Last year, Erica Currie was trying to think of a practical, personal, hands-on way to teach her kids about giving back. During her childhood in Amarillo, Erica had friends that lived at The Children’s Home. Then as an adult in Oklahoma City, her Sunday School class adopted a cottage at a local children’s home. Now living back in Amarillo, Erica saw The Children’s Home as an opportunity for her kids to bless and get to know kids close to their own ages.
Erica contacted The Children’s Home and asked to be paired with a middle school girls home. Knowing she couldn’t adopt an entire cottage on her own, she sent out an email to friends and neighbors with daughters in middle school asking them to be a part. The group she invited whole-heartedly embraced the idea.
Each family was paired with one of the girls from the cottage for whom they purchased Christmas gifts. Together, they delivered the gifts and spent time at the cottage with the girls drinking hot chocolate and making friends.
“We had this sweet, sweet experience, then said, ‘OK. What now? We want to see these girls again.'”
The group decided to spend Valentines Day with the same girls’ home – sharing Blue Sky burgers, cupcakes and devotionals. “We wanted to take activities we do as a family and bring in our cottage girls in to be a part.”
It didn’t stop there. When Erica discovered the cottage was going to serve at a camp at the beginning of summer, she called on her group again. They wanted to join the girls in the their service experience, so they put together summer tote care packages for the girls to take with them.
Now, they’re scheming about how to invest in the lives of these girls in a meaningful way this fall.
Erica has loved doing this project with a group of like-minded folks. Buddying up each of the cottage kids with one family means there isn’t a huge financial burden for anyone, and it allows each family to build a closer relationship with one kid while being a part of something even bigger.
The Children’s Home is small and flexible enough people can easily bring their gifts and talents and be involved in ways that are in line with their passions. Kids just need to be loved on.
I’d love to see each of the cottages adopted by different groups in the community – businesses, sports teams, extended families, Sunday Schools, neighborhoods… These kids really benefit from knowing that there are people out in the community that care for them. It would be amazing to know that every cottage is being loved on from the outside. – Erica Currie
from an interview with volunteer Erica Currie