Stronger

Stronger

As 2022 comes to a close, we hope you’ll take a minute to see the impact of families who have been made STRONGER this past year because of your service, your giving, and your prayers.

Man Up and Go is making a special push between now and June 30, 2023, to see all of our constituents— the foster families and foster children we serve, the young men aging out of foster care we disciple, and the biological fathers we support— made STRONGER over the next 18 months. ​​​

As you look at their pictures and read their stories, our prayer is that you will consider a special year end gift to help us all see STRONGER communities as we fight for the fatherless together in 2023!​​​​

“THANK YOU! Thank you! Thank you! This group of guys cranked out our new play set and trampoline in 5 hours this morning! We are beyond grateful! It was a great morning with a wonderful group of guys and young men!” 

“Thanks so much for the wonderful event at Keystone Ranch! All our kids loved it, and our foster son asked all the way home when the next one would be…can we go every time, “there will be another one and we can go again,” etc… Never have seen him this excited to go back somewhere!”

“Omgosh. That Christmas gift was a literal blessing. Thank you so much! We are blown away by the kindness everyone has showed us and the love and support we feel. Please tell everyone thank you from the bottom of our hearts!
This is really going to help with added expenses this newest case is bringing with it.
I hope you all have a Merry Christmas!”

“My family would like to send a huge thank you!!! We attended our first Man Up event as a foster family and the memories made were endless.  A huge goal was met by our 9 yr old foster, B. He loves ducks and has always wanted to hold one and was so excited that his dream came true.  Thank you for everything you do.  A lot of these sweet kids miss out on so much that people take for granted.  Organizations like yours allow us foster parents to give them those moments that make them only focus on being a kid, that is huge!!!!! I have some amazing pictures of our kiddos holding the duck and chickens I would love to share with your volunteers so they can see the joy in their eyes.  Lastly, it was our now 3yr olds actual birthday and he felt like it was all “his party”!We appreciate you all so much!”

Thank you again for making your year-end gift to help us fighting for the fatherless – as always, we are praying God’s richest blessings upon you and your family this Christmas season.​​​

Remember, the best is yet to come! ​

Jeff Ford, CEO

Football Fling 2022!

Football Fling 2022!

At Man Up And Go’s 6th Annual Football Fling, we raised well over the $100,000 goal we had set. (By comparison, the most we had raised at this event in the past was $47,000.) I encourage you to watch this video and check out all the fun we had! (Click the photo below to watch video.)

Not only did we have a record-setting night of giving, a long-time Champion gave an additional $100,000 one-time gift to help propel the organization forward in a unique way. The Lord is opening up doors of opportunity right now and your giving is enabling us to walk through them. 


Why do I mention this? What is the significance, especially if you live in areas where Man Up has yet to launch a local Cohort?

Because right now in the state of Florida, state and local government agencies in charge of child welfare are recognizing what Man Up has been trumpeting for the last 10 years, that fatherlessness negatively impacts a child’s ability to thrive. They passed groundbreaking legislation this year to the tune of 70 million dollars to start addressing it.

Regardless of where you live, the awakening happening within the Florida legislature represents an awakening that is happening across the country. We have an opportunity to bring God’s view on masculinity into environments that are otherwise unavailable to us. Moreover, your giving enables us to provide specific programming that state dollars won’t.

Because of your giving, we have been able to partner with the State to see:
2236 individual support services provided to foster families resulting in 100% retention rate over the last 12 months
– Over 1600 hours volunteered by Man Up 100 Cohort members
– Over 800 hours spent mentoring aged-out foster male youth, resulting in a 75% increase in stable housing, a 73% increase in employment/school, and a 92% decrease in police/criminal interactions

By God’s grace, He has also positioned us to pilot a mentoring initiative for biological fathers to help them safely reunify with their children.

What God is allowing Man Up and Go to build in Florida can be replicated all over the United States– Cohorts of godly men fighting side by side for foster children, foster families, male youth aging out of care, and biological fathers who just need a little support. 

Together, we are breaking the chains of generational fatherlessness. We truly believe the best is yet to come, and we can’t thank you enough for walking with us in this journey!

Regards,

Jeff Ford, CEO

Adoption Post!

Congratulations to the Rodriguezes!

Foster families have a very special role to play in the lives of the children in care. They are committed to providing a safe home for children whose biological families are working through a case plan aimed at reunifying with their children. When reunification isn’t possible, adoption becomes a viable option for the family that has been caring for these children’s needs. The Rodriguez family has been actively fostering four of the eight children in their home for over three years (we share this with their permission).

Both fostering and adoption reflect the Gospel in such unique ways. The Gospel simply means “The Good News.” Fostering reminds us that God has called us to be vessels of reconciliation and restoration – this is really Good News! When you foster, you provide a family the opportunity to have a second chance at creating a safe environment for their children.When this isn’t possible, adoption gives us a peak into the amazing gospel story. In the same way that God takes us in as His children and gives us His inheritance, this family has looked at these four children and taken them in as their own and made them a part of the Rodriguez Family!

This is why Man Up and Go exists. We believe that children are precious to God and especially fatherless children. God often refers to His care for the fatherless and so should we. Our Man Up 100 program is dedicated to serving families like the Rodriguezes, who are sacrificially caring for children that need a loving home. If you would like to join us in supporting more families like this, please Click Here.

-The Man Up Team

A Car for a Foster Family.

Everyone can do something!

Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone – especially to those in the family of faith.

Galatians 6:10

A few weeks ago, our ministry friends at One More Child reached out to the Man Up and Go team about a foster family they serve.  The family was in search of a car for their foster daughter, so they asked if we knew anyone looking to sell or donate a vehicle.  The family’s daughter had worked diligently over the last several months and saved up her own money to make this special purchase.  Our team was glad to be on the lookout! 

Little did we know we would not have to look far!  When a fellow Man Up and Go team member heard of the need she knew exactly how she could help.  In God’s providence, she was working on getting a Ford Mustang prepared to sell.  Instead of listing it online, she offered it up to the family.  Man Up and Go matched the young girl’s savings, the family pitched in, and it was just enough for her to purchase her own car!

God calls all His followers to do what we can with what He has given us – whenever we have the opportunity. Our team member was in the right place at the right time, responded to God’s call, and was used by God to fulfill a need in this young lady’s life.  

What is one way you can do good today? 

You may not be able to buy someone a car, but you may be able to fulfill a need in a creative way!  Be on the lookout.  Do what you can!

What does the Bible say about this role and relationship? God is clear about His requirements, men are to love, protect, disciple, and provide for their families. He holds men to a high standard due to the importance of their role in the home – and how it can impact an entire community. God holds fathers accountable for how they lead (or fail to lead) their family. Ultimately, a father’s job is to be a reflection of our Heavenly Father. He is to model grace, mercy, justice, joy, and care so that when we look at him, we see the grace of God, the mercy of God, the justice of God, the joy of God, and the care of God.​​​​

As we read through God’s Word, we see time and time again God display His heart for the fatherless. With no father figure to reflect the heart of a Heavenly Father – some believe the tragic lie that God Himself is absent or lacks compassion.  As followers of Christ, we know this isn’t true.  In fact, we know the Lord has a special place in His heart for the fatherless.  May this motivate our Man Up and Go family to continue forward with this message – God is here, God cares, and there is place for the fatherless in the family of God.

-The Man Up Team

Why Does Fatherhood Matter?

Why Does Fatherhood Matter?

What is fatherhood? Is it merely being a male that shares responsibility for creating a child? Or is it deeper than biology? ​

If you do a quick search on the definition of “father”, Google will tell you the term refers to the relationship between a man and his child. But what defines that relationship?  What is a father’s role in that relationship? And how does this relationship impact children and society as a whole?

Statistics have time and time again shown us that there is a direct correlation between absent fathers and increased rates of behavioral disorders, poverty, abuse, poor educational performance, and more. While the reasoning for this is complex, when fathers (or father figures) are not present, children can face tremendous uphill battles in life.  Conversely, when a dad is present, children have the ability to flourish. 

What does the Bible say about this role and relationship? God is clear about His requirements, men are to love, protect, disciple, and provide for their families. He holds men to a high standard due to the importance of their role in the home – and how it can impact an entire community. God holds fathers accountable for how they lead (or fail to lead) their family. Ultimately, a father’s job is to be a reflection of our Heavenly Father. He is to model grace, mercy, justice, joy, and care so that when we look at him, we see the grace of God, the mercy of God, the justice of God, the joy of God, and the care of God.​​​​

As we read through God’s Word, we see time and time again God display His heart for the fatherless. With no father figure to reflect the heart of a Heavenly Father – some believe the tragic lie that God Himself is absent or lacks compassion.  As followers of Christ, we know this isn’t true.  In fact, we know the Lord has a special place in His heart for the fatherless.  May this motivate our Man Up and Go family to continue forward with this message – God is here, God cares, and there is place for the fatherless in the family of God.

-The Man Up Team

Celebrating the Life of a True Servant Leader.

One of the greatest calls for a man is to be a servant leader. We see this throughout the Scriptures, and we see it perfectly displayed in the life of Christ. Why is this such an important role for us to play? Because we are commanded to walk like Christ! To seek first the Kingdom of God, to put others ahead of ourselves, knowing that the last shall be first.

Men have a responsibility to lead in our communities. Not just to lead though — to lead by example. To serve those in need and to meet people where they are.

One of the best examples we know of servant leadership in action is this man, Rick Sadorf.​​

Rick began serving with Man Up and Go several years ago – setting up Christmas lights for single foster moms, doing landscaping projects, and cooking and delivering meals with his amazing wife Barb. An attorney and CPA by day, Rick put on his Jesus cape by night, advocating for the fatherless whenever he could.

Recently (and suddenly) Rick went home to be with the Lord. As surprising as it was, it gave us the opportunity to rename our “Man of the Year Award” to the “Rick Sadorf Award” – which was presented to Barb last week.​

We need more men like Rick Sadorf in the world, and this is where we’re calling on you . . . be a mentor, serve a meal, sponsor a fatherless child, go on a trip . . . all these are ways you can “Man Up” by lowering yourself to serve those in need.​

For more information on mentoringclick HERE.

For more information on serving foster familiesclick HERE.

For more information on sponsoring a childclick HERE.

For more information on Impact Tripsclick HERE.

-The Man Up Team

Come Join the fight for the Fatherless!

Every year our Man Up 100 cohorts host their New Term Launch where we gather together to fellowship, share wins, share new serve opportunities, and enroll more men who are looking to join the fight!​​

If you are looking to get involved with Man Up 100 this is the gathering that you cannot miss. You will be more informed on our local system of care and the roll that you can play in supporting the foster/adoptive families in our AAF program.

Here are the links for the launches:

– The Man Up Team

MAN UP RAGBRAI 2022

MAN UP RAGBRAI 2022

RABGRAI 2022 is another one for the books!  Every year Man Up sends out a team of avid bike riders to represent our mission to fight for the fatherless. Here is what one of our RAGBRAI veterans had to say about this year’s trip:

“One thing that struck me this year is the friendships that we have built on RAGBRAI. We caught up with Anita about her grandkids and Steve about his sons and their PB & J business. We talked a lot with our Air Force buddies and on and on. After riding this event 9 times, I now feel like I am going home every summer to meet up with my old friends for a week. That’s pretty special.”

Here is a quick run down from one of our trip leaders:

Small but strong team.

I ran over kyson at 23 mph, possibly fracturing a rib or two but he rode all 464 miles.

Jimmy literally couldn’t walk through towns because of his back but finished every mile.

Jeff and juicy pulled whoever needed it throughout the week. 

Jimmy, kyson and I all rode our first century ride on Wednesday at 103 miles.

The Air Force team is awesome and they love us.

The RV only sustained minor damage when my dad and I had a disagreement.  It was repaired before we returned it. 

Juicy kept our bikes rolling (even after having to do some roadside repairs after kyson and I crashed). 

We have a lot of friends that we see every year on the ride. 

Food was great.

We witnessed the finest pro wrestling that Olwein, IA has to offer.  One of the wrestlers chased kyson after he called the guy fat.  

PB peddlers owner (Steve) loves your emails and supports us.  Gave us free water all week. 

Weather couldn’t have been any better.  Cool and tailwind every day.

My dad gave his very first devo. 

Iowa is awesome.

-The Man Up Team

2021 FALL FOOTBALL FLING

Thank you for being a part of the Fall Football Fling!

We want to start off by saying that none of this is possible without Jesus. God has called us to be a light, to stand for justice, and to love the orphan and widow. Man Up is dedicated to this call. We are glad and thankful that you are also dedicated to this call with us!

We had an incredible turn out of over 170 individuals which made up 90 families. (Not including online attendees) You helped us raise over $66,000.00!!! This is the most we have ever raised at our Fall Football Fling and the first time that every square from the Big Board was taken.