A few days before Yaw’s family was set to visit us back in August 2010, we were finishing out the plans of where Justice would stay while they were here in the U.S. (because at that time Justice had been living with Yaw’s family in Ghana). For about 2 days time, we thought we were going to have to send Justice back to the foster care home he was at previously before we arranged his stay with Yaw’s family during our visa trip disaster in June. During these 2 days it seemed like the foster care home was going to be our only option, so Esi (Yaw’s mother) began preparing Justice to go back there. And that is when Justice began opening up to Esi, Peprah & Aku about abuse that he endured at the foster care home. He shared with them about details of physical abuse he received from both the foster mother and her biological (older) children living in the home, being forced to take part in child labor, and negligence of care in many ways – including receiving food.
During our trip in June 2010, we visited the foster care home the first day when we picked Justice up. From the outside, everything seemed fine. The foster mother seemed nice, she smiled a lot, and showed physical affection to Justice while we packed up his things. The older children that resided in the home seemed interested in us and Justice, and also flashed smiles and wanted pictures with all of us. You will recall that during this trip in June, Justice’s visa was not issued, and we had to come home without him. We left Ghana asking God why. Why, why, why? Why God did you have us go to Ghana to bring Justice home when you knew his visa was not going to be issued? But once all these details of abuse emerged, my questions about the purpose behind our June trip were finally answered. I believe God sent us to Ghana in June to get Samuel out of that foster care home, and into a safe and loving environment with Yaw’s family.
With Samuel’s descriptions of abuse, it was clear that the first thing that needed to be dealt with was the protection of the other children residing in the foster care home. However, there were a few issues that went along with this whole situation. There were accusations that Justice was lying about the abuse and negligence, as well as thoughts that the adverse treatment could have soley been limited to him because of his albinism. The other children in the home may have been cared for normally, but there was just no way to tell. The consensus among all those involved was that it was best to place the other children into different foster care, whether or not we had the clear answers to these issues.
Two days after the stories of the abuse surfaced, Esi and family were in our living room for their 3 week stay with us in August. From there we scheduled a time to meet with our case worker to talk through where the children left in the foster care home could possibly go once they were removed. And during this particular meeting, God showed up. It was as if God was sitting in one of those swivel chairs with us in the conference room. In my heart I already had the answer of why we traveled in June. But there was more to come. Through Justice, God had involved Nana & Esi in all of this. And there was a reason why….
I am trying to break this story up into readable parts, otherwise I think it will be too long for blogging purposes….so I will continue on tomorrow….