Crossroads NOLA was birthed out of a plea for more foster families in Greater New Orleans.
In the spring of 2011, the Department of Children and Family Services pulled a meeting together of area church leaders and the ask was simple – we need families to care for the 4000+ kids in foster care in Louisiana and we think local churches can help. This meeting was the launching point for the creation of a First Baptist New Orleans’ ministry dedicated to recruiting and supporting foster families.
During this time, Baptist Crossroads, a local nonprofit started by First Baptist New Orleans to address the need of affordable housing in New Orleans, was in a period of transition. From 2006 to 2012, Baptist Crossroads Foundation completed over 80 homes in the Upper Ninth Ward in partnership with Habitat for Humanity. With this partnership coming to a close, the board of Baptist Crossroads looked to Anna Palmer, then Minister of Missions at First Baptist New Orleans, to revision the foundation. The result of that process was a new name, Crossroads NOLA, and a shift in mission from affordable housing to foster care in 2013.
Crossroads NOLA now focuses on the improvement of child well-being through the continued growth and development of a faith-based foster care network that maximizes collaboration between local churches, government agencies, and other child-welfare stakeholders. Through elevated recruitment efforts in the faith community and elevated systems of support for both new and current foster families, Crossroads NOLA is increasing the number of suitable foster parents and improving the outcomes of local children who spend time in foster care.