MBCH Children and Family Ministries

Ministering during a Crisis

Written by: Ramona Conrad-Cooper

Although a “shelter in place” order has been in effect for several weeks now, the work and ministry of the Children’s Home is still happening every single day.  Unfortunately, child abuse and neglect is still occurring.  Our frontline staff receive new cases which means they have to go pick up children and youth who have been removed from their homes and find either residential placement or a foster home depending on the level of need of the child.  While staff are careful and use items to protect themselves and others (like masks and gloves), it is still unnerving at times.  One of our direct workers and supervisor had to go pick up some children recently, and they said they practically bathed in hand sanitizer!   Our staff are amazing, though, and the teamwork is fantastic. 

Here’s a recent example:

One of our direct care staff members from Joplin had to drive to Kansas City recently to check on some children who were placed with a distant relative.  There were some concerns about the safety of the children which was confirmed when the worker arrived at the house and met with the children.  She had to call the police to assist in having the children removed.  Her supervisor immediately started looking for other placement for the children while the worker got the children and their personal belongings gathered together to return to Joplin.  Unfortunately, the back door of the vehicle would not close! The police tried to help to no avail.  Our program director in the Kansas City area was called and without missing a beat he brought another agency vehicle from our Byrne Campus in Peculiar to the worker to transport the children safely to Joplin.  He then took the other vehicle to be repaired and made sure it was returned to our Joplin Office.  The supervisor was able to find a placement that took all three children so they would not have to be separated.  God was protecting our staff and those precious children that He loves so much that evening, and our staff did an amazing job of working together to provide safety for everyone involved.  Please continue to pray for our staff as they continue to minister to children and youth in need during this COVID-19 crisis.