OFY Cares Blog

Yes…I’m still here. It’s been 5 or 6 weeks since I’ve taken the time to post a blog. Lots has been happening. We’ve had two State Site Inspections: one for our agency’s two year certification; one for MEPA. We’ve been evaluated and approved to become a Private Child Placing agency (yeah!!). I submitted a Request for Qualifications to Cuyahoga County Government to see if we’ll be selected for a contractual agreement for foster care services (we were…yeah again). We underwent our Council On Accreditation Site Visit on October 21st and 22nd for Hague Accreditation. We will likely hear by the end of November. Our auditors have been out for several days to conduct the annual audit of the agency’s finances.  Friday, we had our annual Cuyahoga County Department of Children and Family Services Contract Monitoring Site Visit.

A few weeks ago I woke up in the middle of the night to the sound of a rainstorm just blasting the roof of my home. You know that sound don’t you? It makes you feel glad to be safe and dry inside your home and not outside where it’s raining ‘cats and dogs.’

As often happens, I couldn’t fall back to sleep and so I ventured outside and watched the torrential downpour from under the cover of my front porch. I love a good thunderstorm. It shows just how powerful God can be with a ‘snap of his fingers’ as He controls the weather and then how the weather can influence us.

As I watched the rush of the water spewing out of my gutters that were clogged with all those leaves that I hadn’t gotten a chance to remove, my mind (and my heart) flashed back to February of this year.

Our last blog by one of our Administrative Assistants, Megan Holmes, reminded me of a situation that occurred several years ago that took place right in our office waiting room. Our four sayings that line the wall in our hallway always remind me of it too. It has to do with the third frame that reads, “Don’t underestimate your impact on others.”

I was going through the gobs of paperwork sitting on my desk when our receptionist in the front of our office called me. “There’s a woman up here that wants to talk to you. Can you come up here to see her?”

All OFY employees are familiar with the OFY mantra; it is posted in the hallway, four phrases printed in a bold font and hanging in four simple frames:

YOU ARE HERE FOR A REASON.
YOU ARE HERE TO SERVE.
DON’T UNDERESTIMATE YOUR IMPACT ON OTHERS.
IT’S NOT ABOUT YOU.

But these signs are not just a decoration; they resonate in the hearts and actions of all OFY employees. I would like to share what these words mean to me as an OFY employee.

My first exposure to anywhere outside of the United States was over 16 years ago when I went with a team of men from my church to work on a church building in Quito, Ecuador. I was impacted very deeply on that trip. It was then that I truly realized how fortunate I was to have been born in and to live in America. I worked side by side with Quichua Indians as we mixed mortar with shovels in a wheelbarrow, carried 50-pound bags of cement mix, built walls with concrete blocks, ate potato soup, tried to understand the language they were speaking (a strange mixture of Spanish and some local dialect), etc…

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