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Lutheran Family & Children’s Services 401 West Blvd. North Columbia, MO 65203 573-815-9955 www.lfcsmo.org

February, 2014 LFCS Newsletter

Happy New Year 2014 Lutheran Family & Children’s Services It’s been a wonderful year of celebrations for our MidMissouri Lutheran Family & Children’s Office. We celebrated National Adoption Month with an open house on November 20, 2013. Over 20 families attend the event and enjoyed Jingle Bells, cookies and crafts provided for the children. Such a blessing to see how LFCS and the staff have changed the lives of these beautiful families. Our birthmothers have made a wonderful selfless decision when making an adoption plan for their child. To see the work first hand is joyful to say the least. Pictured above top row (left to right) Claycie Gerlt, Christine Corcoran, Jingle Bells, Michele Towns. Bottom row left to right Andrea Pauley and Janeene Johnston. Not pictured, Eileen Long.

Resource Parents Services

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100% of our clients demonstrated an increase in their parenting knowledge.

93% of births born to our clients in 2013 were born healthy. The state average is 73%. 

In 2013 we served 219 birth parent clients.

We had to turn away many clients due to lack of staffing resources.

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85% of our clients continued or completed their high school, college or vocational program. 100% of births born to our clients in 2013 were born healthy. The state average is 73%.

In 2013 we served 119 teen clients of which 19 of them were fathers.

ADOPTION SERVICES 

In Mid-Missouri, in 2013 we placed 10 children in “Forever Homes” through our domestic, independent and inter country adoption services. We provided services to 85 adoptive families from the Mid-Missouri region. Provided information to an additional 111 parents or families through Adoption Information Meetings and individual consultation.  

Mid Missouri worked with 4 birth families who chose adoption for their children in 2013.

In 2013, we provide foster care services in the Mid-Missouri area to 3 children for a total of 24 days.


Lutheran Family & Children’s Services, was proud to be part a sponsor for Friends of Diversity at the Columbia Values Diversity Celebration. It was the 21st Annual Celebration of the Life & Teaching of Martin Luther King, Jr. held on January 16, 2014. The Keynote speaker, Steve Pemberton wrote A Change in the World . An Orphan boy, a mysterious past, and how he found a place called home. It was a story close to our hearts at LFCS and our mission to help build families through adoption assistance, foster care and crisis pregnancy counseling. Mr. Pemberton signed a copy of his book and we have it at the LFCS office . If you are interested in reading his story, please stop by our office and you may check the book out.


February, 2014

Page 3

Welcome Melody Bezenak to the our LFCS Advisory Board Melody has lived in Columbia for almost thirty years and is a graduate of Rockbridge High School and Columbia college. She married her high school sweetheart, Kris Bezenak and they have a 17 month old daughter. Melody spent 15 years in the non-profit world prior to taking a job with Veterans United a year ago. Melody is excited to be part of the non-profit world again and to see what it looks like from the volunteer side. “I am grateful for the opportunity to serve as an Advisory Board member for an organization that has such a positive impact on families and children. It is an honor to be part of an agency with such a long history of local service. Our Christmas holiday party for the Successful Young Parents was held at Saint Andrews Church on December 8, 2013. Thanks to our Board Members and staff the families enjoyed a fun filled evening complete with Santa and Mrs. Claus. LFCS Resource Parents program provides birth parents counseling and support for parenting teens to help them become self sufficient.


The LFCS Advisory Board Members, LFCS Staff, Church members and friends of LFCS made Christmas special for two families. We honored a mother that is making an adoption plan with our agency. We helped make Christmas special for her 4 children that she is parenting. What a blessing to see the joy of the family when they received such wonderful gifts of toys, clothing and food. We were honored to have the help from a previous family that adopted their son from LFCS 10 years ago. Their son wanted to adopt a family and LFCS for the holidays and we were so thrilled. Janeene Johnston, Social Worker suggested a family she completed their homestudy as circumstances led them to adopt their grandsons, ages 12 and 14.

Lutheran Family & Children’s Services 401 West Blvd. North, Suite B Columbia, MO 65203 573-815-9955

www.lfcsmo.org God’s love in Jesus Christ empowers Lutheran and Children’s Services of Missouri to help families, children, and individuals experience greater hope and wholeness of life.

LFCS staff also worked with VAC and are thankful to them and the generosity of our wonderful community with the outpouring of gifts to help 29 birth parent families we serve. LET US REMEMBER THAT THE CHRISTMAS HEART IS A GIVING HEART, A WIDE OPEN HEART THAT THINKS OF OTHERS FIRST. ~ George Mathew Adams

Lutheran Family & Children’s Services has a FACEBOOK PAGE FOR OUR MIDMISSOURI OFFICE Please take a minute to Like our page and follow the great work in our office. Liking our page and sharing our posts helps promote our agency.


2014 february newsletter