UPDATE FROM THE CLEBURNE COUNTY COORDINATOR
God is on the move with The CALL in Cleburne County!!
We seek His plans for this ministry. He is answering our prayers and our dreams for 2017 already! Our primary goal was to make prayer a priority. We now have a Prayer Team Coordinator and two members of our leadership team will be part of a state led prayer team. Our goal for empowering our church representatives is off to a great start with our first ever Church Representative Appreciation Workshop. We firmly believe that empowering each church to lead the way in wrapping around their foster families is creating a culture of foster care. Another major goal of our county is to recruit enough full-time foster homes to consistently have 20 homes open for children coming in and out of foster care. We currently have nine that fit that criteria. Three families just graduated from the foster parent training classes and we have enough interested families to create another class in April.
“Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.”
Proverbs 16:3 NIV
The Project Zero Heart Gallery is on tour in Cleburne County! We desired to have it here for a long time and would love for everyone to get a chance to see it in person. You will be changed. You see, every face on this Gallery is a real child with a real story in need of a forever family. These aren’t stock photos in a magazine or on a website. These are children throughout our state that do not have the ability to return to their family or origin due to no fault of their own.
The Heart Gallery was at the First Assembly of God in Heber Springs on 3/5. It will be at Heber Springs Baptist on 3/12, New Life Church on 3/19, and Heber Spring United Methodist on 3/26.
for more information.
FABULOUS FEBRUARY MEETING!!
Thank you to the First Assembly of God church in Heber Springs for hosting our informational and support meeting last month. We had great attendance and a wonderful presentation by Lane and Denise Keeter. Thank you to all the volunteers for serving our families!!
NEW CALL TSHIRT DESIGN
Cleburne County foster and adoptive parents participated in a weekend training in Little Rock dealing with issues related to foster and adoptive care. The weekend was full of great speakers who spoke on hard topics dealing with issues concerning caring for foster children.
We have a team and you can be a part of it!! By clicking on the link below, you can join our team of walkers or you can donate to our team, The Call in Cleburne County. All funds raised go to support The CALL
, Immerse Arkansas
and Project Zero
as they work to find the right home for every waiting child in Arkansas. No more waiting!
THANK YOU ALI JONES!!
Thank you to Ali Jones and her unique way to serve the CALL and to do something for children in foster care! Ali will be competing for Miss Teen Arkansas International Pageant in April. She choose the CALL and Mattress Firm Foster Kids for her pageant platform and community service. She came up with the idea to provide journals for children who come into care as a way for them to express themselves through written words or art because that has helped her in the past. Pictured below is Ali as she gave the journals to Ashley Herring and Felicia Stone on behalf of the CALL. We thank you Ali for choosing the CALL and your heart for helping children in foster care. We wish you the best on your upcoming pageant.
You can help grow the love for The CALL by making a donation, during the 12 hour online giving event Arkansas Gives on April 6, 2017
between the hours of 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.
Arkansas Gives is a project of Arkansas Community Foundation (http://arcf.org/
), a nonprofit organization promoting smart giving to improve communities.
The Community Foundation of Arkansas is challenging all Arkansans to make a donation on a single day in recognition of the vital work your local charitable organizations do.
As a special incentive to give, each gift made through Arkansas Gives on April 6,2017, will be matched with additional bonus dollars; the more you give, the more bonus dollars The CALL will receive. The CALL will also receive additional cash prizes for raising the most money and recruiting the most individual donors. Learn more about this one day of giving at
CHURCH REP APPRECIATION
We had a great turnout at our first ever church rep appreciation/workshop. We had 14 churches from across the county represented with 17 church reps in attendance!! The morning started with prayer and training on how to build a “culture” of foster care within the church. Who in your church would make a great liaison to The CALL? How can we help your church fulfill the mandate to help the fatherless? What does that look like practically (food and diaper drives, meals and wrap around services for foster families in your church, Stand Sunday, giving monthly). These are just a few of the topics discussed along with heartfelt stories and laughter! This year’s Church Rep Appreciation Award was given to JoJo and Andrea Riggs for their outstanding work in setting goals and bringing foster care to the forefront of their church’s mission! We pray that all of the church reps left equipped, encouraged, and empowered to be a liaison between The CALL and their church. Thank you for your hard work church reps!!
NEW PRAYER TEAM COORDINATOR
Our prayers have been answered!! Please welcome our new Prayer Team Coordinator Kasey Goddard!! She is already off to a great start posting prayer requests and updates on our Prayer Team Facebook page. If you would like to join our prayer team, please contact us at 501-539-2776
A VERY EXCITING VALENTINE’S DAY
We want to send a big THANK YOU to all that helped with our cookie dough fundraiser, those that bought cookie dough, and local contributions made towards our special edition of Date Night for February. Because of all the contributions made, The CALL of Cleburne County was able to purchase each of our 23 couples a $75 Visa gift card to go towards a special Valentine’s date. They were hand delivered with a special note last Friday. The surprise was well received and very appreciated by our parents.
A big thank you to Heber Springs Baptist Church for their “Date Night” ministry where they provided childcare for 24 children so that our couples could enjoy a night out on Valentine’s Day.
UPDATE FROM THE CLEBURNE COUNTY COORDINATOR
Foster care is more than a trend. It is more than just doing something good for the kids and families in our community. “Doing good” will not get you through the placement of a child who has lasting effects from Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and throws big tantrums. “Doing good” won’t get you through the pain of rejection when you pour out your heart to a child who isn’t able to attach and receive your affection. “Doing good” will not help you when your child suffers emotional delays and has poor self-control.
In a recent sermon I heard by David Platt, Counter Culture: Father to the Fatherless, he makes the point that foster and adoptive care starts at the cross. At the cross, we can realize we too had little to offer and Christ pursued us. He persevered in our rebellion and brought us to himself. When we can see this, it changes how we see foster and adoptive care. It is no longer about the cute and easy little child but leaning into the hard, tough children that make life hard on us! At the cross it makes sense to love the unlovable and uncontrollable. As Christians, we hear the cries of children in foster care and those without a family of their own. We do not bring the hope of a better lifestyle or better education. We offer the hope of a Father on high who sees, protects and defends and a savior that pursues and rescues!
This is the heart of The CALL in Cleburne County.
Thank you to First United Methodist Church in Heber Springs for hosting our January meeting. We had a great turnout with several new families volunteering for a variety of things. Thank you to all of the many volunteers who served us yummy food and watched our children during the meeting. We could not do what we do without the love and partnership of the local church. THANK YOU!!
The CALL in Cleburne County recently had a weekend leadership retreat in order to gear up for the new year!! The team spent two days brainstorming and discussing goals for 2017. It was a very productive weekend, and we have a lot of great plans for this year that we are very excited to carry out. We also spent some time connecting with one another and discussing our roles within the CALL and how they can be improved upon. We got to know each other better, learning about each others strengths and weaknesses and how to help each other in our individual jobs with the CALL.
HOW THE COMMUNITY SUPPORTS THE CALL
Thank you to the Daisy Patch Quilters who made beautiful quilts and pillowcases for our foster children!! Polly Reynolds, pictured above, represented the group in presenting them to the CALL.
Thank you Kristen McCormick for your donations to the CALL Mall! This sweet girl donated pajamas and a Walmart gift card to help foster children in Cleburne County. We thank you Kristen for your donation!
UPDATE FROM THE CLEBURNE COUNTY COORDINATOR
I just wanted to give a little end of the year update on The CALL and what this organization has achieved over the years!! We think it’s pretty awesome!!
Since 2007, The CALL has…
- Launched local organizations in 41 of 75 counties in Arkansas. God has blessed us with incredible growth, launching 4 counties in 2015 and 7 in 2016! That puts us in half the counties in Arkansas!
- The counties that make up the 54% of the state we are actively recruiting foster homes in represent 73% of the children in foster care in Arkansas.
- We held 580 information meetings statewide where 4380 families learned more about foster care and adoption.
- We have hosted 279 local Foster/Adopt Parent Training classes where we have trained 2108 families. Through these efforts we have helped our partners at DCFS to open a total of 1493 foster and adoptive families.
- More than 479 children have been adopted by families recruited by The CALL.
- Currently, around half 50% of the open non-relative foster homes in Arkansas were recruited by The CALL. As a result, thousands of children have been cared for by these families.
- Research shows that The CALL has effectively raised awareness and moved the Church to action: In an article in the Journal of Public Management and Social Policy, Michael Mulroney revealed the results of a study conducted on the recruitment efforts of The CALL. He said, ͞the program has been successful in boosting the awareness of people in local congregations and have positively affected the intentions to pursue foster care or foster adoption… Respondents indicated that without exposure to The CALL they would not have become involved in foster care or foster care adoption.
THE CALL WORKS!!
Click here to view our year-end video!!
DECEMBER MEETING WAS A SUCCESS!!
Thank you to The Church of the Nazarene for hosting our December meeting last year!! We had a great turnout with many of our families and several new people attending the meeting. The church provided a great dinner and entertained the kiddos while we had our meetings. Santa Clause made a special appearance too!! Thank you, Church of the Nazarene!!
NEW HOMES OPEN THIS MONTH
In December, we welcomed 2 new foster families to The CALL family!! We are so excited that the Baeder family and the Shott family are now open and available for our precious children. We are excited to see what 2017 holds for these families.
Thanks to a private donor, children in foster care have received their very own bag since 2010. Thanks to Lindsay Davis and her mom, these bags have been specially monogrammed for each individual foster child. These bags are so special to our children and we would like to say thank you to our donor and to Lindsay and her mom for making these kiddos feel so special.
The Arkansas Dream Center delivered winter coats to each child in foster care in Cleburne County in December. Pictured is Teresea Sturch with the Arkansas Dream Center who hand delivered these coats to the CALL house. One gentlemen even asked to pray over his donated coat before delivery! Thank you Arkansas Dream Center and to everyone who covers our children in prayer!
Defiance Metal delivered two large boxes of goodies and a monetary donation from their employees to the CALL mall last month.
THANK YOU SO MUCH Defiance Metal employees for your generous donation to the CALL of Cleburne County!
First Security Bank made a donation to The CALL which was a result of generous donations made by their Gold Club Members and from their employees that gave on “Blue Jean Fridays.”
Thank you to First Security Bank and all those who made a donation to the CALL!
Parenting is hard. Foster parenting is even harder. One of the fundamental goals of The CALL in Cleburne County is to support our foster families. One of the ways we do that is by encouraging our foster parents to nurture their marriage. This year for Valentine’s Day, we would like send EACH of our foster parents on a date to dinner and a movie. An individual has graciously volunteered to do a cookie dough fundraiser to help send our parents on a date. If you, your youth group, or Sunday School class would like to help us by selling or purchasing cookie dough, please contact Lori at (501)206-8674.