By April Lynn Newell
As her parents fostered children, Dixie and her mother realized that there was a lack of funds for her foster siblings to participate in sports and other extracurricular activities. Since foster children may only be in a home for a short time, spending money on activities that may last longer than their stay can be difficult for families.
“We’ve been doing foster care since I was in sixth grade,” Dixie said. “I never really expected to do much more than sharing my family with these kids. I just saw foster care as my family’s mission. But in January of ninth grade, I really felt God putting it on my heart to use the situation He’s put me in to do more. I’ve always been someone to have big goals for my life and I saw how I could use that ‘dream big’ message.”
So Dixie set out to form the Plan G organization. Plan G, as explained on their website, stands for Plan God – a plan that surpasses all our human efforts when plans A, B and C fail; a plan only God can make possible.
At plangstore.org you can purchase a t-shirt or a mug, the proceeds of which go towards sponsoring children in foster care so they can play sports, learn to play an instrument or other extracurricular activities that they wouldn’t otherwise be able to do.
Dixie and her family are very familiar with the foster system.
“I live in a foster family as a biological daughter to my parents. I have one older biological brother, and 5 younger adopted siblings-2 boys and 3 girls-so there’s 7 kids total,” she said.
Starting an organization as a young teen had its trials.
“When I was setting up Plan G, I had so many doubts. Like, how am I going to get people to see this? What if I set it all up and no one really takes notice?” Dixie said.
Despite the difficulties and hesitations Dixie and her parents decided to dive right into Plan G.
“I am pretty determined. When I have a vision in mind, I go for it. I’m really bad at taking no for an answer, so when it comes to Plan G, what drives my passion is the fact that, not only does God have big plans for my life, but He has big plans for all of these kid’s lives as well. Plan G is just a little boost along the way,” she said.
God definitely showed up and eased her doubts.
“Well, in the first week, we had 10,000 shares on Facebook, and over 400 orders. That was God kind of telling me ‘See? Told ya.'” Dixie said. “We have been so blessed to be able to help out kids from Oregon to Florida. Some kids have been able to renew sponsorships because they love their sports so much, and others have even gotten to do lessons with their siblings.”
God is still showing up and working in Dixie’s plans for Plan G, in ways she might not have expected.
“We’ve been very blessed these past few months, but traffic to the site has slowed,” she said. “School has started up for me again, so I see this as God giving me the chance to get back in the swing of things so I can focus on academics as well, so just pray for guidance as we jump back in and the church can always highlight the need for adoptive families through foster care. Annually 22,000 kids age out of the system without ever being adopted.”
Dixie’s heart for these children, whom she’s never even met, overflows with love and compassion.
“Kids in foster care are no different than kids like me or my own friends,” Dixie said. “Plan G isn’t a ‘charity’, it’s just a boost for these kids that deserve the chance to dream big just as much as any kid does.”
To get involved and learn more, check out Plan G on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook @planGstore or go visit planGstore.org.