guaThe BEB Team welcomes Dana Deree to the board!
We asked Dana a few questions to get to know him better. He is already making great contributions to BEB’s mission, giving more deserving children every day the chance to grow up in a loving family.
What about BEB’s work motivates you? What about the mission resonates with you?
My brothers and I lived in several foster and group homes. We are all now doing well thanks in large measure to caring adults. It is now my duty to serve other vulnerable kids. Even though the backgrounds of the board, staff, and many BEB supporters are different, it is clear they share this calling.
How does your career experience or personal testimony relates to BEB’s mission and work?
Having adopted from Mexico, served as a foster parent in Nicaragua, and worked on inter-country adoption across the globe as a diplomat, I know first-hand how important it is for developing countries to have access to modern case management systems. The most essential benefit of these systems is facilitating access for every child to a safe and loving family. Since many child welfare agencies struggle with this resource intensive challenge, I’m inspired by the fact that BEB has taken on the mission of partnering with these countries to meet this essential need.
In your own words, what does family mean to you?
Family is a unit bound by love, support, acceptance, and sacrifice for one another.
Why do you believe it is important for vulnerable children to have a loving family?
Food and shelter are obviously important, but a loving family feeds the soul and lifts the spirit. Every child deserves to feel special. With the type of caring protectors and champions provided by a family, there is no limit to what an individual can achieve.
What do you personally envision for the future of child welfare?
We can see clearly the damage done to society when generations of children grow up without their physical and emotional needs being met. I know many individuals and organizations like BEB view these kids as precious souls. I know child welfare advocates in developing countries sacrifice a great deal for these children, lacking only resources and organizational assistance. Overall, I’m optimistic that together we can make a tremendous difference for millions of vulnerable children.
What do you hope BEB will achieve in the near future? In the long term?
I have every expectation that BEB will continue to deepen its partnerships with the child welfare agencies with which it already works even as it makes new links with countries wherever there is a need. The will and the know-how are strong. This will lead to permanent placement solutions in loving families for countless of institutionalized children.
Comments, In Dana’s words…
After I returned home to Arkansas following twenty years in the U.S. Foreign Service, I wondered what doors would open allowing me to make a positive contribution. When my friends at BEB reached out with an invitation to serve on the board, I was tremendously honored. I look forward to doing whatever I can to advance its noble mission.