As many of you know some of our board had the opportunity to attend the Christian Alliance For Orphans Summit last week; here are some thoughts from our board members.

From Matt Borst:
CAFO 2014 was a great time of meeting new people who are like minded in trying to help children all over the world.  We had the privilege of taking our whole family.  Our kids were able to meet other kids who are part of a multicultural family and it was so much fun to see them interact and enjoy each other so much.

Some of the kids our kids got to meet and hang out with.

One thing that I remember was a quote that was shared by poet, Shawn Welcome.  “What if you woke up with today, only the things you thanked God for yesterday?”  Wow, that is a great perspective on life.  Be sure to check out some of Shawn’s work here

Secondly, I was challenged by a young man named Austin Gutwein, who started an organization called Hoops of Hope.  He shared 3 things that were very encouraging to me;
1. Do what you love, and let others do what they love
2. Think like a child
3. Do not give up
Here is his website to find out more about what Austin is doing

Lastly, I was so encouraged by meeting new friends, and catching up with old friends.  It was a great time of encouragement and great information.

From Terry Waggoner:
I had the privilege of sitting in a workshop taught by Krista McCoy about raising children in a transracial family.  I was challenged with thoughts like “Don’t say that you are color blind, say that you love all colors” and “We need to live in the reality that we are all unique and celebrate that we are all beautifully and wonderfully made.”

Secondly. the theme of “Everyone can do something to help vulnerable children; if we all do a little, a lot will be accomplished.” was very hope filled.

Lastly, the words of Dr. Purvis are always amazing.  She stressed the importance of infants needing love and how vital proper nutrition is at such a young age for proper brain development.  You can learn more from Dr. Purvis at

From Stacey Borst

One powerful workshop I attended was called “Life in Limbo.”   It was a simulation of life in the foster care system.  I was chosen to act out the role of a foster parent. Although it was only role play, it left a powerful impression as my senses were opened to the confusion and chaos that many children experience in foster care.  And to the blindness that I felt opening my home to a child with open wounds and an unknown history or future. 

Added to that was the lasting impression of a 19 yr old that encouraged us with three thoughts:

Do what you love and let others do what they love.

Think like a child.

Never give up.

Simple words that were communicated with grace and have stuck in my heart.