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Terri Coley

Post-Adoption Coordinator at Show Hope

In our work supporting and resourcing families, we have seen time and time again how vital community is to those on the adoption or foster care journey. The team at Miriam's Heart is experienced, insightful and understands the deep needs of this journey. The Symbibazo Center will help them support families in an even greater capacity. Adoptive and foster families will experience the gift of being seen and not alone. Families in need will be greatly blessed by the resources and connection they access through Miriam's Heart and the Symbibazo Center

Jim Bishop

Adoptive Father I NJ

Miriam's Heart, Inc is all Heart! Thanks for the support and love you share to so many of us. Whether fostering, adopting, or planning to expand your family. Miriam's Heart cares and it shows in all they do. It doesn't go unnoticed and it isn't unappreciated. Keep up the great job!!!

Allison Highton

Adoptive Mom I Hillsborough, NJ

Having done the research, met with lovely adoptive families such as yourself and a whole lot of prayer helped to solidify early on that we were meant to be on this journey.  That gave us the confidence to know that this was the journey God had for us.  Just having that faith that this is where God wanted us regardless of what we’ve faced through this, we know this is where and what we should be doing.  I think that is the most important component for us.  It’s okay for us to face trials knowing that we’re on the path God has for us.  Boy aren’t we grateful for that confidence in our faith walk because after [our daughter] died, I don’t know if I could have pressed on had we not had that confidence in God’s placement for us.  I think there have been God winks along the way for me in the paper chase of the dossier that helped me know God was walking with us.

The other component that has been absolutely crucial is having like-minded friends who have done this adoption journey or who have a heart for the orphan.  Being with a group of believers who encourage us and help us has been a necessity because there are always the naysayers that are in the family that make us want to second guess...having access to support within the adoption community is so important

Jen Palumbo

Adoptive Mom I NJ

Including the matching grant and others' donations to our Lifesong account, we raised about $10,000 towards our adoption expenses!  This was a tremendous help.  Probably, our total cost was $35,000.  We will never forget how you guys and others were part of bringing Anne into our family.  This is a forever impact.

Sheri Glorioso

Adoptive Mom I NJ

I would love to share our story.  We couldn't have done it without you and all the wonderful people at Miriam's Heart and Lifesong. Also, I have been wanting to reach out with a letter to everyone letting them know how much we appreciate ALL that Miriam's Heart has done, but my "momnesia" is at an all time high and I get lost in my emotions when I think about God's hand in bringing us together as a family.

We truly appreciate every kind word, words of encouragement, financial support, spiritual support, connecting us with Allison and Russ, the ETC conferences, your warmth and knowledge and your realism of life as a mom with children from "hard places".  Your honesty and openness always touches my heart and reminds me that I am not alone.  So thank you and the wonderful staff at MH.  We are forever grateful for the work you do and your multitude of blessings. 

Juana Canna

Adoptive Mom I North Brunswick, NJ

Miriam’s Heart was the catalyst that brought our boys home. Miriam’s Heart gave us the courage, tools and support to take a leap of faith.  Without their guidance my husband and I would have easily lost our way.  They provided priceless first hand knowledge and educational resources.  

It was through Miriam’s Heart that my husband and I felt equip to adopt two older boys.  Because of their support, we eagerly share our story and take every opportunity to advocate for older kids. Miriam's Heart has been instrumental during both of our adoptions. Them came along side us and provided the emotional support and resources needed to help us prepare ourself for our boys. Years and months after our boys came home - they continue to be there for us. I couldn't image going through our adoption without Miriam's Heart. 

They are my life line!!

Amanda Mancusi

Adoptive and Foster Mom I NJ

Miriam's Heart means more to me than I can express in words. It is led by an amazing group of men and women who volunteer their time and efforts to support families and raise awareness about family preservation, orphan care, adoption and foster care. Miriam's Heart has supported my own family's journey, educated me to have right thinking about orphan care and given me an opportunity to actually do something for what breaks my heart. 

Joi Fisher-Griffen

Author, Adult Adoptee, Advocate

Four years ago, at a legislative event at the state house, I had my very first conversation about adoption. It was also my first time engaged in a conversation with adoptees, adopted parents, and birth parents. That day I learned the power of talking with members of the adoption triad. That day I learned support groups existed and at that moment I wondered if normal conversations about adoption would have occurred when I was younger would I have thought differently about my own self worth.As they spoke I learned that much of their healing came through attending support groups. I could not find a support group in my area so I eventually attended one group that was an hour north and the other was an hour south. 

Attending these sessions helped me reframe my thinking. In my personal circles I began to share my story. I learned there are many adult adoptees silently suffering and two needs surfaced; Adult adoptees expressed an interest in a support group and adult adoptees wanted to provide support to adopted and foster youth.I researched organizations to learn that many were no longer fully functioning and all were unsure how to use me. 

I never knew volunteering would be so difficult.During a conversation at work about my memoir Finding Joi: A True Story of Faith, Family and Love  my colleague shared information about her dentist and this great adoptive and foster family support organization they ran. I did some research, found them online and asked to meet with the director. I was still wrestling with if my story had value and if I would be welcomed by adoptive parents as an adult adoptee who found her birth family. 

I didn’t know if the adoptee's voice mattered to them but I made the appointment anyway.What was supposed to be a fifteen minute conversation turned into more than an hour of talking, tears, and laughter. During that first meeting Liz said “There is a place for you here at Miriam’s Heart and we are going to figure it out”. I became a volunteer, later a member of the leadership team, and now the Adoptee & Survivor Team Coordinator.

Jodi Jackson Tucker

Christian Alliance for Orphans

Miriam’s Heart has expanded the reach of the Orphan Sunday initiative into the Northeast and beyond, and we are excited about this new expression called Stand Sunday. Elizabeth Occhipinti serves on our leadership team as a liaison for foster care and the Northeast region.  Her passion for kids in foster care, as well as the vision of others, led to the development of Stand Sunday as an opportunity for the American church to turn toward our own waiting children.

Suzanne Singer

Foster Mom I Hillsborough, NJ

Having the support of Miriam's Heart upon a placement of a foster child gives us peace in knowing they have access to a very large community that is always willing to help with whatever is needed for the child that is being is placed within your home. Miriam's Heart helps keep the calm in what can sometimes be a very crazy few days. 

If it wasn't for Miriam's Heart network of support I am not sure my husband & I could do what we do.

Dwight G.

Hershey, PA

For me, I have seen the power of adoption in different people’s lives and that has fostered the desire for adoption in my life.  My wife, Allison, was adopted as a baby, and I have observed the huge blessing that having a family (and a family with a deep Christian heritage) has had in her life.  On my most recent overseas missions trip to Haiti, I had the opportunity to love on some kids in an orphanage.  The kids were close in age to my own kids, and  I couldn’t imagine what life was like for these kids compared to the home with a mom and dad that I had growing up and that we are giving our kids now.  I recognized a need for forever families.  With my job I have worked with kids and teens in the foster care system and have seen and heard how this has helped to shape their lives.  I can’t help but wonder how their lives could be different if they had a family.  All of these stories and more have grown in me a desire for adoption.

Allison G.

Hershey, PA

The words, thank you, cannot express the gratitude we have for your matching grant gift.  When we started the adoption process a year ago, we knew God was leading us to do this, but we still doubted how we could come up with $42,000!  It has been so beautiful seeing how God provides time and time again for our family.  Thank you for partnering with us on our journey. 

Melissa Carrero

Hillsborough, NJ

Thank you for having such an informative and inspiring gathering. God has placed in on my and [my husband's] heart to adopt; however, we would not have pursued it so soon as the system is overwhelming. We would have probably procrastinated  for years, but it's great to know we have a support system for it and be around others who have gone through it. 

Jason Weber

National Director of More Than Enough.

Each of our grant winners embodies a dedication to collaboration and innovation that is absolutely essential for communities to go from not enough to more than enough for children and families in foster care. For far too long, our communities have felt paralyzed and powerless against the large national foster care numbers that are most often shared in public settings. However, when communities simply focus on the smaller number of children in care in its own community, it quickly becomes clear that more than enough is not only possible, it can happen in a relatively short time. Miriam's Heart and our other grant recipients are shining examples of how faith communities are committed to pressing toward the reality of every child thriving in a safe and supported environment.

Scott Millard

Pastor I Randolph, NJ

Miriam's Heart has been hugely beneficial to us as a church in helping us learn 'How do you build a culture that cares about the orphan'?

Alicia Terhune

Pittsburgh, PA

Miriam’s Heart has expanded the reach of the Orphan Sunday initiative into the Northeast and beyond, and we are excited about this new expression called Stand Sunday. Elizabeth Occhipinti serves on our leadership team as a liaison for foster care and the Northeast region.  Her passion for kids in foster care, as well as the vision of others, led to the development of Stand Sunday as an opportunity for the American church to turn toward our own waiting children.

Rich Metcalf

Program Director Lifesong

Every child who is adopted, or who is cared for in the Foster system, needs the healing and restoration which comes from compassionate, intentional relationships. Foster and adoptive families need a supportive community to help them bring that healing to their children.   Lifesong for Orphans is blessed to partner in ministry with the team at Miriam’s Heart.   While we serve many ministries who understand the need to help adoptive families raise money to fund their adoptions, only a limited number are actively engaged in the holistic support that foster and adoptive families desperately need.  The opening of the Symbibazo center is further evidence of the compassionate care which the Miriam’s Hearts team brings to their community.  Families and children will continue to find encouragement, support and healing through their engagement with Miriam’s Hear and we, at Lifesong, are thankful to be able to cheer them on in their ministry efforts.   


Kristi Zeigler-Dawicki

Recruiter I NJ DCPP

The partnership that we share with Miriam's Heart has been extremely beneficial to both the families and the children that we each serve. Working and teaming together for the greater good is truly what matters. The need for foster and adoptive families is not going away any time soon and anytime we can work with organization who supports our foster families and children like Miriam's Heart does, we feel truly grateful.

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