The first step is to penetrate the clouds of deceit and distortion and learn the truth about the world,
then to organize and act to change it. That's never been impossible and never been easy. ~Noam Chomsky

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Orphans and Vulnerable Children: The Importance of In-Country Care

I should have mentioned this earlier. I'm bad at self-promoting on this blog. But now in a last minute panic I've decided I need to stump for my workshops at this week's Christian Alliance for Orphans Summit VII.

A bit of background:
I am the coordinator of an advocacy campaign called the Faith to Action Initiative. We consist of several member organizations that work for children: Bethany Christian Services, Firelight Foundation, Orphan Outreach, Bright Hope, World Vision and others. I have been coordinating all aspects of outreach for the Initiative for four years. It is a job that has taken me all over Africa, to dozens of orphan care conferences in the U.S. and provided me with the opportunity to build bridges between the Christian adoption/orphan care movement and secular child protection groups like UNICEF. A challenging but incredibly rewarding job. A job that makes me think, forces me to find common denominators, and daily reminds me that meeting the needs of the world's children requires that we think far beyond the scope of individual adoptions, orphanages, or short-term mission trips.

What I'm doing this week:
The annual Christian Alliance for Orphans Summit is taking place here in Louisville this week.
The Faith to Action Initiative (meaning - member orgs/partners and I) are presenting in several workshops.
The Initiative is hosting the following

The Power of Partnership:
How to Effectively Engage the Local Church to Provide Orphan Care in Africa
(Thursday 4:00-5:00pm/hosted by the Faith to Action Initiative)

Journeys of Faith:
U.S. Churches and Their African Partners Share Inspirational
Orphan Care Stories and Lessons Learned about Partnership
(Friday 2:00-3:00pm/hosted by the Faith to Action Initiative

Why you should come to our workshops:
Amazing stories of churches supporting families and their communities to care for orphans.
Principles of practice for churches, individuals, mission teams and student groups wanting to get involved in orphan care. Lessons learned from those who have gone before you.
What to do/what not to do!
Africans. Speaking words of truth from their own communities. Africans speaking about African children. If for no other reason, you should come to the second workshop for this.

I will also be at the Faith to Action Initiative booth distributing both From Faith to Action and Journeys of Faith - resources that are a must read for anyone hoping to help orphans and vulnerable children.

More on both resources next week.

Hope to see you at the Summit!



  1. I soooo wish I could be there to soak this up. Want to start a ministry at our church and could use these resources. Praying it is a blessed time. And man, I want your job!! :)

  2. It all sounds really enlightening. Let me know if you're ever in my neck of the woods:)

  3. Sounds awesome! For those of us unable to be there, will there be recordings/transcripts available anywhere? If not, can you share with us the highlights?

  4. So.... HOW DID IT GO???

    (I'm guessing my original comment got eaten by the Great Blogger Outage of 2011).


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