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Creating families across the globe


Creating families across the globe
Port Huron-area parents bring Liberian children into their lives

A 13-child family like Brent and Danielle Anter's is rare, especially when about half of them are from a few thousand miles away.

Since 2005, the Anters have adopted six daughters from Liberia through the West African Support Network. They also have seven other children, five of them adopted.
Danielle Anter, 32, said she doesn't like to identify which of them is adopted.
"I don't differentiate between my kids," she said. "They're all my kids."
The Anters are one of 12 families from Indiana, Michigan and Ohio who will be gathering at Griswold Street Baptist Church in Port Huron Saturday evening for a reunion featuring West African Support Network's founder and director, Maria Luyken.
The network provides services to the people of Liberia to help them recover from the country's second civil war, which officially ended in 2003.
The network began adoptions that year, and more than 300 children have been brought to the United States and Canada.
Five adoptive families are in the Port Huron area.
Ryan and Tina Proctor of Port Huron Township adopted daughters Yujay, 12, and Liberty, 2, in January of this year.
"You can't change the world, but you can save one child," said Tina Proctor, 33. "That seems really corny, but that's what we learned."
Pastor Dan Stewart, 41, of Griswold Street Baptist Church, and his wife, Nancy, 42, are the adoptive parents of Cecelia, 1, and Naomi, 2.
He said they learned of the program through church members Scott and Alissa Cummins, who adopted a son, Boima, 5, and a daughter, Matu, 3.
"It's something that's hard to explain," Dan Stewart said. "We moved from the thought of, 'Yes, there is a great need and this is something very good to do,' (to feeling) God was specifically calling us to do this."
All four families, as well as Stacey Mose, who adopted Garblejay, 5, with her husband Gary, cited their faith as the driving force behind their desire to adopt.
"The need is so great in countries like Liberia that you could really save a life," Tina Proctor said.
On the Anters' trip to Liberia for their first adoption, Danielle Anter said, she realized she couldn't stop then.
"Once you get over there and you see the poverty and need, it's hard to turn your back and say, 'OK, I'm done,'" she said, "Especially when you still have room and finances and heart to bring them home."
Contact Jesse Dunsmore at (810) 989-6276 or jdunsmore@gannett.com.

2008 Nov 15