Two orphaned best friends from Africa adopted by two AZ families will now be college roomates

Two boys who became best friends at an orphanage in Africa found each other again after being adopted in Arizona.

Kelvin Lewis and Afonso Slater, both 18, grew up in Mozambique after losing their parents to AIDS.

Two families from Gilbert, Arizona, adopted them eight years ago. The two households didn’t know each other well at the beginning of the adoption process but their houses were less than two miles apart.

Kelvin and Afonso have remained friends throughout the years and are now headed to the same college,  where they will be roommates in the fall, AZ Central reported.

Afonso Slater (left in both pictures) and Kelvin Lewis (right), went to the same orphanage in Mozambique  Kelvin (right) and Afonso (left), now both 18, found each other again after being adopted by two families in Gilbert, Arizona

They met a a very young age as they mothers were friends. Both boys became orphans within the same year.

Kelvin’s mother died of AIDS when he was only four years old.

The little boy, who didn’t know his father, stayed with other relatives at first, including his aunt and his grandmother, and spent most of his days on the street.

His aunt brought him to an orphanage one day as she couldn’t afford to feed him as well as her own children.

There, Kelvin found Afonso, whose parents both died of AIDS before the little boy turned four.

They learnt the rules of the orphanage together. Children who wet their bed had to sleep on the bottom bunks, AZ Central wrote. Those who didn’t could sleep in the top bunks.

Meanwhile, John Lewis, who is now the mayor of Gilbert, and his wife LaCinda, set out to adopt an eighth child.

Kelvin (left) didn't know his father and his mother died when he was four years old. Afonso (right) lost both of his parents to the disease before he turned four 

They traveled to Mozambique six times and faced four judges before they adopt Kelvin at the end of a six-year process.

Greg Slater and his wife Sharon, who later became Afonso’s parents, hadn’t planned on adopting a child but had a change of hear during a trip to Mozambique.

Their guide told them he knew children in an orphanage who needed families, AZ Central reported.

‘The minute he told me I got this overwhelming feeling I was supposed to adopt them,’ Sharon told the newspaper.

‘It haunted me the whole time I was there. I kept trying to push it out of my mind and it wouldn’t go away.’

The Slaters also went through a convoluted adoption process as Mozambique judges feared adopted children would end as victims of slave labor in trafficking rings.

They eventually brought Afonso back to the US in January 2008 and Kelvin followed six months later in the Lewis household.

The two Gilbert families didn't know each other  and became friends during the adoption process. Greg and Sharon Slater adopted Afonso (right) and Kelvin (left) became John Lewis and his wife LaCinda's eighth child

The two families didn’t know each other well at first and became friends during the adoption process.

They organized a surprise reunion when they found out Kelvin and Afonso had been best friends in Mozambique.

The two boys happily reunited.

‘I was so happy to have him around. I was grateful, of course, but being put in this new family of people that looked different than me… It was hard to acclimate,’ Kelvin told People. ‘I felt like if we were together, everything would be okay.’

 ‘To have someone from home I could share this new life with was incredible,’ Afonso added. ‘To have him living only two minutes away was something like fate.’

They both went to Gilbert High School together and joined the soccer team.

Now, Kelvin and Afonso have both been accepted to Brigham Young University and will be roommates when they head there in the fall.

Kelvin told People he wants to become a doctor in Mozambique and Afonso wants to get a degree in international studies to improve adoption between different countries.

‘We talk about growing old, like sitting on our porches in a rocking chair, and living next door to each other, having our kids be best friends,’ Kelvin told People. ‘We’re definitely more than friends, we’re brothers.’

The two boys remained friends throughout the years and went to high school together. Kelvin (left) and Afonso (right) have been accepted to the same college and will be roommates in the fall

Source: The DailyMail

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