Love Fosters Hope Announces Next Executive Director
MAGNOLIA, TX – The board of Love Fosters Hope has selected Catherine Schultz as its next Executive Director. Schultz will succeed founder, Cindy Mericle, who is retiring at the end of August, after nearly 10 years leading the non-profit organization.
Love Fosters Hope is a Texas-based non-profit organization with many facets, but one purpose: to impact the lives of children and teens in foster care who have been abused, neglected, or abandoned.
The new director comes with a wealth of experience and a heart for this population of kids. Schultz joins Love Foster Hope with nearly 20 years of non-profit and community engagement leadership experience. Her background includes 18 years with the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, serving as the Managing Director of Sports and Event Presentations where she led thousands of volunteers committed to empowering the youth of Texas.
Schultz shares, “It is an incredible blessing and privilege to join this outstanding organization. I am honored for the opportunity to join this amazing team, as we continue to grow and focus on bringing hope and healing to our most vulnerable youth!”
Schultz holds a BS degree in Agricultural Leadership and Development from Texas A&M. She and her husband, Jack, have four children and reside in Waller. The Schultz family attend and are members of Champion Cowboy Church in Hockley.
Cindy Mericle, founder of Love Fosters Hope, will be joining her husband in retirement but is excited to continue volunteering with Love Fosters Hope. Mericle and her husband, James, live in The Woodlands and have 3 adult children (1 of whom is adopted).
Mericle’s journey began 21 years ago when she attended her first Royal Family Kids Camp in the Houston area. Thirty-two beautiful, sweet, funny, and hurting children in foster care attended that first camp. Mericle stated, “These children captured my heart and my future was forever radically altered. Little did I know I would launch a non-profit organization in 2012 dedicated to bringing hope and healing to traumatized kids who longed to be heard, seen, and loved. My life has been abundantly enriched by these precious children and teens. What an amazing journey!”
What started as one camp for children in foster care has grown to serving children and teens, ages 7 to 19 years old, at life-changing summer camps uniquely designed to bring hope and healing. In 2011, Love Fosters Hope launched the mentoring program for teens. In 2018, they opened a Transitional Living Home for older teens and young adults who aged out of care and otherwise would be homeless. Over the last 21 years, Love Fosters Hope has impacted the lives of 4,169 children and teens.
Thousands of amazing, caring, and encouraging volunteers from diverse backgrounds have joined Love Fosters Hope to demonstrate God’s unconditional love through the various programs.
The Love Fosters Hope programs include:
- Summer camps for children and teens in foster care, ages 7 to 19 years old
- Mentoring Program for teens in foster care
- Residential Treatment Center outreach for teens
- Ongoing assistance for teens and young adults who have aged out of foster care
- Transitional Living Home that helps young adults, who have aged out of foster care, become independent and successful
Love Fosters Hope would not be successful if it were not for the support and dedication of donors, local businesses, church partners, volunteers, and amazing staff: Mallory Duggan, Julia Jerabek, Yvonne Johnson, Brandy Williams, and Sue Williams.
Mericle is grateful for the relationships she has built with Child Protective Services, CASA, Angel Reach, Hope’s Bridge and additional local community partners. She values their collaboration and knows that together they have brought fun events that have created many positive memories along with raising awareness in the community of the struggles these vulnerable children face. Together, these organizations host child abuse awareness events, Christmas and back-to-school parties, Easter egg hunts, high school graduations and more.
Mericle shared, “The Board and I are thrilled to have Catherine lead Love Fosters Hope. We are excited about serving more children and teens for another 20 years, or more.”
Learn more about Love Fosters Hope at lovefostershope.org.