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One last unexpected for 2020… And a look ahead to 2021

 Unexpecteds defined 2020, from masks to toilet paper runs, canceled church to at-home school. Many of these unexpecteds carried loss, some of it beyond words. And yet, as always is the case, hidden alongside (and sometimes within) those losses came so many unexpected gifts as well.  I’d like to add one last unexpected for 2020, […]


Collateral Beauty of COVID-19: Gifts We May Have Missed

We’ve all experienced disruption and difficulty from COVID-19, some of it severe. But amidst it all, many gifts have also arrived unexpectedly — some of them despite, and some even because of the hard things. At the CAFO “Small Matters” gathering last month, one workshop speaker asked participants to share unanticipated hardships they’d faced due to […]


Anxious this Year? Little Choices Can Make a Difference (“Small Matters” Keynote)

I’ve felt the tug of anxiety this year more than ever in my life.  I don’t mean the sharp, clinical kind.  Rather, it’s more like a low-grade fever.  Sometimes the feeling fades to almost nothing.  Other days it threatens to color everything I see. Many, many friends have confessed similar feelings.  It’s as if anxiety […]


Washington Examiner: US Children Facing Increased Risk of Abuse under COVID

The article Invisible Children in the Washington Examiner explains how COVID lockdowns and closures – while protecting children from catching or spreading the virus – have boosted risks of abuse while decreasing the likelihood anyone will notice. It begins with statistics on dramatic drops in reports of child abuse: from 51% in New York to 55% in Massachusetts. But […]


New: CAFO Study on the Rapid Return of Children in Residential Care to Family as a Result of COVID-19

COVID-19 continues to impact vulnerable children and families around the world. In response to the pandemic, some governments have required residential care providers to rapidly return children to families without proper preparation for the transition.  While family reunification should be a priority whenever possible, these mandates put many nonprofits in a challenging position by forcing […]


Small Choices Amidst the Crisis

Crises sometimes demand actions big and bold.  An Alamo stand.  A Dunkirk rescue.  A Selma march.  But just as often, it is small, easy-to-miss choices that – cumulatively – turn the tide.  Think of the resolve of the British throughout the siege of London, digging out of the rubble brick by brick each morning.  Or […]