Ready to take the next step in your foster care adventure?
Call Us at 1.855.512.4453

People like you are changing children’s lives by opening their homes and their hearts.

We have foster care offices throughout the state with expert and compassionate staff members who are ready to help you take the next steps to being a foster parent.

Take the Next Steps

Become a Foster Parent

For every book bought, another is gifted to a child in foster care. When you open your heart and your home to children who have endured trauma, you make it possible for them to hope and dream again. We have requirements prospective foster parents must meet, and to become licensed, individuals must go through 5-7 training classes, pass a background test and have their home inspected. Our staff provides ongoing support and encouragement for those who are sharing the love of Christ in this powerful and life-changing way.

Apply to Live in a Foster Family Home

In addition to the option to care for foster children in your own home, we have opportunities around the state for licensed foster parents to live rent-free in homes maintained by One More Child. Through our innovative Foster Family Home model sibling groups get to stay together in these multi-room, fully furnished homes and individuals who do not currently have the space or accommodations to care for several foster children have all they need to succeed.

Start a Foster Crew

For those who aren’t ready to become licensed foster parents, we still need your help!

We need Super Sitters, Household Helpers, Meal Makers, Prayer Partners and more to support and encourage foster parents and foster children!

Those roles make up our Foster Crews – a creative and resourceful way for you and your church to wraparound those families with love.

We train you, we provide you information and online tools to manage your Crew, and we provide ongoing support to help you connect the skills and gifts of people in your church with the needs of local foster families.

Start giving foster families the support they need by starting a Foster Crew at your church today. Contact us at networks@onemorechild.org for more information.

More Than

16,000

children in Florida are removed from their homes each year due to abandonment, abuse and neglect. They need loving and stable homes. By becoming a foster parent, you can help bring children from lives of crisis to lives of belonging and love. Contact us to start your foster care adventure today, where you’ll learn first-hand the impact of caring for one more child.

Meet our passionate and empowering leaders.

Jerry T. Haag, Ph.D., CFP®

President/CEO

Dr. Jerry Haag is the president/CEO of One More Child. During his tenure as president, he has guided the expansion of ministry sites from nine locations in Florida to more than 50 locations around the globe. Under his presidency, One More Child has launched its Anti-Trafficking, Child Hunger, Single Moms, Family Support (prevention) and Global programs to meet immediate and long-term needs of children and families. Under Dr. Haag’s leadership, One More Child has increased from serving 3,351 children and individuals in 2007 to more than 324,000 in 2020.

Dr. Haag earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in finance from Baylor University and earned a Ph.D. in finance and real estate in 1995 from the University of Texas at Arlington. He has led and participated in humanitarian aid, emergency relief, childcare and ministry to children and families in countries around the world.

Having been appointed and reappointed since 2013 by both Gov. Charlie Crist and Gov. Rick Scott, Dr. Haag serves on the Florida Faith-based and Community-based Advisory Council which he currently chairs. He also serves on the board of directors of the Christian Alliance for Orphans (CAFO), where he has chaired its Faith and Foster Care Research Team and served on the President’s Advisory Council. In addition, Dr. Haag has served on the board for Hines Ugandan Ministry since 2018.

Because of Dr. Haag’s experience and leadership in launching global, prevention, and anti-trafficking programs, he has been invited on numerous occasions to share our organization’s expertise with national and world leaders – to include the United States Health and Human Services, the White House, the President’s Office of the Dominican Republic (in coordination with President Danilo Medina) and the Office of the First Lady of Guatemala (in coordination with First Lady Patricia Marroquin de Morales).

Dr. Haag is passionate about long-term policy change to impact vulnerable children, and he had the pleasure of participating in a distinguished seminar on Religion and U.S. Foreign Policy, sponsored by the Institute on Culture, Religion and World Affairs at Boston University.

He preaches regularly in churches throughout the nation, and he and his wife, Christi, also enjoy speaking together. Additionally, he has authored, presented and published academic articles relating to his business expertise and has been honored several times for his business, professional and civic achievements.

In 2018, Dr. Haag was awarded the 2018 George W. Truett Distinguished Service Award by the Baylor Line Foundation and was honored at its Hall of Fame Gala for his exceptional leadership in meeting the needs of children around the world.

Dr. Haag has served on the faculty and administration of both public and private universities, and he was named Baylor University’s Vice President for University Development in 2011, where he served before returning as president of One More Child.

From 2000-2007, Dr. Haag served as president and CEO of the South Texas Children’s Home in Beeville. He also has corporate work experience with AT&T and is a Certified Financial Planner.

Dr. Haag and Christi live in Lakeland, FL. Christi is a well-known speaker and the host of One More Child’s Hope is Here.  Their eldest son, Ben, lives and works in Dallas, TX and their youngest son, Brady, resides and works in Austin, TX.

Do you need a brief bio for Dr. Haag for an upcoming speaking or preaching engagement he is participating in? We have you covered — find it here.
Contact Jerry

Phone: 863.687.8811

Pam Whitaker, Ed.D., LMHC, CCTP

Vice President of Programs

In 1999, Dr. Whitaker joined One More Child (OMC) as the Director of Campus Ministries and later served as the Central Florida Administrator. She is currently the Vice President of Programs where she oversees the various program operations throughout the agency, ensuring excellence in the delivery of services to children, families, volunteers and other community partners. Prior to her work at OMC, Dr. Whitaker worked at Peace River Center for 11 years serving as a therapist/coordinator for children and adolescents in the residential psychiatric services center. She has worked with children and families in crisis for over 30 years.

Dr. Whitaker has received a Bachelor’s of Science (B.S.) in Social Work from Florida Southern College, earned a Master’s of Arts (M.A.) in Counseling Education from the University of South Florida and holds a Doctorate in Education (Ed.D.) from Nova Southeastern University, majoring in Organizational Leadership with a minor in Conflict Resolution.

Dr. Whitaker has been a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC)since 1997 and is a Qualified Supervisor for counselors seeking licensure. She is also a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional (CCTP) and holds professional certification in Human Trafficking Prevention and Intervention from Florida State University.

Active in her church, Kathleen Baptist, Dr. Whitaker currently serves on the Personnel Committee, is a Care Group Leader, substitute Life Group teacher and nursery worker.  Married to Gary Whitaker since 1986, they have an adult daughter, Tierney.

Dr. Whitaker is passionate about bringing creative, Christ-centered services to children and families in need and reaching the “least of these.”

Contact Pam

Phone: 863.687.8811

Melissa Poole

Executive Director of Foster Care Ministries

Melissa Poole serves as the Executive Director of Foster Care Ministries for One More Child (OMC). She has worked with OMC for more than 16 years, previously serving as the North Florida Administrator and the Director of Community Ministries.

Melissa has been a Certified Behavior Analyst in the state of Florida since 1993 and has also been a Licensed Mental Health Counselor in the state of Florida since 1995. She is also a qualified supervisor for counselors seeking licensure. Melissa has nearly 30 years experience working with children, youth and families in crisis and has received specialized training in trauma-informed care as well as infant mental health.

Melissa is a member of Chets Creek Church and volunteers in the preschool ministry. She has been married to Ray Poole since 1991 and has a daughter and stepson, Hannah and Blake, along with two grandsons and one granddaughter, Addison, Colton and Kennedy.

Contact Melissa

Phone: 904.721.2711

Become a Foster Parent

Read through our guidelines for becoming foster parents

Lead a Foster Family Home

Learn more about our alternative housing arrangements

Donate Funds

Donate now to make a difference in the life of a child

Are you ready to be a foster parent?

MORE WAYS TO GIVE:

Donate Now

Estate & Planned

Legacy Fund

OR

Food & Supplies

Corporate Matching

Contact Our Team