By Celine Klosterman
The adoptive daughter of a Catholic couple in Kalona is unhurt after an earthquake damaged her orphanage in Haiti, but her well-being is now threatened by dwindling food supply.
Lori Minor said Thursday that Crèche Enfant de l’Jèsus, an orphanage about 10 miles east of Port-au-Prince, had enough food and supplies left for only a week. She and her husband, Bill, are waiting for a passport to be finalized for Claudia Noelle, 2, who lives at the children’s home.
Food that Bill and Lori recently sent to Haiti likely was looted after the earthquake, before the orphanage received the donations, Lori said.
The Minors have been receiving updates from Chances for Children, an Arizona-based organization that runs the home. Chances for Children is trying to determine how to get food to Crèche Enfant de l’Jèsus after the quake damaged infrastructure and communication lines.
“We’re not sure if it’s safe for the children to be there, or if the orphanage has power,” Lori said.
She and Bill also aren’t sure now when Claudia will be able to come home. “We had potential for her to come home in March, but they’ve said all adoption proceedings will be halted for the time being,” Lori said.
The Minors met Jan. 13 with Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley while he was in Kalona, and he said he’d do what he could to expedite Claudia’s case, Lori said. “It’s discouraging.”
Seeing images on the news of Haitian wreckage – some from places the Minors recognized from visits to the country – “breaks our hearts.” But Lori and Bill appreciate prayers they’ve gotten from friends and Father Ed Fitzpatrick, director of the Newman Catholic Student Center in Iowa City, where the Minors attend Mass.
“We’re thankful Claudia’s OK,” Lori said. “We’re just concerned about the near future.”
To donate to Chances for Children, visit http://chances4childrendonations.blogspot.com/2010/01/earthquake-relief-urgent-help-needed.html.