Many of you know the commitment our company, Tyler Technologies, has made to Both Ends Believing, but I’ve been asked to briefly describe why my wife Linda and I also choose to give to BEB personally.
The first reason is personal and is tied to our faith, as we believe we are called to care for the vulnerable, especially widows, orphans and immigrants. When we prioritize where to give each year we put organizations that work on behalf of those groups at the top of our list. Both Ends Believing clearly qualifies with its belief that “every child deserves a family”, and its use of technology, in cooperation with countries across the globe, to make that belief a reality.
The second reason we support BEB is tied to what I have learned in my profession. I’m the president of a division of a large software company and, in our business, there’s a maxim that says, “quality is free”. What this means is that the money we spend addressing issues at their root (fixing a software bug for example) ultimately is returned to us at later stages in the process. It’s the same with BEB. The root cause of so many societal issues in the developing world is children being raised in institutions, from which they ultimately “age-out”, unprepared, mentally, physically and sociologically, for life in society, or life one day in a family of their own. Often these are the children that are trafficked, these are the children recruited for gangs, these are the children that leave their country on long, dangerous journeys in search of a better life. If we can simply move them from an institution into a loving, prepared family, the odds are high that they will ultimately reach their potential and become productive members of their communities. In that sense, our work here is “free”, in that the downstream societal benefits in each country, and in our world at large, far outweigh the costs spent by BEB.
Finally, we have a strong conviction that money and the placement of children shouldn’t mix, especially within countries where children are being raised in institutions. In doing this work we have seen that when money is introduced into the process, the possibility of profit-seeking goes up, often with significant unintended consequences for children. BEB has made Children First Software (CFS) intentionally free ($1/year) in order to not attract those who would try to profit from the placement of children into families. That choice means that donor-raised money is needed to help expand the adoption and expansion of CFS within these countries. With that in mind, we give to BEB to ensure it can remain free and uncorrupted by the wrong influences.
We hope that you and your family have a blessed and happy Thanksgiving.