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Hands of Hope: A Parent's Perspective
"I have watched brilliant college graduates who are devoting a year or more of their lives to the caretaking of children removed from desperate situations. The ultimate goal is to have these children returned to their parents or placed in a volunteer community foster home, or sometimes adoption. These young people pour their heart and souls into caring for these little people, sometimes for months, fully knowing at a moment’s notice they may be gone. I have cried EVERYDAY witnessing patient, loving young women and one young man (the world needs more Blakes!) tenderly deal with meltdowns, special needs kids, and circumstances and stories sometimes unbearable to hear. The neighborhood and safety measures put in place to create a peaceful and loving and kind environment is nearly indescribable.

I am SO proud of my daughter and her leadership role as the licensed foster parent of her home. The millennials I witnessed this week give me hope for a better world. Please keep the babies, little children, and staff of Casa de Esperanza (House of Hope) in your prayers." -
Sarah, Claire's Mom

"After my daughter graduated from college, she decided to take a gap year. She began researching and found an opportunity to participate in the Hands of Hope Service Year at Casa De Esperanza. Just two weeks after graduation, she was off to Houston to take care of children. All I knew as her mother, was that she was moving into a foster home at a nonprofit agency in Houston, to become a foster parent to children in need due to abuse or neglect.

My daughter and 4 other recent graduates lived together in an 8 bedroom home taking care of 4 children all under the age of 5, some as young as 2 days old. Each of these young adults took turns caring for the children while also maintaining a household. These 5 people who had so recently been strangers quickly became a fine tuned family. Kids would come and go, as they do in many foster homes, but the bond between the adults helped them through the difficult times.

When my husband and I came for a visit, it was amazing to see what these young adults were doing. They became instant parents: taking children to doctor visits, staying up with sick children and falling in love with them.

While the details of the children’s backgrounds could not be shared, we too quickly fell in love with those in her care. We also felt a pull for the mission of Casa: striving to break the cycle of child abuse and neglect.

In a time when you often hear only what is wrong with the younger generation, all you need to do is see the amazing work these young adults are doing at Casa de Esperanza. If only we ALL could follow in their steps, our world would be a much better place.

If you know of a college student or other young adult, 21 years of age or older, who is looking to change the world, encourage them to apply to the Casa De Esperanza Hands of Hope Service Year." 
- Pat, Mikaela's Mom