Bob Hefner Jr., is a gracious supporter of BEB and an active leader of our board. We asked him about how he discovered our organization and why he envisions a better future because of the work BEB is doing.
How did you find out about BEB?
Bruce Graham (BEB Chairman) and I have know each other for many years. We have traveled together on mission trips to Cuba and I have seen Bruce’s heart for children in a number of shared circumstances. Bruce and I also have attended the same Bible Study class at our church for more years than either of us wish to remember. Our class has a time each week where we ask to pray for those things that are of pressing concern to us whether that is a sick friend or relative or some personal involvement or concern. During a few such prayer times Bruce asked for prayers for specific issues involving BEB.
As someone who has long been involved in seeking to meet the needs of vulnerable children, his requests were of particular interest to me. I also know and greatly respect Bruce as a leader in any number of areas and his willingness to lend his talents to BEB really impressed me. An initial curiosity led to a series of conversations that cemented both my interest in and determination to seek to find ways to contribute to BEB’s future.
What were your first thoughts about BEB after learning about who we are?
Blown away would be a good way to start that conversation! Bruce was kind enough to invite me to hear a presentation by a extraordinary woman who walked me through the state of the Children First software and I was quickly able to grasp the potential that is wrapped up in BEB’s efforts. This is truly a “game changing” effort and represents potentially the first worldwide answer to the most difficult issues facing children in orphan care.
What do you hope for or imagine the future of child welfare to be because of BEB’s work?
As I said BEB is truly a game changer. Their software has the ability to reorient orphan care on a worldwide basis. Moving carefully from one partnering country to another BEB will literally impact the lives of every child in a residential orphanage setting. To my knowledge there is no other effort out there that shares BEB’s potential as both an immediate and long term solution to moving children from confinement to family.
Do you believe family care is the best option for vulnerable children to grow to their full potential in life? Why?
As someone who has worked for over 30 years with children in distress my greatest hope before finding BEB was to work toward implementing “Best Practices” in residential care facilities. But all who are involved in those efforts recognize that even at their very best they are a poor substitute for a family setting. The constancy of care that a family setting represents is the best hope for building responsibility and character. There simply is no substitute for family.
What in your own life sparked a passion for your generosity and serving others? Why did you feel called to support BEB?
I truly believe that God put a deep concern for the welfare of children on my heart and it has been a foundational part of who I am for as long as I can remember. So it was only natural that I would be drawn to BEB as the best hope for changing children’s lives for the better. My wife Laura and I take very seriously our stewardship responsibility. While we are involved in a number of outreach efforts; our primary hope and calling is to make a difference for children in distress – one child at a time.
What do you cherish the most about your own family?
I have been blessed with seven beautiful grandchildren and one awesome great granddaughter (and counting I hope!). They are each blessed with a special nature and personality that is unique to them. That is something we do not emphasize enough in my opinion. Who we are is not only how tall or short or what color our skin is – each of us also has a personality that was ours before we were born. It is our unique stamp of individuality. There can be no doubt that there are not two people with exactly the same personality anymore than any two of us are absolute duplicates. Each of my seven grandchildren are strong in their faith and beliefs. That is a product of the influence of their family – but all who love them play their role. That is something I truly cherish.
Thank you Bob for your passion for helping children and your overwhelming love and support. We are so thankful to have you as a part of our growing BEB family; becoming an even more compassionate and powerful force to change the global child welfare system and give every child the family they deserve.