Why The Orphan Crisis Is Everyone’s Problem

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We hear it often: hundreds of thousands of children are without families, and homes, all over the world. Whose problem is this? What does that really have to do with us and what can we do about it?

On today’s episode of The Honestly Adoption Podcast, we talk openly with Think Orphan’s Phil Darke about why the orphan crisis is everyone’s problem. If you’ve ever wondered how you can be involved, beyond or in addition to foster care and adoption, this is an episode you won’t want to miss!

Listen Now:

Notes and Quotes:

Think Orphan is a part of Providence World which is an organization that exists to inspire and equip others to love orphaned and vulnerable children with excellence.

“We are really trying to help people understand the breadth and scope of this massive crisis…how they are all interconnected and how we really, practically, can get involved.” -Phil Darke

So how can we practically get involved in this global crisis?  Can you break that down for us?

  • Read OrphanologyKnow Orphans, and Orphan Justice
  • Foster and Adoptive Parents:  ASK for specific help, so others are invited into what you are experiencing.
  • Offer practical help to foster and adoptive families (ie: mow their lawn)
  • Be a resource to other families who are struggling (come alongside a single parent, mentor, etc…)
  • Work towards poverty alleviation
  • Disciple people in their identities
  • Church planting

“Some people are called to foster and adopt and others are not…but everyone is called to love orphans and vulnerable children in their affliction.”

“Orphan care starts in your home, even if you don’t have any children.”

[shareable cite=”Phil Darke”]Family strengthening is where orphan prevention starts.[/shareable]

“Alleviating the orphan crisis starts with preventing the breakdown of family because if we can {do this}, if we can strengthen families that exist right now, there is less work involved.”

If we could simply disciple males to be men of God, we would alleviate most of the orphan crisis and most of the human trafficking around the world.

You can’t do everything.  Dive into the space that the Lord puts on your heart.  See it as interconnected.  We aren’t competitors, we work together on this journey.

Can you talk more about pre-emptive family strengthening and discipleship?

Discipleship is a word that means “training up” to understanding.  It means walking at the feet of someone – an active training.  It is to enter into others lives, to not just tell but to show them.

Mentoring is important, BUT…

If you are going to mentor, make sure you can commit to being involved, in some way, for the long haul.  Don’t commit and then bail on that kid.  It is just one more example to them of people loving them and leaving.

Pre-emptive family strengthening is the idea of responding before the problem happens, not just reacting when it is already a crisis.

“Every child is one caring adult away from being a success story.”

We want to show them, because how do they know what it is if they aren’t shown?

“I tell foster and adoptive parents, ‘Listen, you’re changing the world and you’re never going to be celebrated like celebrities…but the kingdom of heaven is moved and the world is changed by what you are doing.'” – Mike Berry

What would you tell someone who is feeling hopeless today?

  • At the end of the day, what you are doing is having a much greater impact than what you can see.
  • You are doing something that matters.
  • God loves these kids more than you ever will.
  • We get to be a part of changing lives!

Resources and Links:

Meet Phil and Becca Darke

Think Orphan Podcast

Providence World

La Providencia Orphan Care Homes in Honduras

The Refresh Conference

Road Trip for Dads

Recommended Books:

In Pursuit of Orphan Excellence by Phil Darke and Keith McFarland

Orphanology by Tony Merida and Rick Morten

Know Orphans by Rick Morten

Orphan Justice by Johnny Carr and Laura Captari

[reminder]Do you have any questions or comments for Phil about how you can be involved more in orphan care?  Contact him at pdarke@providenceworld.com and/or leave a note below.[/reminder]

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Why The Orphan Crisis Is Everyone’s Problem

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Mike and Kristin Berry are the Co-Founders of The Honestly Adoption Company and have been parents for nearly two decades. They are the authors of six books, and the host of The Honestly Adoption Podcast.

Sarah Gray

Sarah Gray is the executive assistant to Mike and Kristin Berry. And she is the best in the land. In addition to providing a warm and friendly response to the many emails our company receives on a weekly basis, she also manages Mike and Kristin’s speaking and meeting schedules, and makes sure that team events go off without a hitch.

Nicole Goerges

Nicole Goerges is a Content Contributor & Special Consultant for The Honestly Adoption Company. She works with Mike and Kristin as a recurring co-host for the Honestly Adoption Podcast, and co-host of Kitchen Table Talks, exclusive video content for Oasis Community, along with Kristin. She is a fellow adoptive mom, and former foster parent.

Matt McCarrick

Matt McCarrick is the Content Production Specialist for The Honestly Adoption Company. If you’ve loved listening to our podcast, or enjoyed any of the videos trainings we’ve published, you have Matt to thank. He oversees all of our content production, from video edits, to making sure the tags are correct on YouTube, to uploading new videos to Oasis, to hitting publish on a podcast episode, he’s a content wonder!

Karen Anderson

Karen Anderson is the Community Engagement Specialist for The Honestly Adoption Company. She spends the bulk of her time interacting with, and helping, people through our various social media channels, as well as providing support for Oasis Community members through chat support or Zoom calls. In the same spirit as Beaver, Karen is also passionate about connecting with parents and making them feel loved and supported. Karen is also an FASD trainer and travels often, equipping and encouraging parents.

Beaver Trumble

Beaver Trumble is the Customer Care Specialist for The Honestly Adoption Company. Chances are, if you have been in need of technical support, or forgotten your password to one of our courses, you have interacted with Beaver. He is an absolute pro at customer care. In fact, he single-handedly revolutionized our customer care department last year. Beaver is passionate about connecting with parents and making them feel loved and encouraged.

Kristin Berry

Kristin Berry is the co-founder of, and Chief Content Specialist for, The Honestly Adoption Company. She spends most of her time researching and connecting with guests for our podcast, as well as direction, designing and publishing a lot of the content for our social media channels, blog and podcast. She loves to connect with fellow parents around the world, and share the message of hope with them.

Mike Berry

Mike Berry is the co-founder of, and Chief Marketing Specialist for, The Honestly Adoption Company. He spends the bulk of his time and energy designing and building many of the resources you see within our company, as well as social media and email campaigns. His goal is to use media as a means to encourage and equip parents around the world. He is also the co-host of The Honestly Adoption Podcast.