September 23, 2020
“I’m The Blessed One”
a spark of hope
Our adoption story begins with Rhonda Anderson, a foster parent with NewPath Child & Family Solutions (formerly St. Joseph Orphanage) for over six years, fostering twenty different children. “Even when I was younger, I wanted to be a foster parent. It was just a calling I guess for me to do it,” said Rhonda when asked what brought her to become involved in fostering. Having five grown biological children, Rhonda and her late husband John still found room in their lives to give other children a wonderful. loving home.
When Rhonda received the call for a placement of five children, she and her husband had only been fostering for a little while and were wary of taking in so many kids, all under the age of five. Rhonda and John took in the three middle children while the other two went onto another family. “I remember that day getting them out of the car and thinking these poor babies. They were just so tiny,” said Rhonda. The other two children went through a couple of different foster homes over the years.
The Anderson’s case worker made them aware that the oldest and youngest sibling were being moved again to another home when Rhonda said “I really wish I could take them and keep them all together.” The caseworker immediately asked if Rhonda would be willing to reconsider and take them in. Without hesitation, Rhonda agreed and called John at work to say “Guess what? We just became foster parents of two more. These kids need to be together.”
A changed future
After some time, another family became interested in adopting all five kids. Rhonda’s first thought was “they can’t take my babies” so she and John agreed that they couldn’t imagine life without them. The wonderful couple adopted all five children at ages 4, 5, 6, 7, and 10.
Tragedy struck the family in June of 2019, only 26 days after the adoption was final, when John died of cardiac arrest. Rhonda explained that “So many people say, how blessed these kids are to have me. But, especially after losing John, I think I’m very blessed to have them. If it wasn’t for these kids, I probably would’ve mourned myself to death. They keep me going.”
Up until a few months ago Rhonda was fostering three children in addition to her five adopted children and was also caring for two grandchildren giving her a grand total of ten kids! Although Rhonda has decided not to renew her fostering license, she still continues to sing the praises of NewPath. “I hope that my story will inspire somebody else to foster and adopt. These kids need foster homes. I try to get people to sign up with St. Joe’s [now NewPath] all the time,” said Rhonda.
We are so lucky to have Rhonda Anderson as a member of the NewPath Family!
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