Last week was our first time to attend the CAFO Summit Conference, and it certainly exceeded our expectations. CAFO is an alliance that brings together individuals and organizations from all different child welfare groups across the globe. It’s a faith-based group that’s doing a lot of valuable work primarily through the work of local churches to serve vulnerable children because - bottom line - children need families. If you follow us on Twitter, you may have witnessed our live tweeting from #CAFO2014. Lots of speakers, information, and good came from our time spent in Chicago last week. Some of our favorite highlights (in no particular order) were as follows...
- Listening to this guy’s story & hearing about the organization he started called Higher M-Pact.
- Breakout session called “Openness in Adoption: Serving the Birth Mother.” A birth mother and her daughter’s adoptive mom shared their stories and talked about how their relationship started off closed (16+ years ago) and is now open! They acknowledged that we all were at the conference because of a birth mother. Then the birth mom later said, “Can you ever have too many people who really love you?”
- Breakout session called “Shame: Healing the Story of our Lives” by Dr. Curt Thompson. Wish we could have listened to this one again! He spoke about how shame is just a part of our DNA, and it’s evil’s intention to dismantle your mind. For life to flourish on all sorts of levels, our minds need some integration and so we need to help each other with storytelling. Don’t tell your story all by yourself in insolation, he said.
- Landrieu & Congressman Franks spoke about the CHIFF Act, “Children in Families First.” If you like it, go tell your Congressman to support it, too.