The story about Evangeline International isn’t so much about me as it is about my grandma. Esther Evangeline Griepp was an amazing woman who was all about “nurturing”- through touch, food, a simple word or an earnest prayer. Her gift was caring for others, which came entirely natural to her. Whether she was filling our tummies with a healthy meal, our minds with the knowledge of right and wrong, or our hearts with love as only a grandma can, caring for us was just what she did. And she had a special tenderness for children. Growing up, I couldn’t sit next to her without her patting my hand or rubbing my arm affectionately — gestures that were always welcomed. She was a lot of things to a lot of people, but to me and my siblings, she was a safe harbor — an unfailing source of love, safety and support.
My grandma passed away two years ago, leaving our family an inheritance. Shortly after, someone suggested that I spend my portion on “something to remember Grandma by”. Brilliant idea, I thought! I’m going to take the love, support and care my grandma gave me and give my inheritance away to affect change for those children who lack, for whatever reason, those basic things they need to thrive in life. These were the gifts my grandma gave me. These are the gifts I will give.
And so I founded Evangeline International: a non-profit organization dedicated to nurturing the potential in all children, especially orphans and those compromised by the effects of extreme poverty; those with no safe harbor to help them along. Our mission is to fill in the gaps so these children can have a renewed chance at success, especially in the simplest of things: experiencing a healthy body that is sustained by ample food and safe water, the gift of knowledge through education and the love and protection of caring adults. Simple things to us, but so often complicated and even unattainable to those living in impoverished nations.
There’s a verse in the bible that says, “…let us not love with word or tongue, but with actions and in truth.”
We strive to provide these practical expressions of love. Plain and simple.
Angi Soulier, Founder