It’s a beautiful thing to have people believe in your mission.

Monday we said a tearful farewell to Justin & Lauren Hiebert, as they are heading home after their one year of service at Roots & Wings. They have impacted every child and staff member in a profound way and we still can’t quite imagine our days without them.


They saw the world differently and viewed things in a most passionate way. Lauren’s kind heart found ways to love the kids so well despite a new language, a new culture and a new country. Justin became an instant hero, a role model to our little gents and a source of safety and protection for our little ladies.

They exemplified marriage, family and love in a real, honorable way. The kids quickly understood that they belonged to each other and worried for one when the other wasn’t present.


They stuck it out with us at our worst. They rejoiced with us at our best.

Rebeca asked the children to raise their hand if they had anything they wanted to say to Justin and Lauren. No one quite dared except Juliedt who stuck up her little arm in her usual, no-nonsense manner. “Los voy a extrañar,” she mumbled in her rough little voice. Juliedt expressed so simply what each child and adult was feeling.

Yes, we will miss them dearly.

Justin and Lauren – thank you for believing in our mission. Thank you for your time and selfless service at Roots & Wings. You worked with such grace, humility and dedication and left Roots & Wings a better place because of it.