A wonderful friend of mine, Rachel, started a non-profit called The Beyond Project* (www.thebeyondproject.org), which is an organization that connects the beauty and wellness industry to provide services to underprivileged communities. The Beyond Project has already sponsored a number of events, but I had the privilage of taking photos at one of the most recent events they sponsored called The ReFresh Conference. The ReFresh Conference is an event created to refresh, inspire, and equip parents of foster and adopted children (see http://www.occ.org/refresh/ for more information).
The moment I arrived at the conference, I was greeted with a warm welcome from Rachel. She was already hard at work cutting and styling a foster mom's hair. The three of us started chatting about her foster son, and in only a matter of minutes, I was moved to tears as she shared how she saved (my words, not hers) a little baby boy. The baby boy was born to a mom who was addicited to various street drugs and when he went home with his foster mom at only days old, he began thriving immediately. The baby boy has grown into the happiest little toddler and she is praying that they will be able to adopt him. Such an incredible story, and I was honored to hear her tell it.
It's not every day I'm in the presence of something this powerful. Being able to witness layer upon layer of selfless giving - the foster mom to the baby boy, the volunteers to the conference - is so humbling. I am grateful for those who serve in any capacity, but on this day I was particularly grateful for these selfless foster and adoptive parents. God bless you all!
"The Lord Bless you
and keep you;
the Lord make his face shine on you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn his face toward you
and give you peace."
Thank you to Rachel and her faithful team at The Beyond Project for their hard work that is touching lives in and around our community!
*The Beyond Project's services can include haircuts, makeup, nails, yoga, fitness, nutrition and more. They partner with non-profit agencies that include sex trafficking, domestic violence, at-risk youth, teen moms, homelessness, and foster kids.
This lovely lady above is my dear friend, Rachel. So blessed to be inspired by her and her growing non-profit, The Beyond Project!