Everyday Hero: Man’s mission to support orphans and vulnerable children

By Bill Murphy, Everyday hero
Last Updated: Monday, August 28, 2017, 6:13 AM EDT

Much of Mike Clark’s time is spent either with his kids in the Dominican Republic or working for them.

It began after a trip with his church to that Caribbean nation.

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“I just saw some things that I could never un-see. Saw children… many, many children in need and a child advocacy system that was… just very deficient,” Clark said.

And so he began the Advocates of Love Foundation, an orphan care ministry for orphan and vulnerable children in Samana Province.

“In 2013… just received a call that I was going to spend my life’s work on this island helping to rescue orphan, vulnerable kids,” Clark said.

Taking on a project of this scope came with words of caution from many.

“My pastor probably had the kindest words,” Clark remembered.  “He said I think you have more faith than sense.”

But history was made about four years ago with the completion of a children’s home.  And now a school.

“We were the very first orphanage and help to any children in the entire province of Samana,” Clark said.  “And to date, four years later, we’re still the only help to these children.”

The nonprofit foundation holds many fund raisers.

While one of the best ways people get involved is with the child sponsorship program which allows them to exchange letters and pictures and be in touch with the child.

For Clark it’s all about the children and not being called a hero.

“I don’t view myself that way. I did it for the awareness. For the children,” Clark said.