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14 Years Old and Only 13 Pounds-But Now Home with a Family!


In 2021 we received a heart wrenching application from the Braddock family. In their application they showed photos of 3 boys they were trying to adopt. (Charlie, Benjamin and Oleksii.) Both Charlie and Benjamin had severe medical needs. We work with a lot of children who have medical problems, but Charlie was the most medically fragile teenager we had ever seen.

Charlie has Seckle Syndrome, and was severely malnourished for many years. He is 14 years old, and is the size of an infant. He weighs just over 13 pounds, and wears newborn diapers. He has spent most, if not all, of his life confined to a crib. Our hearts broke for Charlie. While Charlie’s condition was heartbreaking, the Braddocks were not just adopting him, they were also stepping out in faith to adopt two additional boys, Oleksii and Benjamin. Oleksii was turning 16, and was at risk of aging out. He had severe kidney disease, and would most likely need a kidney transplant once he came home. Benjamin had microcephaly, and various special needs. We knew that all 3 of these boys needed a family very soon.

The Braddocks knew that the Lord was calling them to bring their sons home; however, they did not know how they would afford the high cost of 3 adoptions. Connected Hearts had the pleasure of working with the Braddocks to help them raise funds to complete their adoptions.

This month the Braddocks traveled to Ukraine to adopt their boys. Due to an error in paperwork, they are still waiting to finalize Benjamin’s adoption. However, both Charlie and Oleksii are now home.

Below is what their mom, Holly, said about their transition,

“Oleksii is transitioning well at home. His sister Genesis thinks he hung the moon, and his brother Jakob is so excited to have someone to play video games with!”


Holly is currently staying in the hospital with Charlie, and will be there for the foreseeable

future. Holly said, “Charlie is thriving! Growing leaps and bounds every day. I pulled into the hospital emergency room around midnight Friday night with a pale, lifeless 13 pound 14.5 year old child. We didn't know what to expect. Almost a week later we have a boy who belly laughs, sits up on his own, rolls around, and plays with toys! His healing will be long, but he has shown he's here for the long haul. I can't wait to see what the future has for him!

We’d like to say a special thank you to our monthly partners and the Give 1 Help One Community for your support in bringing Charlie and Oleksii home. While the world was shutting down due to the pandemic, your monthly support helped us stand in the gap for Charlie and Oleksii.Your support saved Oleksii from aging out, and gave Charlie the life saving medical care he needed. Thank you for giving Charlie and Oleksii the priceless gift of the love of a family!

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