New Mercies Ministries hosted a volunteer and donor appreciation event on February 3, 2023, to celebrate 10 years of family preservation ministry in northeast Indiana.
On Friday, February 3, 2023, New Mercies Ministries celebrated 10 years of family preservation work by hosting an event on the campus of Headwaters Church, on Wells Street in Fort Wayne, in the newly renovated chapel. Bonnie Doolittle, Founder and Executive Director of New Mercies Ministries recognized the 153+ volunteers from 37 churches in the area that served 676 children and parents over the last 10 years. Special recognition was given to volunteers and donors as well as the pioneers of the family preservation movement in northeast Indiana which started on February 3, 2013; those pioneers are Kim Plattner, John Suciu and Troy Schrock, all of whom were in attendance and guests of honor at the event. Dinner was served followed by a time of worship, a keynote address by Greg Byman, senior pastor at St. Joe Community Church. Live music was provided by Daniel Gruber on cello, Ellen Ford on piano and vocalist and Merrit Dusseau vocalist. A special thanks to Nicole Capriglione of Capriglione Creations for her work in providing one-of-a-kind, handmade pottery for 5+ year volunteers.
New Mercies Ministries offers short-term child hosting and family coaching during times of parental crisis. Families may seek help with situations such as homelessness, hospitalization, mental health crises, domestic violence, drug/alcohol rehabilitation, and incarceration. Parents can self-refer or may be referred by social service agencies, homeless shelters, hospitals, drug treatment centers, prisons, schools, police stations, etc. The organization works quickly to match children with screened, trained, and approved volunteer Host Families. Parents voluntarily request care for their children and maintain full custody while they seek to restore stability while they walk alongside a volunteer Family Coach who closely monitors the hosting of children. The ministry has a 99.5% reunification rate.