Scott Brown has led numerous sessions at past CAFO Summits on successful life transitions for aging out orphans and foster children. Those sessions spurred the creation of this Alliance Aging-Out initiative, and today he is serving as its coordinator on behalf of the Alliance.
Hear from Scott how God touched his heart for aging-out orphans:
“Today I am honored to serve on the board of a Christian mercy and orphan ministry based in Arad, Romania, Romanian Christian Enterprises. I also helped to start and lead a growing orphan care ministry at Cherrydale Baptist Church, in Arlington, Virginia.”
In 2002, during my first short-term visit to Romania to help lead a camp for orphaned children, God captured my heart with the needs of older orphans. During that trip I met a young man named Victor (name changed), and as he told me his story I felt God clearly calling me to get involved in helping others like him around the world. Since that time this passion has only grown as I have heard so many stories like his…
Victor had grown up in the orphanage system, but at age 16 he aged-out of the orphanage. For the first few months he was able to find friends with whom he could live, but very soon he found himself homeless… and without hope. One day as he was living on the street a man found him there. This man was a carpenter, and a godly Christian. He and his family took Victor in, provided him with craft training and a job in carpentry, and most importantly introduced Victor to Christ. At the point I met Victor he was a student in seminary and had a dream to share the love of Christ with others. When he spoke with the orphans at the camp we hosted, you could have heard a pin drop… for here was someone who had been right where they were, and who had found hope on the other side.
Since, I have learned how many millions of Victor’s there are out there. And I believe more wholeheartedly than ever that the God of the universe is calling us, his Church, to stand in that gap and to help meet the needs of children aging-out of orphanages. Like Victor they need the hope of Christ, a place to live, life skills and vocational training and job so they can support themselves in society.
This Alliance Aging-Out initiative is about highlighting examples of Christian ministries that are on the front lines meeting those needs, and creating a space where we can share best practices with one another.
Jeremiah 29: 11
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
Proverbs 31: 8, 9
Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.
Psalm 68: 5, 6
A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families, he leads forth the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land.