Spearheaded by the Cartersville resident, Orphan Aid, Liberia was established in 2008 through the Cartersville-based nonprofit Medical Missions Unlimited Inc. Built by Orphan Aid, Liberia in 2010, the orphanage complex — two dormitories currently housing 126 youth and a school, which is situated on 10 acres of land purchased by the ministry — are a far cry from the children’s former living situation in Balama. The youths were residing in two mud houses that were open to the elements and sleeping at least three to a single bed fashioned out of wooden pallets and foam.
Through its concert series this summer, Orphan Aid, Liberia is seeking to raise funds to support the nonprofit’s deworming efforts and help kick off its Child Sponsorship Program, which also will assist youths residing in other orphanages located in eight Liberian counties.
To be presented at The Church at The Well, 801 West Ave. in Cartersville, concerts will be held July 5 and Aug. 2.
Tickets to Sounds for Liberia — $10 per person and $25 per family — can be purchased at the door. For more information about Orphan Aid, Liberia, visit www.orphanaidliberia.com or visit the organization’s Facebook page “Orphan Aid, Liberia.”
Name: Daryl Roberts
Occupation (title): Real estate broker
City of residence: Cartersville
Family: Chrissy (wife), Jake (12), Luke (10)
Education: Bachelor of Arts in psychology from University of Georgia, Masters in counseling from State University of West Georgia
When did you form Roberts Realty Group with David Roberts and what led you to this line of work?
A: My brother David and I formed Roberts Realty Group in 2006. I had been in real estate for several years prior to organizing RRG. David and I enjoy working with the public, like selling property, and saw good potential in a career selling real estate and operating our own brokerage.
What do you enjoy most about being a Realtor and can you describe the present housing climate in Bartow County?
A: The current housing market in Bartow County is strong. Interest rates are very favorable and inventory is increasing. I think it is a great time to buy a home. If you are a seller, our market is realizing a steady increase in value so if you are considering selling your home it is a good time to call a Realtor for an analysis. Now may be the time for you to make that move.
When and why did you establish Orphan Aid, Liberia? How has the organization helped the lives of youth in Liberia?
A: We have been working with the orphaned children of Liberia since late 2008. We began our work with a group of 100 children living in the village of Balama. Many of these kids are victims of civil war, many abandoned. They were all hungry and in need of clothing, shelter and medical care. I called my wife and we began immediately coordinating relief. Since 2008, the organization, including many supporters from Bartow County, have provided hundreds of thousands of meals, clothes, new dormitories and [a] school, all solar powered, [and] education, including seven currently attending school at the university level, medical care as needed, vision clinics, deworming of thousands of children every six months and more.
Describe some of your most memorable moments in Liberia and how has your efforts with Orphan Aid, Liberia changed your life?
A: I will never forget being surrounded by these beautiful children for the first time. I knew immediately that God had placed their care in my hands and that my family had just experienced a dramatic growth spurt.
Working with the children and the people of Liberia has changed my life. Being surrounded by people that are truly aching from hunger and living in conditions that most cannot imagine truly opened my eyes and my heart to what holds true value. I have learned that joy does not exist in acquiring things but in loving our God and loving our neighbor no matter how near or far they may be. Love period.
What are your short-term and long-term goals with Orphan Aid, Liberia and how can the public assist?
A: We will continue to operate our orphanage in Balama. We now have 126 children, 18 native staff and over 150 in our school. We will continue to work with them on a daily basis through feeding, educating, clothing, providing medical care, and spiritual guidance. We will continue to deworm and provide school supplies to orphaned children all over eight of 16 counties in Liberia. With help, we can expand that to all 16 counties. We are looking to expand in the area of adoption assistance and would love to assist in the construction of a “foster village” for special needs children.
The opportunities to provide love to more children is limitless. We have just kicked off our new child sponsorship program where for just $20 per month you can sponsor a child and provide deworming and school supplies for that child plus make it possible to expand that effort and do the same for another child. I have seen the dramatic improvement these children make after a couple of deworming treatments. Their little bodies are just stronger and they can fight off illness and disease, such as malaria that could be fatal. Your $20 would be placing deworming tablets in their mouths and school supplies in their hands. Love period. Let’s go.
What is your greatest professional and/or personal achievement?
A: I love the work of Orphan Aid, Liberia. I love to see the children’s improved health and love to hear what they are learning in school. This effort is not, absolutely not, about me but is about children that need our, your, help. Love period. Let’s go.
If you were not in your line of work, what would you like to do?
A: Orphan relief efforts, adoption assistance, lots of travel.
What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
A: Climbed Kilimanjaro last year.