Spotlight on COTN Staff

06/15/08

After a longtime relationship with Children of the Nations founders Chris and Debbie Clark, Debbie Moutier went on a Venture Team to Malawi in 2001. She has a vivid memory of spending time there with mothers and children and seeing their gratitude and joy despite living in poor conditions. “The kids were thankful for anything— a smile, a picture, a hug. It gave me a big perspective shift,” she said.

Two years later, Debbie had the opportunity to join the COTN staff at the headquarters in Silverdale, Washington as the Sponsorship Coordinator for the Dominican Republic. In her position, Debbie oversees sponsor/child correspondence, receives and processes information for creating child profiles, and maintains financial records for over 700 children.

Sponsorship is more than just Debbie’s job—she personally knows the joy of sponsoring a child. During her trip to Malawi, Debbie began sponsoring four-year-old Daphless. “When I began sponsoring Daphless she was the same age as one of my own daughters. It’s been a special joy to stay connected with her through the years, visualizing her growing and maturing just like my own daughter,” says Debbie.

This year, Debbie has taken on the added responsibility of being the Country Liaison for the Dominican Republic. In this role, she helps facilitate communication to and from the country regarding ministry updates and needs. Working with the national staff in the Dominican Republic, Debbie helps coordinate the scheduling of Venture Teams, shipments, and other activities. Her conversational Spanish skills have helped her greatly.

Debbie visits the Dominican Republic every spring and looks forward to making a new friend each time she goes. “One of the greatest joys I have experienced is when I met a girl named Luisa on my first trip to the Dominican Republic in 2003,” says Debbie. “I recognized her from her sponsorship photo where she had a cast on her arm. When I saw her I called her by her name and said ‘Hola!’ She was shocked that a total stranger knew her name and has been my fast friend ever since. Now each time I go to the DR, Luisa finds me and makes sure to say ‘Hola!’ and fill me in on her life.”

During the past five years, Debbie has witnessed how God has grown the ministry of COTN in the Dominican Republic—from 64 children to 762 children! She also sees God working in her life through her relationships with coworkers.

“Many people say that COTN is a family. This past year, my family has been in a bit of a crisis and my COTN family has been the Hand of the Lord in my life and the lives of my daughters. I have been loved and cared for in more ways than I could have ever imagined possible by this body of believers! This is so much more than a job or even a ministry to me. The people I work with here are the extension of God’s grace and mercy to me.”