Q. TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT YOUR FAMILY.
A: I’m Kate. I’m married to my amazing, super-patient-with-me husband, Jason. In 2001 and 2002, I had to bury two baby boys who were born at 23 and then 24 weeks. After that difficult experience, we were blessed with a daughter and son, and we thought our family was complete. But God kept whispering to us that we were not done—that He was not finished growing our family. He placed adoption on our hearts, and we just followed where He led us. We now have two glory babies in heaven, two biological children, and two adopted children.
Q: WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO START THE ADOPT SHOPPE?
A: I started The Adopt Shoppe in May 2009 out of necessity. Jason is a church planter and I’m a stay-at-home mom. We didn’t have money to adopt—like no money at all. Before I started making anything, I scoured the Internet to be sure I was making something different and authentic as well as uplifting and inspiring to bless women in their daily Christian lives.
I’ve always loved Scripture, so I decided to make little “billboards for your heart.” As Proverbs 6:21–22 says, “Bind them always on your heart; fasten them around your neck. When you walk, they will guide you; when you sleep, they will watch over you; when you awake, they will speak to you.”
I made necklaces and sold them—100 percent of the proceeds went toward our adoptions. Now it pays for things for our family like unexpected medical bills.
We adopted Mia in August 2010. I shut down the Shoppe for a while after we brought her home. I reopened to raise funds for our second adoption.
We adopted Max in November 2012. Again, I shut down the Shoppe for a bit during the adjustment period after he came home. When I reopened, I started doing adoption fundraisers for other adoptive families.
Q: WHY DID YOU START DOING AUCTIONS FOR OTHER ADOPTING FAMILIES?
A: After adopting our daughter Mia, it became my dream to financially help other adoptive families. A lack of funding is the number one deterrent that keeps families from adopting. I knew that if I could help even one family with that hurdle, it would be worth it.
When I do adoption fundraisers, the adoptive family gives me a very reduced amount per necklace to cover supplies. I let the family choose 20 necklaces from an album of more than 75 necklace designs that they think will sell best to their friends and family. I also usually give them a “giveaway” necklace to advertise their auction and encourage people to share about it. Whatever they get above that is theirs for their adoption.
I’ve got one auction going on now, and from 20 necklaces, the family has made $2,125 for their adoption. Families usually make at least $1,000 for their adoptions from an Adopt Shoppe fundraiser.
Q: HOW MAY AUCTIONS FOR OTHER FAMILIES HAVE YOU DONE?
A: I’ve been blessed to do about 30 adoption auctions in the last year and a half. The auctions have helped bring children home from Uganda, Ethiopia, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo, China, Taiwan, Eastern Europe, the United States (including foster adoptions), and many more places.
Q: WHAT KEEPS YOU GOING AUCTION AFTER AUCTION?
A: I admit to sometimes getting tired and worn out. Sometimes I get burnt out on making necklaces. I homeschool my four children, so I don’t have time while they’re at school to work on making things. I just have to squeeze in some time here and there during the day and stay up late a lot of nights. But the knowledge that my small sacrifice helps change the life of a child forever makes it worth it all.
Q: YOU WERE INVOLVED WITH A FUNDRAISER FOR THE ORPHANAGE FROM WHICH YOU ADOPTED YOUR TWO KIDS. HOW DID THAT COME ABOUT? IS IT STILL OPEN?
A: Yes! We adopted both times from an orphanage in Taiwan called Taiwan Xi En. Right after our second adoption from them, the laws in Taiwan changed and required TXE to raise a lot of money and jump through a lot of hoops to comply with the new laws. I wanted to help, and God gave me an idea for a fundraiser. Anyone who donated a certain amount directly to TXE got their choice of necklace from me. I’m honored that God used me to raise $7,000 for this amazing ministry.
Q: WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO OTHERS WHO SEE NEEDS IN THEIR LIVES AND WANT TO TAKE ACTION?
A: Don’t wait. Don’t wait until you’re perfect—or until you’ve got it all together. God doesn’t need us to be perfect. He just needs us to be willing. God will guide your footsteps if you’re willing to move your feet.