by Krista Williams
Business Development Director, Mission 1:27
When I became a mom for the first time through the miracle of international adoption from Ethiopia, I quickly learned that I was not only adding a child to my family but I was also adding a network of adoptive-momma sisters all over the country. These are the women who shared my heart ache of waiting (…and waiting and waiting) for a referral, of getting the frightening calls that a child who doesn’t yet share your last name is sick and an ocean-width away, of pouring out their heart to love and be loved by a child who’s past has taught them not to trust. Having these women in my life who are authentic and honest about the full spectrum of adoption feelings – the beautiful and the broken – will always be one of God’s greatest gifts in my life.
What started as online friendships through adoption agency forums, social media groups and blog connections became real when a group of us decided to meet-up in person once a year for a weekend trip. The tradition has continued annually for five years now, and this past summer we decided to plan the trip of a lifetime back to the country that initially connected us – Ethiopia.
Of the twenty-three moms in our tight adoption circle, eight of us were able to make the trip with the goal of spending time with one another and with ministries that we could support in honor of our children and their first families.
On our first full day in Addis, I had the opportunity to share Mission 1:27’s empowering IGA work by taking my friends to visit eight of our talented, hard-working, determined women who have started their own IGA businesses to provide for their families. Watching my friends from America, moms to a collective thirteen Ethiopian children, sharing injera, hugs, soda, prayers and words of encouragement with these proud working mothers in Ethiopia was beautiful.
Even more beautiful was when those women came back to the U.S. and organized a campaign to collectively fund a Mission 1:27 IGA business. The funds they raised were recently used to cover the start-up costs for Mission 1:27’s first cooperative business – a café launched by two single moms in the Meseret Kristos area of Addis Ababa…
Kasech and Shashe
I dream of the day that my friends are able to sit in that little café and drink coffee and eat shiro as paying customers and business partners, knowing that their investment has changed two families’ stories in a powerful way.
If you and a group of friends or family members want to learn how you can invest in a family’s future, visit our IGA webpage.
If you’re interested in planning a similar trip to Ethiopia to see our work first hand, you can find more information about our missions program on our missions webpage.
Krista is passionate about preserving families by empowering women to find meaningful, sustainable work. Her heart is for mothers in Ethiopia to have every opportunity to make their kids breakfast each morning, to dress them in their school uniforms, to send them to get a life-changing education, to tuck them into warm, safe beds at night, and to watch their children grow to be proud, difference-making citizens in their birth countries. Krista and her husband, Mike, have two children who joined their family through adoption from Ethiopia.