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Introducing Dr. Ivonn Ellis Wiggan

Dr. Ivonn Ellis Wiggan and Crystal Sprague at My Refuge House Philippines

Sometimes God sends us email.

At least, that’s what the newest member of our team thinks. And I don’t disagree.

We have been searching for a Director of Aftercare Programs to work in the Philippines for over a year. Nicole, our previous director, graciously extended her contract with us until we could find someone, but it is a very important position with a specific skill set. So we kept praying. And waiting. And wondering. (And, if I’m honest– worrying).

But God has shown us often that he is taking care of My Refuge House. And this was no exception.

A few months ago I was talking with Allison, the missions coordinator at our partner church, Mecklenberg Community Church in Charlotte, NC. Allison told me that a member of their church was interested in volunteering and wanted to know if she could send me her resume. She sent over Dr. Ivonn’s resume and I was amazed– she was extremely overqualified. Holding both a Doctorate of Psychology and a Juris Doctorate as well as years of experience working on state and federal children’s mental health policy (for more about Dr. Ivonn’s background go the our “About the Directors” page). Fully expecting to be told “no” I asked Allison “Do you think she would ever be interested in working for us?”

What I didn’t know is that Dr. Ivonn had just received an offer to go back to a job similiar to the work she had been doing, but was wanting a change. She was wanting to be more hands on with clients, to be able to see the impact of her work firsthand.  So she prayed slightly in jest, slightly in desperation. “God, could you just send me an email so I know what to do?”

Dr. Ivonn shaking hands with our recent high school graduates!

Allison email Dr. Ivonn a couple of days later asking if she would ever be interested in working for My Refuge House. And the rest is history. Dr. Ivonn packed up her belongings (including an airbed that fits in her suitcase!) and relocated to Cebu, Philippines in mid-May.

Dr. Ivonn’s positive attitude, faith in God and hard work are exactly what My Refuge House needs right now! As we grow and expand she has already proven she will be able to give the support and leadership our team in Cebu needs to grow to their full capacity.

Please pray for her and the rest of our team in Cebu as they continue in the challenging task of restoring lives.

–Crystal