The Trot to Adopt 5k and Family Fun Run is an organization that helps fund and support local adoptions. This year, the Trot to Adopt is supporting five families: Ben and Mallory Bartley, Wade and Holly Fields, Brian and Gretchen Little, John and Samantha McCaskey, and Mark and Julianna Pharaoh. Trot to Adopt first began as a fundraiser for Tom and Sohailla Digsby. They were in the process of adopting their daughter, Elita, from China in 2011. They organized the 5k run to help raise the remaining funds they needed to bring Elita home. “We felt God calling us to expand our family through adoption. Our daughter was born in China in December of 2009 and we brought her home in the spring of 2011,” says Sohailla. “Our first 5k was just a couple months before we brought her home.”
Afterwards, they noticed others in the CSRA needed help with organizing 5k runs to help fund their adoptions. Sohailla asked her friends who had helped organize their 5k run if they would be interested in creating a team to organize a run every year for families in the CSRA. Now, they have raised close to half a million dollars to help bring more than thirty children home. “God really put together a team of people who have certain strengths like websites, coordination, and finances,” says Sohailla. “We are really grateful for our team of volunteers.”
Adoptions cost on average between thirty to forty thousand dollars. “Our main goal is to make finances not be a barrier to adoption,” says Sohailla. Families who want to be sponsored by Trot to Adopt have to fill out an application. “The application process helps us know whether these families align with our mission, which is to remove financial barriers in order to bring children to families where they can be introduced to the gospel of Jesus Christ.”
The other leaders of the Trot to Adopt team have either adopted children themselves or have a heart for adoption. Jennifer Drake, a Pediatrician at Augusta Pediatric Associates, is a mom to five children. She is a part of the Trot to Adopt team and two of her children are adopted. Her daughter, Cynthia, was adopted in 2010 from China and her son, David, was adopted in 2014 from Ethiopia. “In 2014 when David was coming home, everything happened very quickly,” says Jennifer. Because of that, there was a need for a large sum of money in a short amount of time. A friend suggested to Jennifer that she apply for the Trot to Adopt. Their family was selected to be sponsored. “It was an enormous blessing to our family financially and to have a community around us,” says Jennifer.
The Trot to Adopt 5k and Family Fun Run will be on December 4th at Blanchard Woods Park. Registration starts at 9:00am and the race will start at 10:00am. For more information about Trot to Adopt, please visit www.trottoadopt.org.