They immediately wanted to start a family as they were both in their 30s. Kristi became pregnant right away but suffered a miscarriage in the first week of her second trimester. Fast forward several years and 10 additional miscarriages suffered, they consulted every doctor possible, did genetic testing, IVF and still lost each baby. They opted to use a surrogate, went through the selection process, found the perfect surrogate and the IVF took! However, she too suffered a miscarriage and almost lost her own life. They looked into adopting in the USA but had failed attempts with two agencies for various reasons including one that was only accepting applications for fostering.
After spending an incredible amount of money and suffering tremendous loss and heartbreak, Geoff and Kristi had finally come to terms with the idea that children just may not be in God’s plan for them. However, a family member who had adopted in Nigeria asked them to not give up hope. They reluctantly agreed to try one more time. Fast forward another year or so and the ministry they were working with had not one but two children available for them to adopt... a perfect boy and a beautiful girl.
They began the long legal process to adopt their children who they named Grace and Kaleb, born 12/5/17. They flew back and forth to Nigeria to spend time bonding with their babies. Geoff and Kristi have been blessed to have family in Nigeria who were kind enough to care for their babies, in their absence. Geoff and Kristi had to participate in background checks, home study visits, interviews and more to be approved as adoptive parents. The adoption was final in July of 2018. Grace Onyinyechi and Kaleb Okezie Okwuonu are officially their children.
The final step to bringing the children “home” to the USA is for the children to obtain their visas. Geoff and Kristi traveled to Nigeria on Thanksgiving Day, 2018, and prepared for their interview with the US Embassy in hopes to be home before Christmas. However, their case is under administrative review, meaning we wait and pray everyday that their visas are approved. It is now March and although there has been movement, there is still not an approval. They have to fly back and forth in between two cities often to fulfill any requests by the US Embassy.
Geoff has been on vacation, using paid time and now having to file for unpaid FMLA in order to stay with Kristi and his children in Nigeria as they anxiously await an approval of their children’s visas. It’s impossible to be in two countries at once...the USA for work and in Nigeria when the US Embassy calls and says to come to their office. They have decided that Geoff needs to stay with his family, even if that means without pay.
It has been very expensive to cover bills in both countries, pay for flights when traveling to the US Embassy and now to do so without a salary will be tough. These two people have always been givers and have a difficult time receiving. We had to convince them to allow us to do to do this, because we know that so many people would love to help them finally complete their family. After helping others for so many years we feel it is their time to be on the receiving end!
If you would be willing to give any donation, it would help them cover the salary that will be missing in order for Geoff to stay in Nigeria. They would be so grateful. It’s a big ask but any contribution would be appreciated more than you will ever know. If you asked them what do they need the most they would tell you prayers.
We pray that the US Embassy will approve their children’s visas and they can return home to be united with family, friends, co-workers that miss them so much, everyday! We know that God is in control and his timing and plans are perfect! Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your consideration.
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