Reflections on 14 years as a CCFC staff member
Linda Crichton shares her passion for helping children on the eve of retirement
By Christina Beeston, marketing and communications coordinator
Working for a non-governmental agency, it’s not hard to find devoted employees, but there are special ones who go the extra mile. Meet Linda Crichton. She joined Christian Children’s Fund of Canada (CCFC) 14 years ago as the voice of the organization at reception. Before long, she moved deeper into the heart of the company, championing child advocacy through her role as a sponsor services associate, processing photos and correspondence. Most recently, she helped a boy in Ethiopia receive an operation. We sat down just before Crichton’s retirement to reflect on her long-time commitment to CCFC, the children and international development.
CCFC: Why did you want to work for CCFC?
Linda Crichton: I wanted to give back to the community, and it seemed like the perfect opportunity — it was a gift from God.
CCFC: What did you learn about yourself and about international development through CCFC?
LC: I’ve been a mother for many years, but I didn’t realize I could care for so many children I never actually knew. I see their photos, I read their biographies … and I feel protective. I want to help them, I want their sponsors to help them, and I want the world to protect them. I’m very glad we have policies in place — not just our organization — and we understand the importance of protecting children.
CCFC: You have a passion for protecting children, especially young mothers. Why?
LC: When I first started here, girls who became pregnant were shifted out of the (sponsorship) program — not because of any policy but because that was what the [local communities we serve in our countries of operation preferred]. They didn’t want to include young women who were ‘not a good example.’ But now they are recognizing these are people and, yes, they are mothers, but they are still children themselves. We have an obligation to help them and to make sure [these young moms] grow into independent women who have an education, so they can support their children and the cycle of poverty is not carried on. It’s a cycle we’re breaking, which is an amazing feat.
CCFC: What’s your favourite memory of your time at CCFC?
LC: An acknowledgement from a sponsor we received. His sponsored child had gotten married and given birth but is still in the program because she is a minor. He had so generously offered to give them additional funds every month to help with food, and his first gift was entitled ‘a baby bonus.’ This was so heartwarming.
CCFC: What would you like your legacy to be?
LC: I don’t think of myself as having a legacy. I play a very small part in a wonderful organization that enters a needy community and hopefully leaves it better prepared to sustain itself. CCFC has a legacy, and I hope I have contributed a small part to the best of my ability.… [My hope is for CCFC] to continue to work on our girls and see what we can do for them. Let’s see if we can get them all into the program, all moving in the right direction. That’s my passion.