[Get to know Mary] A heart for the orphans


It was late afternoon on May 28, 2013. We had traveled more than 40 hours to get to Battambang - Cambodia’s second largest city, about five hours from the country’s capital city. We were so ready for a hot shower and some sleep. 

As we arrived at our hotel, the kids from Asia’s Hope orphan home were standing outside anxiously anticipating our arrival.They did not know us, and we did not know them, but their hugs immediately revived my weary spirit.

Asia’s Hope is a multi-denominational, grassroots movement working in Cambodia, Thailand and India to provide quality long-term care for orphaned children at high risk of sexual and economic exploitation.

I was there with a team from Grace Community Church to encourage and support the organization’s indigenous-led staff and, of course, to love on the kids.

Each child living at an Asia's Hope home receives all of the benefits of a loving family: shelter, acceptance, medical care, an education, life skills training and most importantly, the transforming power of hope. Currently, Asia's Hope in Cambodia provides caring families for more than 375 orphaned children in 15 homes.


Throughout Northern Thailand, Asia’s Hope operates 10 orphan homes serving more than 200 hill tribe children. We traveled to Doi Saket about 30 minutes north of Chiang Mai. 

While we were there, we had the privilege of attending the dedication service at the “Doi Saket 1” home. The old building had burned down in December 2012, and was quickly rebuilt by the generosity of a number of churches, Grace Community included.


The reality is there are millions of orphans in our world today who deserve nothing less than our greatest efforts. They are the most vulnerable and marginalized group throughout all of society.

Children can be prevented from becoming orphans through sustainable community development targeted at improving the overall health standards, food security and livelihoods of individuals and communities.

This is something near and dear to my heart, as my husband and I adopted our daughter, Olivia, seven years ago.

How we conceptualize and understand the “Global Orphan Crisis” - and work towards policies and strategies for protection and development that have at their heart the best interests of the orphaned child – is perhaps one of the most difficult and contested issues in global development today. 

Learn more about the GLOBAL ORPHAN CRISIS.

Learn how you can support the work of Asia’s Hope by visiting their website at asiashope.org.

Quick facts about Asia’s Hope

  • The organization’s day-to-day operations are run by able and trusted indigenous, national leaders.

  • The ministry currently spends less than 15% on administrative expenses.

  • Asia’s Hope is a Christian organization, founded on and governed by biblical principles, dedicated to extending God’s love and mercy to the “fatherless and the widow.” The organization welcomes involvement and input from a diverse cross-section of Christian groups and individuals as well as from non-Christians.

This is my family

Orphaned children don't just need food and shelter — they need moms and dads. They need families. Watch this short, 3-and-a-half minute introductory video, "This is my Family."

Currently, there are approximately 153 million orphans in this world. If each orphan stood hand-in-hand at the equator, they would stretch around the world THREE TIMES.