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Congresswoman Robin Kelly

Representing the 2nd District of Illinois

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Constituent Spotlight: Julie and David Agosto

Aug 14, 2013
Constituent Spotlight
Flossmoor Family on a Mission to Find Homes for Orphans
Flossmoor Family on a Mission to Find Homes for Orphans
 
 
Julie and David Agosto have a clear-cut mission in life: finding homes for older orphans.
 
The Flossmoor couple recently hosted three brothers from Colombia through a Kidsave International program called Summer Miracles. The non-profit organization finds families for orphans who are not likely to be adopted in their own countries because they are older.
Agosto Family
In Columbia, brothers Hernando, 14, Rafael, 11, and Angel, 6, live with more than a dozen other children in a foster-style home managed by a house mother. This is the boys’ second attempt at adoption in the United States. They visited last year, but their hosts were unable to find a family willing to adopt the three brothers. 
 
“Older child adoption is not easy because most people believe older children are too difficult,” Julie Agosto said. “Boys are hardest to place. There’s a fear with older children. But all they need is a little seed of hope and they blossom. Once you give a child love and hope, you see such a difference—their life changes. It’s amazing to see the love they give back when you pour some into them.”
 
As a result of the couple’s prodigious networking throughout the south suburbs and across the country, a family has come forward with interest in adopting the boys.
 
“The best gift for the boys was to find a forever family,” Julie said. “Moving forward, we’ll be a part of the extended family and spend holidays together and create new experiences. We can’t wait to see the amazing young men they’re going to be.”
 
This is the first year the Chicago area has become a hosting location for Kidsave International children, who come from Colombia, Russia and Sierra Leone. 
 
The Agostos have always been passionate about the needs of children, especially those who are orphaned or abandoned. After raising three daughters, Jennifer, Michelle and Veronica, now in their early 20s, the couple went on to adopt three sons, Aaron, 12, Zachary, 10, and Evan 7.
 
“I really feel called to this,” Julie said. “My passion for helping children started off over 18 years ago when I was working with kids in social services, and it has turned into a ministry and
mission for our whole family. Our goal is to bring more children in so we can find homes for them. There are so many children just like them.”
 
Julie’s husband David is equally committed to helping orphan children.
 
“The hosting experience was wonderful because for five weeks we were able to put so much into these precious lives,” David said. “The ultimate goal is to be a catalyst in finding them a permanent home and a loving family. We feel so blessed that we were able to be part of their lives.”
 
The couple’s three sons got along well with the visiting brothers and “embraced” the hosting experience, according to Julie.
 
“Our boys are old enough to help out and old enough to think this is the coolest thing ever. It was so neat to hear my kids speaking Spanish to Hernando, Rafael and Angel—and just having fun.”
 
The brothers are now back in Colombia waiting for the adoption papers to be completed.
 
“I miss them terribly,” Julie said. “It’s so quiet now. The hardest part of the experience was the laundry. I often joke that if I go missing, you can probably find me under a pile of clothes.”
 
Julie wants others couples in the south suburbs and Chicago to know about the program and consider hosting or adopting older orphans.
 
“It warms my heart to know that this story is reaching and touching the lives of many in our community. My hope is that our story opens families up to hosting children because it’s such an amazing experience. It’s a really neat program that works. People don’t understand that when you bring in more children, it multiplies the love.”
 
For more information about Kidsave International, visit www.kidsave.org, or call 1-888-kidsave. Or, email Kidsave Chicago Community Coordinator Maru Braemer at marub@kidsave.org.
 
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Robin Kelly

 

 

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