FAQs

Does Both Hands help families who are adopting domestically or internationally?

Yes! We can help families raise funds for their domestic or international adoption. 

Who is Lifesong for Orphans?

Lifesong for Orphans is a ministry that seeks to bring joy and purpose to orphans through adoption funding, global orphan care, church partnership, and foster care outreach.  Both Hands and Lifesong have partnered to help simplify the application process for adoptive families. 

If you are interested in pursuing an interest free loan and/or a matching grant from Lifesong for Orphans, you can fill out Lifesong's application HERE and mark the 'Both Hands' box. Lifesong's application approval process is 8-10 weeks. This eliminates the need for the family to fill out 2 applications and monitor 2 separate fundraising accounts. Our partnership allows funds raised through your Both Hands project to be used towards meeting any matching grants awarded through Lifesong.

If you are interested in expediting your application review process (2-4 weeks) and are primarily pursuing a Both Hands project rather than Lifesong matching grants, you can apply through the Both Hands' application portal HERE.

Does Both Hands work with single parents who are adopting?

Yes, contingent upon application submission and approval.

Can I do a Both Hands project for post-adoption fundraising?

Generally speaking, no. We have found through past projects that once the adoption is complete and the child is home, the perception is that the goal has been accomplished and there is considerably less enthusiasm among potential team members to ask their friends to sponsor them for a project like this.

What if I’m not adopting, but I’m interested in holding a project to raise funds for another cause?

That's wonderful! These projects work in the same way as family project where a team serves a widow and raises funds. The benefitting cause must be related to orphans. We call these Both Hands Orphan Care Projects or Vision Projects. Orphan Care Projects can raise funds for an orphan-related cause or a church adoption fund. Vision Projects raise funds for the operating costs of Both Hands to help us continue serving adoptive families, orphans and widows. Email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) for more info.

Can we use social media outlets instead of sending out snail mail letters?

The old fashion way of sending out letters first has proved the most effective initial contact to donors. You can use social media as an additional tool to promote your project.

We have discovered that most people require 3-4 impressions before they react or move into action. We recommend that team members send out the fundraising letter via snail mail, then follow up within a week to check to see if they received the letter over the phone and/or via email (with an attached  digital version). Then after the project, follow up again via email with the link to the video created after the project.

How is money raised through Both Hands?

The money is raised through the sponsorship process. Each team member, as part of the team, is asked to send a letter (written for them by the project manager) to their entire list of contacts.  The letter explains the program and gives people the opportunity to sponsor them as a worker for the day. The tax-deductable gift is sent to the adoptive family's or designated cause's fundraising account.

Are there any expenses to do a project?

The goal is to have 100% of the supplies donated for the work on the widow's house. That is why we usually encourage our teams to prioritize projects that are labor intensive rather than supply intensive. Cleaning, de-cluttering, landscaping, painting, etc. are examples of a labor intensive project. We provide tips to get supplies donated for the project day. The printing and postage costs of sending out all the letters should be the only cost to the adopting family. Some projects have even been blessed to have the stamps donated by volunteers.

Can money collected from donors be used to pay for supplies for the project?

No, all monies donated to the project go toward the cause - the family's adoption or orphan-related cause.

How do we get supplies for the project?

The supplies for the work on the widow's house are donated by local businesses. After you have assessed the needs for the widow's house, Both Hands will provide you and your team with a letter for merchants who donate. You and your team can then use the letter to gather donated supplies, food, etc. from local businesses.

Who is responsible for finding the widow’s house?

It is the family and/or project manager's responsibility to find a widow to serve. Both Hands will help the project manager draw up ideas for places to find a widow in need. Your church's benevolence department or senior ministry may be able to direct you to a widow in need. We have also had luck contacting meal delivery programs. The drivers and program directors can often identify a person in need.

How much time does it take to put a project together?

After approval, the Both Hands project process usually takes about 6-8 weeks to allow for planning and execution of the project. You can shorten or lengthen that timeline as it works best for you and your team.  The critical factor in this process is the quality of your team and then finding a widow to serve.

When is the best time to hold a project?

Both Hands projects take place year round (though winter tends to thin the pool of available volunteers). The best time really depends on the location of the project and types of projects being completed. Usually the weather and availability of the volunteer team to work are the two biggest considerations. We also encourage projects to be completed before the adopted child is home. Read more HERE.

What kinds of projects do you do?

We usually recommend finding projects that are labor intensive (landscaping, painting, cleaning, de-cluttering) rather than supply intensive (major construction overhaul). If your team is composed of skilled construction workers with connections likely to yield donations of supplies, then major construction overhauls are more achievable.

At what point in the adoption process can I apply?

Applications are accepted after your home study is completed.

How does the whole thing really work?

It's much like a 5K walk or golf fund-raising event. Once an adoptive family or project manager has been approved for fundraising support, they enlist the help of their friends and form a team. The team then sends letters out to their contacts asking them to consider a one-day sponsorship as they work on a widow's house.

The adoptive family or project manager is responsible for locating a widow in their community who owns her home and but is not in a position to manage its upkeep. Once they have identified a widow and her needs, the team gives local merchants the opportunity to donate supplies for the day. The team then spends a day working on the widow's house. 

100% of the money raised goes toward the cause – the cost of the adoption, church adoption fund, or orphan care initiative. Nothing is taken out for the operating expenses. 

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress...

James 1:27 (NIV)