Nations Foundation: The Orphanless Orphanage

by: Scott Bakken

Nations Foundation is an amazing organization that exists to bring the stories of modern reformers and missionaries to the forefront. We chatted with founder, Joel Parker to talk more about their latest project, "The Orphanless Orphanage' and how you can get involved. 

Tell us more about Nations Foundation and what you guys do?

Nations Foundation is a group of writers, photographers, film makers, and graphic/web designers who are working to advocate for missionaries and missions organizations around the world. We tell the stories that deserve to be told.

What is the inspiration behind Nations?

We are inspired by radical missionaries, like Brother Andrew and David Livingston, who have gone to the most dangerous places on earth to broadcast hope. We admire reformers of old, like William Wilberforce and the Clapham Sect, who stopped at nothing to see that justice prevailed. We are moved by modern-day reformers, like our friends at Rancho de sus Niños, who have given over their lives to bring healing to the nations.

Talk about your latest film ‘The Orphanless Orphanage’. Can you tell us more of the story behind this project?

When we first met the Horner family at Rancho de sus Niños, an orphanage in Tijuana, Mexico, we immediately noticed something different about the operation they ran. There was no emergency, no worry, and no apparent exhaustion of staff and volunteers. Despite the hundreds of kids they care for and the enormity of the daily operation, the vibe was full of joy, rest, and calm.

As our relationship grew along with our understanding of the values they live by, it all began to make sense. Rancho de sus Niños values family. This value is the driving force that offers a genuine love to every broken kid who steps foot on the property. It offers fulfillment and energy to the staff and volunteers who work long, hard hours. It offers hope, provision, and protection because of the understanding that this is God’s family and He will look after and give futures to His kids.

This value of family erases the word orphan. Love and family provide every kid the opportunity for healing from their difficult past and hope for a future filled with victory and relationship. At Rancho de sus Niños, everyone is seen and heard and known and loved. That is why at Rancho de sus Niños, there is no thing as an orphan.

Why do you think story is so important?

Here at Nations we are a family of creatives for a purpose. We are dedicated to honest storytelling.

We believe that story is the only thing you can truly own as a human; our honest story is all we have and it’s all we need. We believe that the greatest story ever told is the story of God choosing to love us and engaging into our story in order to heal us and make us whole. We believe the next best stories are of those who give their life to loving others as modeled by Christ — stories of reformers, martyrs, missionaries, and artists who don't prescribe to a self-serving life but who choose to give their entire life for the sake of Jesus. We believe in the power that these stories have to change the world.

This month, our community project is Restore. What does that word mean to you?

Restoration is God’s heart for his people. We solely work with missionaries and missional organizations that operate with a heart for restoration. 

The subject of our short film, “The Orphanless Orphanage” was delivered from a background of severe hardship, and through a long process of restoration was able to fully become the father figure he has always been called to be. He now works full-time at Rancho de sus Niños, using his gift of worship to lead people into intimate communion with God. His story of restoration is a stunning representation of God’s heart for humanity.

How can people get involved with Nations?

We are humbled and driven by the excellence we see in creation. We invite those with the same passion for advocacy and storytelling to join our family. The creative craft you have been given will only be truly satisfied when used to bring God glory. For more information on how you can get involved, visit nationsfoundation.org/donations.

What is next for you guys?

We are off to tell stories in Uganda, Kenya, Nicaragua, and the Middle East. Stoked!