It is not imperative for one to be a mother to shower children with love and care. Caroline Boudreaux, Founder Of Miracle Foundation, has proved that it is the spirit of empathy and compassion that can transform the lives of the most downtrodden section of the society. Besides providing a safe environment to orphans, this American woman has knuckled down to the task of ameliorating their condition by helping them get out of the circle of poverty.

SheThePeople.TV spoke to her about her journey, hurdles and her will to make a difference in the lives of millions of orphans.

Excerpts from the interview:

What is your story behind the inception of Miracle Foundation?

At 28, I was an account executive at a TV station making more money than I had ever dreamed of, but I felt empty inside.

I was sure there was more to life. About that time, I decided to travel the world with a friend. As we plotted our course, she insisted that we visit India so she could meet a young boy whom she had been sponsoring.

I was sceptical and thought it was a scam and that she was wasting her money, but by May 2000 we had made our way to the small Indian village where the child whom my friend was sponsoring lived. I couldn’t believe he was real. My friend was absolutely thrilled to meet him and his family.

A few days later we were invited to dinner at a local home. Nothing could have prepared us for what we were to encounter there: Over the course of two decades, our host had taken in a hundred orphaned children. I had never such kids before and here were over a hundred vying for our attention and love.

Right at that moment, I decided I had to do something to help these parentless children. The idea for Miracle Foundation was born there.

I have learned that people have a strong hunger to help others and make a real difference. People want a purpose. Legacy, giving, philanthropy, and making a difference are important to people.- Caroline

So I returned home, left my lucrative career, and founded a nonprofit committed to these parentless children. I had never worked for an NGO before, but I was convinced I could work through every barrier in my way.

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Caroline Bordeaux 1.
Caroline Bordeaux

How has your journey been till now?

When I started on this mission, I believed it was all about helping children. But over the years, I have learned that people have a strong hunger to help others and make a real difference. People want a purpose. Legacy, giving, philanthropy, and making a difference are important to people.

Mentors have taught me that our work is about finding ways for the spiritually hungry to feed the physically hungry. When you bring these two groups together—the ‘haves’ who wish to give and the ‘have nots’ who need their help—miracles happen.

What were the various challenges you faced during the journey?

The biggest challenge faced by an NGO is the ability to help enough people. That, of course, is a matter of raising enough money to care for the thousands of children we support. And, the way to do that is to show donors where their dollars are going and the impact they’re having.

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Our program is delivered by professionals, with the experience and expertise to work with at-risk youth. We have a team on the ground in India visiting each orphanage we support every month, providing guidance on how to resettle children with family whenever possible, nudging, encouragement, and caregiver training.

Finally, the measurability of our interventions ensures we know the exact impact of donations, which enables us to provide full transparency and maintain integrity to our donors. 

Miracle Foundation aims at empowering women as well. How is that done?

We seek to provide orphan girls with health, happiness, a loving home, and an education.

Mentors have taught me that our work is about finding ways for the spiritually hungry to feed the physically hungry. When you bring these two groups together—the ‘haves’ who wish to give and the ‘have nots’ who need their help—miracles happen.

In May of 2012, Miracle Foundation began supporting the Anbarasi orphanage with consistent funding and capacity-building training. The children got access to clean water, began enjoying three nutritious meals per day, and started having regular visits with a doctor.

Caroline_WithOrphans
Caroline With the Children

How do you plan to expand in the future?

We’re exploring partnerships with other state governments and organizations in the orphan care space. One initiative, we’re particularly excited about is partnering with organizations doing great work in adoption and foster care.

And if a child doesn’t have extended family who can provide quality care, we ensure the care that child receives in an orphanage is the best possible.

Also, we’re working on eight of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals issued by the United Nations in 2015. Developing key partnerships with other governments, companies, and organizations working on these Global Goals is a huge focus for us, to make an even bigger impact for parentless children.

What keeps you upbeat about life?

I’ve always been open to saying “YES” to new opportunities—new hobbies, new connections, new friendships, new foods, new experiences, new countries. And it’s opened countless professional, and personal doors throughout my life. While I’m not sure what new opportunities are around the corner for me, I’m certain I’ll be open to saying “YES” to them.

pic credits: Lynne Dobson

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