Parents from NJ with 6 biological children adopt 7 orphaned siblings from Ukraine: “A gift”
gofundme The Torppey family
A New Jersey family nearly doubled in size recently after parents of six decided to adopt seven orphaned siblings from Ukraine.
Wade and Michelle Torppey already had their hands full when they learned about the siblings, who were living in an orphanage in Mokrats after both parents died, according to the Morristown Daily Record.
But that didn’t stop the couple from bringing in Olena, 17, Leeza, 14, Slavik, 12, Alina, 11, Anhelina, 9, Senya, 8, and Jenya, 6 – and doing Wantage, Sussex County their home.
After years of visiting and a delay exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, the siblings were officially adopted into the Torppey family in July, the outlet reported.
“If there is one thing that we think we can do well, and other people have told us that we are doing it well, it would be being parents,” Wade told the Save. “I would like to think that this is a gift we have that God has given us, and he is asking us to do it a little longer than expected.”
Michelle added: âMost people, when we say we adopted seven, they already knew we had six, so they assume we adopted one more. When they hear seven plus six, they say, “What? “We receive a lot of them … The atmosphere in the house is often chaotic, but full of love and laughter.”
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The Torppey family’s journey to adoption began a few years ago after Wade, a blacksmith by trade, completed a short volunteering mission to Haiti, according to the Save.
While there, Wade bonded with several children who lived in difficult circumstances and was ultimately inspired to help others in similar situations.
Around the same time, the Torppey’s saw several members of their longtime congregation, Lafayette Federated Church, adopt children as part of a program run by the non-profit Open Hearts and Homes For Children. , the media reported.
The program allows American families to welcome orphans from Ukraine and Latvia for Christmas and during the summer. Some people, like their pastor Aaron Robb, were so moved by the experience that they decided to adopt the children they welcomed, according to the Save.
“I think [Wade] was looking for a way for the whole family to welcome, support and care for less fortunate children, âRobb told the outlet. “If anyone can handle it, the Torppey’s can.” “
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And they did. In 2017, the Torppey’s hosted the sibling group for Christmas for the very first time. The two youngest boys were too young to travel, so only five siblings came that year, according to the Save.
âTheir father died in 2016 and their mother in 2018,â Michelle told the outlet. “There were 10 siblings in all. Two had already aged outside the system and one stayed with relatives.”
âFrom the start I knew it would be something more than Christmas,â Wade said.
After a month, the families parted ways in an emotional goodbye at Dulles Airport near Washington, DC The following summer, the siblings returned for a longer nine-week visit and then planned to meet again. reunite at Christmas 2018, solidifying parents’ desire to take them as their own. However, it was not until last July that the adoption was finalized.
“We have a lot of fun together,” Michelle told the Save.
âWe certainly have no regrets,â Wade added. “It is sometimes difficult and a little bit of adjustment. But when you know their heartâ¦ For us, it is obeying God and what he has put before us.”
Wade and Michelle received financial assistance from their religious community, including gift cards for groceries and cash donations to help pay for their education at Sussex Christian School and Veritas Christian Academy, the outlet reported.
A GoFundMe page was also created by the eldest of the Torppey brothers, Taylor Gibson, who is married and now lives in Wisconsin, to help cover tuition for private schools in Sussex Christian, according to the Save.
âOur church family has been absolutely amazing,â Michelle told the Save. “We have been overwhelmed. It is a very humbling experience. We love to be the people who give. We are not used to being on the receiving side.”
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Today, the Ukrainian siblings are focused on adjusting to their new life in the United States, which includes learning English and playing soccer.
“If anyone asks what is the main language in the house now, I say charades,” Michelle joked. Save. “When all else fails, there’s Google Translate on the phone.”
As they continue to embrace their new life and new family, Robb congratulates the Torppey’s for going above and beyond to change the lives of these seven children.
“It’s an absolutely amazing family,” he told the Save, “and their story is just inspiring beyond anything I’ve heard in years.”