The Man in the Suit – by Gary J. Cooper

28 04 2010

I write you with a request, a request to help my dear friends at Joint Council by donating today.  But first, I’d like you to know why my family continues to donate to Joint Council and why it is so important.

In January 2009, my wife and I were New Yorkers living in Guatemala in the middle of the test of our lives as our three children’s adoptions had all been the victim of unnecessary and seemingly unending red tape.  We had been living at the orphanage for many months, doing the best we could to be a Mom and Dad.  Every day was filled with uncertainty and fear as we tried to understand why so many adoptions were being unjustly delayed.  Most days we felt that we were alone in advocating for the children’s right to a permanent family.

An amazing exception to this rule occurred one day as an American gentleman showed up at the orphanage in, of all

Tom DiFilipo in Guatemala

things, a suit.  Within minutes he was on the floor playing with the children, and later met with adoptive parents to learn what was happening in their cases.  This was all in preparation for his three days of meetings with Guatemalan children’s rights authorities in which he advocated for all adoptions to obtain timely due process.  This man was Tom DiFilipo, President & CEO of Joint Council.  We were not alone!

After arriving home four months later with our children, we began trying to settle into normal life, but also immediately began advocating for the children that remained in Guatemala.  Visions of their smiles, laughter, and tears remained very close to our hearts. We decided to act and helped start a campaign called the Guatemala 900.  We found that again we were not alone – Joint Council was there.

Through our relationship with Joint Council, we’ve learned that their work in Guatemala is only the tip of the iceberg.  We’ve now had the pleasure of seeing them advocate for the children that are in tremendously trying situations in Kyrgyzstan, Ethiopia, Vietnam, Haiti, and most recently, Russia.  And just as importantly, we see them working everyday for the kids in countries that are not in the current headlines.   Joint Council is truly THE voice for all children in our world who need permanent, loving families.

The Cooper Family

The work that Joint Council does has a cost and they need everyone’s help to continue their unique advocacy.  Our family has donated and will continue to — we urge your family to do so as well.  Joint Council is a tireless, lean-and-mean organization, and we have been astounded at their efficiency.  You can rest assured that every dollar of your donation is making a difference in our world.  I’ve actually stopped looking at it as a donation to Joint Council, I now see it more as an investment – an investment in a more righteous, kind world where the children are looked upon as the key to the future and are revered above all else.  This is the world that I want my children to live in.  Please join us in supporting Joint Council!

Gary J. Cooper

Click here to donate to Joint Council




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