Thursday, January 26, 2017

Missionary from Giving Hope Rescue Mission shares personal story of abuse by Heather Elyse Savage Matranga

"Adoptive parents were constantly being labeled as "crazy," "making trouble," or "creating drama," and there was a seeming attempt to create a great deal of animosity and distrust against them." 

You can follow Rebecca's blog here:

Friday, November 20, 2015

A Warning... Heather Elyse Savage and Matranga School of Art

It’s been a long hiatus since we have posted on this blog. Since our last post, while the FBI continued its investigation surrounding her work in  Haiti, Heather Elyse Savage had all but disappeared. We shared that Heather had charges pending for child abuse/neglect, and that her children had been removed from her custody. Those charges have been settled, and she does not have legal guardianship any longer of her 7 children, though it seems she may have managed to have (illegal) physical custody of at least one of them at this time. There were court proceedings on record in this matter as recently as July 2015.

Until now, our blog has been primarily about the despicable acts that Heather has committed related to adoption fraud, misappropriation of funds, and a stunning web of deception and lies in Haiti and the US. While many stories have been shared, there are still many families who have chosen to keep their stories private as they continue to struggle to bring their adopted kids to the US (years after their adoptions were completed in Haiti). We hope to continue to share some of these with you in the coming weeks.

But we have discovered that Heather is once again putting children and families in danger.  We have been alerted that Heather is currently involved with an organization called Matranga School of Art. As the website states, the school has been housing adopted children with attachment concerns, especially those whose families are considering adoption disruption. But we have also been informed by several sources, that Heather herself (through Matranga) is re-homing children that are coming to their respite program.

matranga school.png

The Matranga School of Art was incorporated in the State of Washington on August 5, 2015…
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It was incorporated by Johnnie (aka, Rocky) Matranga. The Matranga School of Art facebook page however was posting publicly since June 2015, and hosted a graduation from their 9 week program in September.

The week of August 7, 2015 Johnnie Matranga (aka Rocky)  and Heather Elyse Savage were issued a marriage license in Pierce County, WA.
heather marraige license.png

According to several sources, Heather has been attending conferences and retreats, as well as posting in private facebook groups, for families of children with Reactive Attachment Disorder and for families who have disrupted or are considering disrupting their adoptions. She has been targeting these vulnerable and hurting families to recruit students for their school. It seems that she has been misrepresenting her own role at Matranga School of Art. She presents herself as a mother who has re-homed children through Matranga, who now volunteers with them. She has been very careful to keep her name off the Matranga School of Art website and facebook page.

Heather has also mentioned her plans to several sources to start a second Matranga School of Art in the state of Oklahoma.

We are very concerned about this turn of events, and desire to widely spread this information in hopes that Heather is not able to continue hurting vulnerable families and children any longer. Please share this information widely, especially among adoptive families. And please let us know if you have any further information.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

When Pictures Lie

     They say pictures can speak 1000 words…. Sadly they can represent lies too.   I’ve learned the hard way how easily people can be deceived.  I’m still saddened by those who do not believe it’s “right” to have a blog that speaks out against someone but I disagree.  In the past 10 months or so since we started this blog we have received numerous emails from others in Heather’s past who have very similar stories of deceit, fraud, lies and manipulation.  This information was never put out there because many of these wounded people felt isolated, like they were the only ones affected.  Others felt (feel) like it may not be Christ-like to put this information out there.  Those of us who have worked hard on this blog have done so not for revenge or to be hateful but to protect people.  Had we all been individually fighting this battle I’m not sure we would have been able to do this but collectively we have the strength and ability to do whatever we can to warn others so no one else has to go through the pain we have all endured.  It’s hard to even try to express the pain and mental anguish I have endured this past year as I’ve had to re-do and re-pay for most of my adoption, but really, I’m one of the lucky ones.  I’m one of the moms who will bring her children home.  There are others who that will never happen for and they continue to grieve and mourn the loss of their child(ren) and the dream of what their family would have been.

     Since this all started last year Heather fled Haiti, has refused to resign from the adoption agency, Voice of the Orphan, or remove herself from the 501c3 board, Room for Grace, where she continues to funnel donations to a now “closed” crèche (orphanage).  There are hundreds of thousands of unaccounted for dollars unless you count the word of Heather because that is the only accounting evidence she, Tim Rowe or Michelle See has provided for most of the money that has been sent to Haiti the past 2 years, including about $200k of an almost $300k donation given in the fall.

    Of the $280k+ single donation given in the fall, VOTO used about $85k to refund adoptions.  It’s interesting that these were adoptions that had been paid in full but were either never processed or the kids were unadoptable (and never should have been matched with any adopting families).  So if they needed their $12k per child refunded and VOTO took care of that, where is the original $12k per child these parents paid in?  In addition to that another $85k-ish was sent to Haiti to “pay off debt”.  There have been no receipts provided to any of the staff to support this “claim” she made when verifying where the funds were used.  Another $100k was put away somewhere for the future of Giving Hope Rescue mission but despite multiple attempts from the donor and other families who have supported the 501c3 (which has to provide financial accountability to it’s donors) NO ONE has been given any evidence that this money is being used for anything other than funding Heather Elyse’s personal life and needs. 

     Sadly, she continues to accept donations from those who do not know better (we have been contacted several times by donors who find our blog online and have automatic donations deducted from their accounts) in addition to actually traveling to churches to ask for support.  Below is a screenshot from Heather Elyse’s blog where she continues to promote her “rescue mission” in Haiti in which the government of Haiti has removed the remaining children and forbidden them from completing adoptions.  Despite what Heather claims, her crèche is NOT approved and Haiti has released a public notice which addresses donations for unregistered or unapproved children’s homes:

 States that the Central Authority does not prohibit the development of humanitarian, national and international solidarity towards children’s homes.  However all donors must ensure that these children’s homes are registered and authorized to operate by IBESR for the current fiscal year.  Any cooperation shall be specified and reported to IBESR which promotes and encourages partnership spirit, mutual support and cooperation among children’s homes. “

     Here are just a few of the real stories about the “boutique crèche” and the reality of the children she is posting that supposedly represent her work in Haiti.    If you have recently, or are currently, financially supporting Heather Elyse, Voice of the Orphan, Room for Grace or Giving Hope Rescue Mission or any other project promoted by Heather Elyse please know that despite her claims to be “the most transparent and ethical” person there is no accountability outside of those 3 people and little to no evidence to support many of the claims to where the hundreds of thousands of dollars has gone.  You don't have to believe us.  Ask Heather, Michelle or Tim yourself for evidence of financial accountability and make sure it is verified by someone other than just her because she has and will create false documents.  
Look at the faces here and know that just because someone posts pretty pictures and claims to be ethical and pure, it doesn’t mean they are.


Thursday, May 1, 2014

Unraveling Heather Elyse

We sat in the congregation wearing black, watching a slideshow memorializing the life of three small children in Haiti. “Heather’s children.” Our hearts were broken for the loss of these lives and as the slideshow and videos played we sat stunned and in pain mourning their loss.

I watched the faces of Heather Elyse’s seven American-born children. They were sitting perfectly still and proper in the front row of the sanctuary. Tears rolled down the cheeks of one of the older girls. We felt for them. And we were confused by how little comfort Heather offered.

We, and the rest of the families adopting from Heather’s crèche Giving Hope Rescue Mission, had been told by Heather that the children in Haiti (“her” children) were victims of a “brutal hate crime” but we still had no idea what had happened and why 2 young children and a baby were dead. There was no explanation; there were no bodies, nothing during the memorial that offered any details of what had happened or why.

After the service we stood with Heather and her children and asked for the story. What had happened and what was this brutal hate crime?

She told us that the older girl (age approximately 4?) was going to get a visa to come home to the U.S. with Heather as her adopted daughter. It was the day of her visa appointment at the U.S. embassy. She said that that day she, Heather, was at the airport in Port au Prince and had left the kids at the crèche. Before the little girl left for her visa appointment with the crèche director, Wesmin, her birthmother arrived. She described the birthmother as crazy, drug addicted, from the slums of Port au Prince. She said that the birthmother and a dangerous man who was with her in a car came and a tug of war ensued over the little girl and her young cousin. A large crowd grew around the crèche and “things became dangerous.” So the crèche director released Heather’s children to the birthmother and the man in the car.

According to Heather the police were called and they set up a roadblock in the small town of Montrouis (it has one main street approximately one mile long.) When the birthmother and the children stopped at the road block the woman pulled the children from the car and shot them point blank in the middle of the street while screaming that if she couldn’t have them, Heather could not be happy and have them.

I remember bursting into tears. I asked what had happened to the baby and Heather said “basically the same thing.”

My husband and I were in total shock. We felt for Heather and for her children. We offered her any help she might need. We hugged her and the children close. Heather told us that she’d never be able to get the bodies back because the little girl never did get her visa, etc.

Then things got weird. Heather wrote a blog post online about visiting the childrens’ blood stains on the street of Montrouis. She wrote about visiting the murderer in prison and writing “I forgive you” on her hands.

Missionaries living in and around Montrouis began researching and stated emphatically that this murder never happened there and that what Heather was describing was not true.

Stories began to conflict. Heather wrote on a child update for children living at the creche that the baby had died of a disease. She apparently forgot that she told us that the baby was murdered.

Heather told others that the children were murdered by machete, not shot with a gun.

We began to feel very nervous.

Three months later we were back in that same church. This time for Heather’s baby shower for another little girl she said she was adopting from Haiti.

Lovely pictures of the little girl and her big eyes and sweet smile were posted up front.

I sat there with another adoptive mom and watched this celebration of Heather, her work in Haiti and her supposed adoption of this child with some level of skepticism. She had not updated us on our adoption progress and children who were supposed to have gone home by then had not. We had begun to wonder if she was fabricating the dramatic stories coming out of her work in Haiti but were still hopeful that nobody working with children and claiming to be a Christian could be that deceptive.

And then the climax of the baby shower service arrived. I watched in mounting dismay as Heather played a video of her seven American-born children re-enacting the trauma surrounding their adoptions.

Heather had previously detailed for us that the children had the  “worst abuse stories in the history of social services” in their states. There were stories of her children’s mutilations, incest and a child locked in a dog cage. I was nervous as the video started and the children were shown crying and holding on to one another as they talked about their stories and details surrounding the reasons they were no longer in their birthparents’ care.

The two of us sitting together were sick and in shock. Not for Heather and not for the children’s stories. We cried because what we were watching seemed like such an obvious exploitation of the children in Heather’s home. No child should ever been shown in such a compromising way.

Shortly after it ended we got up and walked out.

We agreed that something seemed terribly off about Heather Elyse’s judgment and parenting choices.

We went out for lunch the following week and made a list of things we had been told by Heather, things other adoptive parents had been told, and what we actually knew was true. We began reaching out to people who might be able to confirm or deny some of the stories.

Nothing added up.

- Heather claimed to be adopted but no online records supported this. She has several siblings, including a twin, and was raised in her family of origin.

- Heather claimed that she was sick and dying of cancer but this seemed to be ongoing without any progression or treatment.

- Heather claimed that each of her children had extreme problems – from mental health to behavior to diseases. But she traveled all over the U.S. and Haiti with these children and the people we talked to who had lived with her had not seen her administer any medication. We called her church as well as a missionary in Haiti that had lived with her and nobody had seen her educating her children by sending them to school or homeschooling them. We also found a record online of charges brought against her for not educating the children.

- Heather told us that she was a very successful professional photographer who worked for Target and that she had to fly around the US doing photo shoots but we could not find any evidence of any career. The only jobs from her past that people have confirmed are a short stint working for a gift shop and some time as an assistant to a photographer. Prior to moving to Haiti she was the Children’s minister at Olive Branch Church of God. They let her go after one year.

- Heather told us and others that she was involved in lawsuits. Specifically she was suing her former church/employer and that she was being sued by a missionary family in Haiti. When we looked into this by contacting the parties involved nobody was aware of any lawsuits whether from her or against her.

- Heather told us (and also told a newspaper in Indiana, click here.) that the first child she foster/adopted “Victoria” was murdered by her birthmother. Two witnesses have come forward stating that Victoria is alive and well and was not murdered.

- Heather claimed to be adopting 10 children in Haiti. My husband and I met those Haitian children. They lived with her in a 2 bedroom apartment along with her 7 adopted children and her husband at the time. She never brought any of those children home to the U.S.

- Heather told so many conflicting stories about whether she had been married, was married or was never married that she lost control over the stories. We had a firsthand experience of arriving in Haiti in March of 2012 and meeting her then husband S. Kelly with whom she was living in a small apartment with 17 children. She wore a large wedding ring. She introduced S as her husband and S was with us the entire week we were at the crèche. Only to be completely out of her life just a couple of months later when we attended the memorial for the “murdered” children in Colorado.

Heather is now charged with child neglect in the state of Indiana.
This is the least of the charges we believe she should be faced with.

Families from all over the United States, many whom have never even met in person, have had the same experience with Heather. Loss of thousands of dollars to Heather when she could or would not complete their adoptions of children from Haiti. Conflicting and inappropriate stories shared by Heather with adoptive families related to sex/marriage/porn/rape. Conflicting stories of deaths and murder of children in her care in Haiti. Conflicting stories of where she gets her income and how she came to parent her seven adopted children.

The link between these families is that we each met Heather Elyse as the founder of Giving Hope Rescue Mission. She told us that she does adoptions differently, more ethically, and that we could trust her with our hearts and our adoptions. She took thousands of dollars – from some of us through her organization, for projects that were never reported on in Haiti, for several non-profits she started that have not produced financial reports and directly to her home address from families that were told they had to pay or their adoption would not be done.

She then bullied families, lied to them, punished when asked questions, and concocted increasingly bizarre and concerning stories that kept a large group of adoptive families emotionally bound to her and concerned for her – her children, her finances, her marriages, her future. She processed only a few adoptions and then claimed to have facilitated 80+ adoptions from Haiti.

Standing at the distance that most of us can stand now – with our children moved to different organizations or brought home through our own hard work and legally moving our children to other agencies – we can see the deception and manipulation.

We believe collectively that something is wrong with Heather Elyse Savage. Something is seriously wrong. And if her actions did not impact children we would probably never choose to continue to be involved in this situation. We would not spend our time writing, making phone calls, begging to be heard and for something to be done.

Several families contacted the agency, Embraced by Grace, in Florida. We believe that this is the agency that placed 2 additional children with Heather Elyse this year. We believe they chose to place the children in her care despite our concerns.

And now we watch this story play out in Indiana related to the neglect of one of those recently placed children. He claims that Heather locked him in his room and withheld food.

And We. Are. Not. Surprised.

She left dozens of children, including 10 of her “own” behind in Haiti when she abandoned her crèche. Children were brought out of that crèche starving to death. 12 pounds at age 2 is not acceptable.

As Christians it is not our duty to stand by Heather Elyse. God uses His people as His hands and feet on earth.  Children are her victims and the Bible is clear that we are to stand for the poor, the orphan, and the widow. The defenseless.

Heather uses the threat of lawsuit to keep people scared and quiet. But we are not concerned. A courtroom could not contain the number of families and individuals who have been financially and emotionally hurt by Heather Elyse.

God did not give us a spirit of fear but of power, of love and of a sound mind.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The W Family Shares Their Experience

Our family was matched with two children in April 2012. We had already been through a failed adoption and were extremely cautious about our next steps. We were told repeatedly that by contracting with this agency, Voice of the Orphan, and crèche, Giving Hope Rescue Mission, that we would get 100% of our money back if anything went wrong. We did our research and everything seemed very positive.

We entered into dispensation within the Haitian adoption process in November 2012. During the next two years we would become close friends with Heather Elyse, making several trips to Haiti as well as meeting her on multiple occasions in the US.

At one point, Heather wanted to place twins on our dossier that were "terminal" and "probably would not make it". Heather stated that she needed to get them to the US. We were told the kids would be ours legally but all guardianship would be given to the agency upon their arrival to the US and they would be taken to the hospital. We were not aware at the time that this type of situation would constitute immigration fraud. This never went any further because Heather said it would draw too much attention to our file.

We were included in a lot of emails and phone calls about the things Heather alleged were going on with the crèche. We were told about Wesmin, the creche director, and Guerdine, GHRM's lawyer, joining forces to blackmail her; she claimed that they were demanding thousands of dollars or they would shred dossiers. We were also told about raids happening at the crèche and even sent audio recordings of people being interviewed about them. Heather was very good at building up a case that supported all of these blatant lies. 

We were often told of other "crazy adoptive families" and people whose adoptions she wanted to cancel. She told us that it was easier to cancel a family on the US side of things because she could tell USCIS that the "families had gone rogue". She would also punish families that weren't "waiting well" by not giving them picture updates. Any time a question was asked about a family's adoption, she would tell them to stop trying to take control of the adoption. We knew of times that she would take a van full of kids up the mountains to "hide them from raids", we later learned that what she actually may have been doing was hiding the children from the Haitian authorities. 

When people started seeing the red flags and questioning Heather, she told us that they were "crazy adoptive parents" and that she was being persecuted. We stood up for her for a long time and even lost friendships in the meantime. When these stories first began coming out, I was close to Heather and believed her when she said that they were attacks on her because the families couldn't complete their adoptions. Then, people that I knew personally and respected started sharing their stories and we began conversations. After a trip to Haiti in June things just weren't adding up. I started carefully making phone calls to people that I knew that were posting their stories, I was determined to listen and be open to what they were sharing. I started questioning Heather on many of the things I was learning, her answers weren't adding up and it made her furious. 

Heather knew that the vulnerable children in her care were adoptive families' weaknesses; she manipulated our love and concern for the children and she preyed upon our faith. 

Concerned Families believes that the following text messages between Ms. W and Heather Elyse show Heather's total lack of basic respect for both the Haitian birth families, the Haitian children as well as the adoptive families.



Ms. W never received the receipts that she was requesting, nor did she receive copies.


"We hired the same attorney who helped free GHRM name from all accusations." GHRM is now closed and the children have been removed by IBESR or are home with their birthparents.



Many people have questioned the motive behind the stories written on the blog. If you read the above text message exchange between Ms. W and Heather Elyse you will see that the Haitian children were a commodity to Ms. Elyse. We have answered the call to be a voice for those children. Laying fear aside and declaring the truth without wavering. Not to hurt or destroy anyone, but to stop injustice.

"My whole being will exclaim, Who is like you, Lord? You rescue the poor from those too strong for them, the poor and needy from those who rob them." Psalm 35:10

"Because the poor are plundered and the needy groan, I will now arise," says the Lord. "I will protect them from those who malign them." Psalm 12:5

Will you join us in praying for the children that resided at Giving Hope Rescue Mission, for the Haitian families that were taken advantage of because of their poverty, and the adoptive families that are brave enough to speak out?

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Do You Have Something To Report?

It has been brought to our attention that Heather (Elyse) Savage was arrested and is facing charges of child neglect in Fulton County, Indiana.

Many readers have written to us with concerning stories regarding Heather and her children which we have passed along, with permission, to investigating agencies. If you have information that could help with the investigation, it would seem that now is the time to step forward for the protection of these 10 children. 

If you know of any child abuse or neglect that has happened in the state of Indiana, please contact the Child Abuse Hotline at (800)800-5556.

Our hearts are heavy today as we think about the trauma Heather has left in her wake. 

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Retirement Fund Lost: Statement from Sue and Greg

Since publishing the blog we have received multiple emails describing the deception that has taken place under the guise of Christianity by Heather Elyse. This is yet another example: A Christian couple giving their savings, believing that it would be used to help the orphan.

 Sue and Greg's story of deception:

After watching and listening to Heather Elyse (with her 7 children) give an emotional plea at a seminar last June and then receiving 2 personal emails from Heather detailing the hundreds of thousands of dollars that were needed urgently for her ministry, my husband Greg and I decided to donate a very large portion of our retirement fund to help her.  We checked out all of Heather’s websites as well as checking to make sure that Room for Grace, Intl. was a legitimate non-profit organization.  We were assured of that by email and phone call; so on July 25, 2013 we wired our donation directly into the Room For Grace, Intl. Chase Bank account in Tulsa, Ok. (Room for Grace was Heather's organization that took donations for Giving Hope Rescue Mission in Haiti.) On several different occasions, by phone and email and even in person, Heather promised us a full accounting of what our donation was being used for, not because we asked for it but, in her words, for “full transparency” and so that we were informed of “where every dime was spent”. However, she has not done that, to date, and we feel very strongly that our donation was not used for the purposes we intended it for which was to help with the many adoptions and care of these children.

It is our strong belief that Heather Elyse gained personal access to all of our donated funds and probably other RFG funds as well in early September 2013 when she was taken by private plane from Haiti to Tulsa before returning to her home in Colorado. From what we have been able to determine, by that time Heather Elyse and Michelle See were the only individuals from Room For Grace who had access to that fund.  We have put together and given to authorities a brief timeline of these events as well as documentation of emails, phone calls, texts, and other documents that support our belief that Heather Elyse did not use this donation for the intended or stated purposes, and that she has instead defrauded us through deception and manipulation.

We still believe that the Lord led us to make this donation at that particular time for a reason, even though at this point, it may seem like a very foolish thing to have done.  The evidence indicates that the money has not been used for the purposes we had intended it for, but the Lord has already utilized our donation to get various agencies involved in the investigation, so we feel that it is being used to expose the deception, abuse, and fraud that has been going on, and we are praying that every penny of it will be used for the good of all the families and children who have been harmed in this terrible, deceptive scheme!

We can be sure, just as Joseph was, that the Lord WILL turn what satan uses for evil into good for those who trust in Him!

“But Joseph said to them, “Fear not, for am I in the place of God?   As for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.”

With our love and prayers for God’s blessings upon all of you!

Sue and Greg