Thirteen years ago, I was single, childless, jobless and partying around the world without any particular purpose or passion.
Then on Mother’s Day 2000– still on carefree vacay in India– my happy-go-lucky world came to a screeching halt when I came face to face with utter despair. Hungry children introduced me to a sad, sad world with no mattresses, no comforts… and worst of all, no mothers.
What the hell kind of place was this where precious, innocent kids were living like animals destined for slaughter? The memory of that night still brings tears to my eyes, the horrifying injustice of it. The filth, the smell, the heat, the smoke, the taste of the food overwhelmed my senses. To this day, I carry the weight of these children living without mothers and fathers, living without love, living without basic human dignity.
I am SO close to my own mom in Louisiana, and I have an enormous extended family. The very idea of not having my mother in my life sucker punched me right in the gut. Had no one else witnessed this but me? Where was the government? Didn’t these children have neighbors, relatives, anyone to help? Apparently not.
Someone had to take a stand for them, and out of the blue I felt it. Tag, Caroline Boudreaux. You’re IT. That’s the day I found my purpose in life and I’ve never wavered since. That’s how The Miracle Foundation was born. (www.miraclefoundation.org)
Anyone who has visited an orphanage with caring leaders can tell you that it is a place full of contrasts. There is a palpable love that transcends the sadness. There is a sense of team, of a family knowing that they’re in it together, even if it can sometimes seem like a prison. But there are persistent shortages and when hunger sucks the fun out of life– nothing else matters. They are just little kids. The lucky ones had a family at one time. Others were abandoned since birth, or Mommy died giving birth the next child, or was killed by the many diseases and misfortunes of the developing world.
BUT, out of great pain and sadness can come inspiration and change.
Right then and there, I decided to do more than fill tummies. I wanted these kids to get what I took for granted as a child. Today, The Miracle Foundation is a literally revolutionizing the way orphanages operate. Our goal is to help orphaned and abandoned children not only survive, but thrive. A full bowl is essential, but a full LIFE is necessary for a girl or boy to be able to become a successful, contributing adult.
Through our signature method, we take donations and deliver home-style experiences for children, with comfy beds, nutritious food, clean clothes, school uniforms, life skills training, tutoring, opportunities for friendship, and devoted well-trained housemothers who can welcome them home from school with hugs, and teach them the things my mom and dad taught me.
Best of all, we provide them a family – devoted, well-trained house mothers who will welcome them home from school, give them a hug and a snack,
That’s what the “Orphans Over Orchids” challenge is all about! For $100,000, we can partner with an overcrowded, struggling orphanage and give at least 100 boys and girls that cozy sense of home. We will give them moms!
For all of you who made the campaign a huge success, thank you! For those of you who want to join in the campaign, it’s not too late! Click here and get in on the first ever Orphans Over Orchids Mother’s Day Challenge. I am so thankful every single day for my mother. This year, instead of the bouquet, I gave Mom a big bunch of smiles from halfway around the world. Is there a better way to tell Mom just how glad I am to have her in my life?