For those of you who know Christella, you know what a blessing she is, and without a doubt, she holds a special place in your heart. So Brad and I would like to take some time and introduce her those who have not yet met her.
Christella was born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti and the first time we heard her story it broke our hearts, and we just wanted to hold her tight in hopes that she would instantly feel our love and know that she was safe and finally home with family. NO child should ever have to endure the life she lived. By the age of 8, she was living on the streets, alone where she fought to survive for three years. By the age of 12 Christella had moved into a Christian orphanage, Child Hope International. It was there for the first time in her life she was cared for, respected, had a purpose in life, and was loved. It was there at Child Hope International that she became a Christian. It was there that she met her future American parents, Ron and Kathy Goodrich.
Ron and Kathy first met Christella in 2011, while they were on a mission trip and it didn't take long before Christella had found her way into their hearts. Ron and Kathy began sponsoring her and remained in contact with Christella. We thank God for technology and video calls.
In an orphanage in Haiti, when a child reaches the age of 18 they are "released into the world" with no substantial assistance or guidance. It is scary to think of a life outside of the orphanage, especially for a young female because it is not a life that we here in the US would desire for any of our loved ones. Upon hearing that Christella would soon be leaving the orphanage the Goodrich's quickly went into action, praying, researching, and asking for guidance on how they could help Christella.
In June of 2016, prayers were answered when Christella was given a student visa and allowed to move to the US to live with Ron and Kathy. When Brad and I met her for the first time, it was like meeting a long-lost sister, and we loved her before we even met her. The day Christella came into our life she became more than a daughter to Ron and Kathy, she became a sister, an Auntie, a niece, and a granddaughter. She is kind, loving, funny, athletic, talented in many ways, determined, smart, and she is a survivor.
Christella was immediately enrolled in college upon her arrival and began the ESL (English as a Second Language) program at Central Washington University in Ellensburg, Washington. After completing her ESL program, she transferred to Yakima Valley College where she is currently enrolled and studying hard. She is a dedicated, hardworking student, and is excelling with A's. It is incredible how much she has achieved while living here especially since English is her third language.
Christella has a passion for helping others and aspires to earn a degree in sociology and one day help other children from Haiti. To fulfill her purpose, her dream she needs to finish college and as many of you know college tuition quickly adds up and becomes very expensive. We hope to raise $9,600 by December 18 as her educational tuition is due on December 26. In total, we hope to raise $30,000 which will cover the remaining three years of her college tuition.
Her student visa requires that she remain enrolled in school, so it is essential that we raise these funds. Without the funding, she will not be able to continue going to college, and if not enrolled in school she will need to return to Haiti.
Despite her hardships in her home country and the challenges of moving to a new country, she continues to amaze us. Christella means the world to us, so we're reaching out to our family, friends, and our community for support and donations to help her remain in the US to continue her education so that one day she can pay it forward.
We thank you for your prayers, support, donations, and for taking the time to allow us to introduce you to our sister.
Please feel free to contact Brad, Ron, Kathy, or I with any questions.
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