stories of our community at work
Pam sat with rapt attention as Praxis Partner Andy Crouch shared his “Authority vs. Vulnerability” framework (also known inside Praxis as simply “The 2x2”) during a Nonprofit Accelerator event in September 2019. She began to imagine how mentoring families could identify their own hopes and fears through this lens of authority and vulnerability as they served youth aging out of foster care in her organization. What she couldn’t figure out was how to apply this idea directly to the youth, simply because they had so little authority to begin with, only vulnerability.
Determined to find a solution, Pam spent an hour with Andy with a pen and sheet of paper, sketching what would become the Redemptive Connections Framework. They determined that there are two primary value drivers that determine a vulnerable youth’s ability to thrive – Belonging and Self-Efficacy. A Redemptive Connection is formed when mentoring families step into the life of a vulnerable youth, offering unconditional Belonging while giving them the space to develop Self-Efficacy. Pam knew this insight was a gamechanger for her organization. At her annual staff retreat in November, she introduced her team to the Rule of Life and the Redemptive Frame before diving into the newly developed framework. Over the course of a few days, Pam’s team completely rewrote their training manual for mentoring families.
Since then, the Redemptive Connections Framework has become a critical tool for Connections Homes. Today, you’ll often see Pam and her team scribbling the framework on a napkin in the middle of sessions with their mentoring families. Ultimately, Pam hopes to bring flourishing to the lives of more youth as the organization invites families to intentionally step into brokenness and connect with a sacrificial spirit so that another can experience restoration. It’s an example of the “child-first design ethos and scalable interventions” that we believe are possible through the lens of the ORI: New Solutions in Adoption & Foster Care.
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