As I have transitioned from Executive Director onto the Board of Directors there have been many tears knowing that I will see our girls and staff much less often. But I have absolute confidence in our staff on the ground who are caring for the girls daily, and in our new CEO, Heather Bland. It has been a joy and a privilege to introduce her to everyone and see her win their hearts as she laughs and jokes and gently teaches.

As a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, and over 10 years as a Program Manager with a clear expertise in facilitating Strengths Based Care practices and Resilience Based family therapy, Heather has the exact skill set we were looking for to lead our programs at My Refuge House. To read more about Heather’s incredible experience, click here.

Restoring one life at a time, Crystal S. Sprague, MSW

Cebu, Philippines…a place where Appalachia meets Chicago (the two places I have called home the longest in my life).

In the week I have spent here, I have already experienced the fullness of community, connectedness, and hospitality found in Appalachia.  I have also experienced the vibrancy, and hustle and bustle of Chicago.

As I move into the next chapter of my life with My Refuge House, I find myself most grounded by one word: JOURNEY.  I am thankful for Joey (my husband) and our sons (Jack and Ike) for committing to this journey with me.  I am so thankful for Crystal Sprague and the rest of the board, the staff, and the girls…for all who claim the family that is My Refuge House…for welcoming me and for inspiring depth, authenticity, resilience, and joy for the journey.

I look forward to getting to know the passions, fears, hopes, and prayers of all who love MRH.  In the coming year, I will be focusing on two areas:

+ Connecting fully to the history, mission, and purpose of My Refuge House

+ Mapping out what I’m currently calling the 2020 Vision, which includes Administrative Team Development and Strategic Planning efforts for My Refuge House in both the US and Philippines.

My Refuge House is in a strong position.  I am excited to capture and define this strength and ways we can both sustain it and build upon it. I will be reaching out to many of you in the coming year, and I hope you know that I am always open to anyone reaching out to me.

I will write more about my trip when I return to the United States.  Until then…Thank you for joining me on this journey.

Peace, Heather