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PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Eight years ago, Sophia Fauveau and her husband, Mark, adopted Azalea Mitike Hadiya Williams, a baby girl from Ethiopia. As a newborn, Azalea was sick and dying. Her father found a hospital and placed her up for adoption, leading to her arrival in America.
Last year, Sophie sent photos of Azalea — now healthy and thriving — to Azalea’s birth father. He replied with a video. There was a message in it that left Sophie and Azalea shocked. They even had to rewind the video over and over again to make sure what they heard was correct.
“Then the story unfolded and there was more and more information,” Sophia recalled.
It turns out that Azalea has a twin brother, though she and her adoptive family never knew it. They started planning shortly after, lining up translators, transportation and the proper vaccines. A year later they touched down in the remote Ethiopian village where Azalea’s birth father and brother lived.
While there, Sophie noticed Azalea’s twin brother, Mitiku, may have had some of the same hearing and medical issues that Azalea had when she was younger.
When Sophie and Azalea returned to Portland, they knew they had to help Mitiku. They setup a Go Fund Me page to raise money for Mitku’s medical costs. Then they took it a step further.
“We’re raising funds to bring new education materials, train teachers and build toilets there so girls can go to school,” Sophie said, “because right now when girls are menstruating they have to stop school.”
They’ve raised over half of their $60,000 goal. Sophie said they consider Mitku and his village a part of their family now.
“I felt as a mom, even though I can’t claim this child as my own he has his own family … I did feel a part of my heart, you know, being given to that child,” Sophie said.
You can watch the full Go Fund Me video of Azalea and Mitku meeting each other below.
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