children’s Village, Luke was able to experience the love of a family throughout his short life. Maybe it wasn’t a traditional family, but it was his family nonetheless. While we are so grateful that Luke lived somewhere where he was adored until the very end, the sadness is still very real knowing that Luke never got to experience his forever family. He would have blessed them beyond measure.”

“Older boys often wait the longest for a family, yet we know so many wonderful boys like Luke are waiting and hoping for someone to take a chance on them. This $1,500 grant (in addition to MAA’s $500 grant for children 8 and older) will be available to qualified families who submit a Letter of Intent, which is approved by the country, for a boy in any of our programs who is 12 or older.”

The staff at MAA clearly has a passion for kids who wait. This passion inspires hope – hope for more older boys like Luke get to experience the love of a forever family. Thank you, MAA!


Year End Planning

Year-end contribution statements were mailed on January 21. If your physical address was not in our records, emails were sent on January 24. If you are missing your statement, please email Lori.Baxter@chinaorphans.org and let me know! 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. 


One At a Time in Asia

Would you like to make a difference for a child in rural Asia? In 2022, PHF will be supporting community-based workspaces. Over 80% of children with disabilities in China live in rural areas, which also have lower income. Over 70 orphans and unsupported children live in this particular region, and most of them are boys. 

There are over 40 staff members in this small village providing care for these vulnerable children. The One At a Time in Asia project through PHF is sponsoring 25 front-line nursing staff, therapists, and special education teachers. These dedicated workers provide direct care for the children in their care. Among the 30 children with moderate to severe disabilities, many of whom require 24 hour care, are kids with cerebral palsy. They need help with changing positions, moving, stretching, and bathing. are plans to grow this class to up to 30 students. We’ll keep you updated! 

To protect the privacy of this project, limited information will be available on our website. Sign up email updates for more complete updates.

If you’d like to learn more about this project or other ways to get involved, visit chinaorphans.org/get-involved. 


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.

Happy Year of the Tiger

From the Heart – Remembering Luke Tianyi

Luke as an infant

I first met Luke Tinyi fourteen years ago when he, as a one-month-old infant, arrived at Shepherd’s Field Children’s Village. He came into our care because he was born with a complicated heart defect. 

At that time, none of us would have imagined that this precious little angel would spend the next 12 years of his life in our care. During those years, he saw countless housemates get adopted into forever families. It wasn’t that Luke was undesirable for adoption. Quite the contrary, there were plenty of families who wanted to adopt this sweet and kind little boy. The problem was related to his hukou, the official registration needed to be eligible for adoption. 

I have so many fond memories of Luke growing up at SFCV. At first glance, he came across as being kind of shy, especially around new people. But as you got to know him, he was actually very engaging and funny. As he grew older, he was like a big brother to his housemates, even helping the nannies take care of them. He loved his teachers at Little Lambs and school in general. They played a crucial role in shaping and molding his character. Besides his love for school and being a helper at home, he loved playing games, reading books, and playing with LEGOs. 

Another fond memory I have was that Luke and I surprised each other during one of our fall party celebrations when we both showed up to the party wearing the same costumes. We didn’t plan it – it just happened. That year we both dressed as pirates, and we had so much fun pretending to be pirates battling each other with our plastic swords. 

Luke the Performer

Some of my fondest memories of Luke were during our International Children’s Day celebrations. Luke was quite the superstar, and he loved performing. If you ever attended one of these special Children’s Day parties, I’m pretty sure you would remember Luke. Always the constant perfect performer. The first year we did a fashion show as part of the activities, stealing the show with his infectious smile and a tip of his fedora as he walked the catwalk. The audience loved it so much that they even did an encore catwalk, and he never missed a beat. He was just as professional the second time around. 

One of my more recent memories took place in January of 2020 when Luke went into the hospital in Beijing for what would be his final heart surgery. This one was to help improve his oxygen level. The surgery took place in early February and was, by all accounts, a success. While visiting him in the hospital, I remember playing cards with him, and I lost every time. His face would light up as he won each hand. By the way, he was really good at it. I was genuinely trying to win. 

Luke the Kindhearted

In the past couple of years, he developed a love for caring for plants, playing Wuziqi (Chinese chess-like game played with black and white stones), and he continued his passion for reading. He took good care of himself by making his bed, folding his clothes, and putting things in their proper place. Luke also helped his younger roommates when they needed it. He was one of the kindest, most loving kids to ever come through our doors. 

On January 9, Luke was taken to the hospital for a medical emergency, and I regret to inform you that his life ended there. His death came as a shock and was heartbreaking to all who knew and cared for him. There will be no more fashion show catwalks, no more dress-up parties, and no more card games for us. Not in this life anyway. I know Luke had a good life and compared to most orphans, a great life. He knew he was loved and felt secure in that. I’m so happy to have been part of his life, and I know everyone on our SFCV team echos that sentiment. His Chinese name, Tianyi, means God’s will. Having said that, I think he was needed elsewhere. I can imagine him playing Wuziqi in heaven and probably winning every time. 

We are missing you, Luke.

By Tim Baker

The Leader of the Pack

Luke and his group of friends in a golf cart with Dustin

“If you had the pleasure of visiting Shepherd’s Field/7Acres in the spring of 2018, you would likely have encountered a gang of six 10-year-old boys. Known to stash squirt guns around campus for easy retrieval at opportune times, or beg for golf cart rides, this gaggle of friends was always palling around. The leader of this group was undoubtedly Luke. The bonds between these boys were deep. I can only imagine how it must have felt to experience total acceptance- despite a disability, despite not having a typical family. Friends that understand you. Luke fostered those friendships. I know that through those friendships, he provided love, hope, and trust for his friends that will never be forgotten.” – Dustin and Katy


Luke the Helper

Luke and Connor

“After school was over, while others would go home or play on the playground, Luke would come to the greenhouse. He would give me a grin, grab a broom, and help me finish my work for the day, no matter how long it took. I’d hoist him up on my shoulders, and we would walk around SFCV, talking until it began to get dark. He was intelligent, outgoing, and a leader, but his selflessness and kindness will always stick with me.”– Connor


Luke the Big Brother

Luke was the ‘big brother’ to all the kids at PHF. He was one of the first people the children in his house would run to for comfort, and he was always willing to help his friends with schoolwork. 

One of the best moments I shared with Luke was when I was interning in the Little Lambs School. Luke wanted to help me buy Christmas gifts for everyone in the class; he was so excited to pick out gifts for his friends that we ended up buying three times as many gifts as we had planned.

One of my favorite memories of Luke is when the school children went on a field trip to an indoor park. Luke and Francis decided to play a ton of arcade games together; Luke was so happy to spend time with his buddy. Even so, he ended up giving his last few arcade coins to some of the younger kids so they could also share in the fun.” – Annie


Year End Planning

Year-end contribution statements were sent by mail on January 21. If your physical address was not in our records, an email statement was sent on January 24. If you are missing your statement, please email Lori.Baxter@chinaorphans.org and let me know! 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. 


One At a Time in Asia

Would you like to make a difference for a child in rural Asia? In 2022, PHF will be supporting community-based workspaces. Over 80% of children with disabilities in China live in rural areas, which also have lower income. Over 70 orphans and unsupported children live in this particular region, and most of them are boys. 

There are over 40 staff members in this small village providing care for these vulnerable children. The One At a Time in Asia project through PHF is sponsoring 25 front-line nursing staff, therapists, and special education teachers. These dedicated workers provide direct care for the children in their care. Among the 30 children with moderate to severe disabilities, many of whom require 24 hour care, are kids with cerebral palsy. They need help with changing positions, moving, stretching, and bathing. 

A Montessori Resource Classroom for early education started recently, and the first group of children are attending. There are plans to grow this class to up to 30 students. We’ll keep you updated! 

To protect the privacy of this project, limited information will be available on our website. Sign up email updates for more complete updates.

If you’d like to learn more about this project or other ways to get involved, visit chinaorphans.org/get-involved. 


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 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.

From the Heart

Many of you live in the United States, as I do and will celebrate Thanksgiving this month. This is one of America’s most beloved holidays, because it’s a day set aside to give thanks for all our blessings. Often, we’re the most grateful for our families, and I’m no different. But beyond my immediate family, I’m also grateful for my Philip Hayden Foundation (PHF) family.

Isolation and uncertainty have heavily colored the last few years and affected all of our daily lives. To liberate ourselves, mental health experts remind us to practice gratitude, which can reduce anxiety and depression, and increase happiness. They often recommend writing down three things each day in a gratitude journal. However, if expressing gratitude is helpful, what if we also acted on our gratitude? Gratitude in action is thoughtful, creates change and helps others. The action can be big or small. It is often a gift of time or talent, but it can also be a monetary gift and always comes from the heart.

We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude

Cynthia Ozick

“We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude,” says Cynthia Ozick, and that certainly rings true for me. Our family closeness – both emotionally and physically – is a real blessing, and something I cherish but sometimes overlook. There’s a sweet give-and-take in helping each other, in listening well and in connectedness. A recent study in Pediatrics noted that one U.S. child loses a parent or caregiver for every four Covid19-associated deaths. This means that from April 2020 to June 2021, more than 140,000 children 18 and under lost a parent or a caregiving grandparent who provided a home and basic care. The loss of a parent during childhood has a dramatic, lifelong impact.

Every Child Matters

Today, there are more than 600,000 orphans living in government orphanages in China, and nearly all have disabilities. In addition to those 600,000, there are another 500,000 that are de facto – or legitimate – orphans. China’s Ministry of Civil Affairs defines a de facto orphan as a child where one or both parents are unable to provide support because they’re ill, disabled or in prison. Beyond a need for basic care, orphans of all stripes need love, a sense of belonging and a purpose in life. We all need to know that we matter.

That’s what I love about our PHF family members, who believe that each child in China waiting for a Forever Family matters. And while we can’t help every child, we make a lasting difference in the lives of the ones we can help. Your actions reveal your heart. Some people pray, some donate time or money, some adopt or help others to adopt, and some share stories with the world. I believe all these actions come from your hearts of gratitude, and make a difference in children’s lives. Thank you for being part of our wonderful family!


Robert is Grateful

My name is Robert Powell, and I came home from Shepherd’s Field at eight years old. I’ve been with my awesome family for about five years now. I have five other siblings adopted from China. There are ten kids total in our big and fun family. I have Arthrogryposis. It affects all the joints in my body. I had amputations of both my legs at age nine. I had more surgeries on one arm and one wrist at age ten. I now walk on two prosthetic legs and use my wheelchair for long distances. I will be fourteen years old in December. Life is great for me! I enjoy reading, art, Legos, and playing many different games. Lately, we have played a Dominos game called Chicken Feet. My favorite subject in home school is Math.

My parents and I have learned a lot in our faith. We have gone through many challenges together. We are all learning to “do hard things” with Jesus’ help. When I came home, I learned that I am loved, and precious. I learned that I can trust my parents. We all get different medical care and counseling to help us understand big feelings. I think this helped me a lot.

“I am so thankful that I know Jesus and that God gave me a loving family. I am grateful for my loving parents and good doctors who help me. I know that God has a plan for me, and that I wasn’t forsaken. He knew me even before I was born. I want God to use my life and my story for His glory.

-Robert Powell

Charlie Gains Freedom through Therapy

October was Bone and Joint Health Awareness Month and we’d like to highlight sweet Charlie as a “poster boy” for the success of physical therapy. Charlie was born with arthrogryposis as well as bi-lateral clubbed foot, which was surgically corrected. When he first arrived at Shepherd’s Field, he was immobile. After surgery, our staff worked diligently to help him see his worth, and to encourage him to be as independent as possible. He progressed from a wheelchair to a specialized walker, and his success resulted in a huge, new smile!

Charlie learns to use dressing aid with Occupational Therapist

Charlie then started intensive therapy, where he worked on mobility and flexibility – and he made great progress. We were all proud and amazed at his perseverance, even though not every day was a good day – but there was always tomorrow. To help make it all possible, donors like you generously provided various dressing aids and a specialized walker, so that Charlie could become more independent.

Our Bright Stars Occupational Therapist worked diligently with Charlie to improve his fine motor skills, and despite the difficulty, Charlie has beautiful handwriting. On one occasion, a therapist constructed an adaptive baseball bat for Charlie, so he could learn how to play the game. It wasn’t easy, but we all had a fun time chasing after balls and trying not to get hit once Charlie started swatting home runs!


Bone and Joint Disorders

This month we’re focusing on joint and bone disorders – two of the most common disabilities we see at Shepherd’s Field. And the two most common ailments? Arthrogryposis and clubfoot.

Arthrogryposis

Arthrogryposis (arth-ro-grip-OH-sis), also called arthrogryposis multiplex congenita (AMC), is a term used to describe a variety of conditions involving multiple joint contractures (or stiffness). A contracture is a condition where the range of motion of a joint is limited. It may be unable to fully or partially extend or bend.

While there is no cure, quality of life can be improved through therapy and using adaptive aids. Both physical therapy and occupational therapy are recommended to improve range of motion and foster independence. Sometimes surgery is also recommended to lengthen tendons, remodel joints, lengthen limbs or even correct the spine. The severity varies, so each case is unique. About one baby in 3,000 is born with AMC.

Clubfoot

toddler with clubfoot

Clubfoot is often caused by a shortened Achilles tendon, which causes the foot to turn in and under, and affects twice as many boys as girls. One foot or both feet point down and in, and the toes point toward the opposite leg – the bottom of the feet face inward. Treatment – sometimes surgery – is needed to correct this condition.

A clubfoot cannot be straightened by simply moving it around. The tendons on the back and inside of the foot and ankle are shorter than typical, while the tendons on the front and outside are too long and stretched out. In the U.S., treatment usually begins one week after birth. A series of castings are used, followed by bracing. If treatment doesn’t begin this early, a series of surgeries are needed. The long-term prognosis is good, with most children eventually wearing regular shoes and participating in normal daily activities and sporting events.

Over the years, many children with clubfoot have called Shepherd’s Field home. Your donations have provided surgery and/or therapy for Charlie, Aubrey, Robert, Samuel and dozens of others. To learn more about arthrogryposis or clubfoot, check out seattlechildrens.org or hopkinsmedicine.org.


share gratitude on Giving Tuesday

Give on Giving Tuesday

November marks the traditional beginning of the holiday season in the U.S., and the Tuesday following Thanksgiving is now referred to as Giving Tuesday, falling on November 30 this year. Facebook will again be matching donations on Giving Tuesday, and the Philip Hayden Foundation (PHF) will use your donations to help orphans in a rural area in China.

Over the past two years, PHF has continued to search for and expand its opportunities to make a difference in the lives of needy children throughout China, Asia, and the rest of the world. The Chinese government has worked hard to improve living conditions in its orphanages, and now many of these institutions have enough resources to meet children’s basic needs and provide education and therapy as well.

At-Risk Children Need Your Help

Many countries in Asia are now addressing the problem of specific children who are unable to live with their parents, due to a number of reasons. The parents may still be living but are ill, disabled, in prison or otherwise unable to care for their children. Some regions encourage group foster homes to care for these children. But resources are limited, and these at-children, who are called de facto orphans, need your help. 

Our director, Lily, recently visited a foster home in a rural area in Asia that takes in these orphans. This foster home partners with a local hospital, but needs help meeting the basic needs of the children in their care. Lily noted that the caregivers show Father’s love to the children in their care. Your donations will provide food, caregivers, and training for new caregivers. Will you join us? Please give to help One at a Time in Asia.


We Want to Hear From You!

To share a story or ask a question, direct message us on Facebook or email Lori and Ally at media@chinaorphans.org You can be sure we will not share your comments and stories without your permission. What you share with us can help shape our future changing the lives of orphans 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.