the ever widening Village
This morning I called a family who is fostering two children to welcome them into the Village. Its the first time we’ve worked with the foster care system and I was very proud to be a part of this amazing act of love. As the foster mom and I were talking, I realized I knew these children. I have known these children for nearly 2 years. They were one of the very first families we helped back in late 2014 when I founded the Village. My heart broke. I was devastated and here is why: all along I have known in my heart that no matter how much we give and do and provide it can’t fix everything. There are gaps and problems we cannot solve no matter how hard we try.
Let me state clearly that the foster family these little ones are with is wonderful. The mom comforted me while I cried into the phone, assured me of how much love and affection and attention the children are receiving and that they are doing everything in their power to be sure the children are safe and happy. In fact, she hadn't even heard of our organization, it was the social worker who had signed them up for our services. My sorrow came from knowing a family wasn't able to keep it all together, despite their best efforts and our ongoing assistance.
Too often we have to say no to families because we as an organization lack the financial resources to do as much as our hearts compel us to do. We strive to fulfill each and every request to the best of our abilities. We pray that it will be enough. We rely on faith and hope and generosity to come through for us when our inventory run lows. And for the most part, it works. But today I learned firsthand how truly powerless we are (and by “we” I mean me, because as Founder I struggle to differentiate myself from the Village).
In the Village, each child matters. Each child is special and loved and valued. Just the way you love and value your own child. We are striving to raise everyone up, to help families who are struggling, to ensure every baby has the same access to the “basics” as our children. The sense of failure I feel right now is tremendous. What could I have done differently? If we had unlimited resources, would that have been enough to make a difference here? How many other Village families are teetering on the brink of being split-up? Could I have seen this coming? Did I miss something. Why wasn’t I able to do more?
This is a reminder to all of us how fragile the balance is for so many families living right here, next-door to us. As an organization we have helped over 675 families (which is well over 1,000 children) since our inception in November 2014. We are making a huge and wonderful impact on a daily basis. But there is always more we can do. If you’ve read this far then your heart clearly feels compassion and empathy for these babies – please click around on our website to donate or get involved, we truly welcome any and all support!