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Couple Travels To Ukraine To Adopt 1 Orphan With HIV — Now 4 Kids Have A New, Loving Home.

All six members of the Petrich family sit on a couch. They have their hands in the air with excitement and are smiling.
Tim Tebow Foundation and InspireMore have teamed up to create this 6-part article series The Real MVPs: How Tim Tebow Foundation is Fighting For the Most Vulnerable People In the World. You can learn more about TTF and join the fight here.

All around the world, there are countless children without homes who are hoping and praying to one day have a new family they can call their own. Although there are lots of folks who are more than happy to give these children a new home, the adoption process is often long, expensive, and tiring. That’s why the Tim Tebow Foundation (TTF), in fighting for the Most Vulnerable People, aims to make this process more accessible. This is also one of the many reasons why InspireMore is collaborating with the organization as part of our Causes that Matter.

Today, we’d like to share with you the story of Kurt and Cyndi Petrich. Now married, the two of them first met during a mission trip to Ukraine. The children they met at an orphanage there left a lasting impact on both of them. With time and prayer, they eventually returned to that same orphanage where they met a little girl named Dasha.

Close up of a photograph. In the photograph is a little girl named Dasha sitting at a table, smiling.
Tim Tebow Foundation

“She was at a little table with an oversized sweater and short, short hair — all by herself, not playing with the other children,” Cyndi recalled. “And we find out the reason she’s not playing with the other children is she has HIV.”

Long after Cyndi and Kurt returned home, they couldn’t stop thinking about Dasha. Without telling the other, they’d see this sweet little girl’s face in their dreams. When this was revealed, they knew that they had to adopt her.

Blonde woman looks back and smiles as she holds her little girl in her lap, named Dasha, who is also smiling.
Tim Tebow Foundation

Dasha, Cyndi, and Kurt’s new life together was amazing — but something was missing. Little Dasha missed the one friend she had back in the orphanage, Tanya, who also had HIV. So much so, in fact, that Dasha began to pray that Tanya would “come home.”

Despite the fact that Kurt and Cyndi weren’t sure how they’d afford a second adoption, after much prayer, they chose to do just that… only to learn that, in order to do so, they’d be bringing home more than one new kiddo!

A man smiles as he sits on a front porch step with two little girls. Both are hugging him and smiling.
Tim Tebow Foundation

Turns out, Tanya has two siblings, one of whom has cerebral palsy. Because siblings at this Ukrainian orphanage can’t be separated, Cyndi and Kurt’s only choice was to adopt all three of them or none of them.

“I was a little nervous because [with] adoptive parents … we have to make a decision [on] if we can actually give the child the care they need,” Cyndi shared.

Still, with more prayer and consideration, their path became clear: Not only were they able to adopt them all, but it was what they wanted to do. But the only way that was possible was through the help of TTF partner, Lifesong for Orphans.

Two adopted orphans from Ukraine and their new mom, Cyndi, walk off of a plane. All of them are wearing face masks.
Tim Tebow Foundation

“Had the Tim Tebow Foundation not [helped], those girls would probably not be here,” Cyndi said, getting emotional.

The road to getting these girls home wasn’t easy (because of COVID, the border to Ukraine was closing just as they were on a plane to Amsterdam), but despite these obstacles, they were able to not only bring their girls home, but they were also able to do so in a way that treated them like the royalty they are —this included a carriage ride where they were adorned with crowns.

“That’s what I would tell people that are thinking about adoption: Don’t look at what you don’t have but look at the one that has it all,” Cyndi said.

All six members of the Petrich family sit on a couch. They have their hands in the air with excitement and are smiling.
Tim Tebow Foundation

“Step in with curiosity, with adventure, knowing that people like Tim Tebow Foundation are in this thing with you,” Kurt added.

It can be easy to feel as though we are all alone in our struggles. Thankfully, organizations like TTF exist for the sole purpose of helping as many folks as possible, including families just like Cyndi and Kurt’s.

Before you go, watch this video of Cyndi and Kurt discussing the details of their journey to adopting their four wonderful children, all with the help of the Tim Tebow Foundation.

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