Team Position: Team Leader
Scheduled Travels Include: Unbound Student Life: Zimbabwe
Home State: California (although I can’t seem to settle down in any one state lately…)
Family Facts: I have five amazing siblings – three sisters and two brothers (adopted internationally from Ethiopia). We get in a lot of scrapes, but we get each other out of them, too. 😉
Favorite Country: Actually, I don’t think I can pick a favorite! I’ve found that while cultures differ across borders, love doesn’t. I’ve seen love “lived out” in North America, South America, Europe, and Africa, and countries in all of them have a little bit of my heart.
Strangest food I’ve ever eaten: Boiled squid tentacles. Can’t say it was a favorite…
I never travel without… my journal. Even if I have to give up clothes to do it. Capturing moments on a page is worth a lot to me. 🙂
Me in 12 Words or Less: Loved. Sister. Friend. Musician. Dreamer. Storyteller. Maker-of-projects. Adventurer.
Hi! My name is Victoria. I’ve filled out a LOT of “About Me” sections over the years, and somehow they always get me thinking. How do you answer, “Who am I”?
It’s a simple question. Very simple, and very, very deep. And – I’ve learned – worth asking.
It’s been quite a journey for me to learn who I am in Christ… but I wouldn’t trade any of it. As a millennial first generation homeschool grad, college grad, and graduate student, I’ve spent a lot of time in and out of the classroom – but it’s definitely what I’ve learned from life that has been the most valuable. I’m the oldest of six kids in an adoptive military family, and those experiences have given me a unique perspective on strength and family amidst the ups and downs of life. I’m passionate about equipping young adults to recognize their potential, to form a Biblical sense of identity, and to know God and make Him known in daily life.
And on the side… I’m also a girl with a passion for dark chocolate and skiing and sunsets. For chilling at coffee shops and competing on horseback. For adoption and adventure and the way that God can create one family from multiple countries and continents.
And if we get the chance to hang out sometime, we’ll settle down in a coffee shop (or in a foreign country) and trade tales. 🙂 We’ll share what we’ve learned on this crazy journey called life. How God’s worked in the expected and unexpected. And how our lives are both stories worth the telling, adventures worth the living, and journeys worth everything we can give to them.
Hope to see you on a mission trip!
Victoria's Perspective on International Ministry:
Ironically, my first mission trip came about as the result of a misunderstanding and an innocent question. Growing up, I had a lot of uncertainty about short-term mission trips and their effectiveness as compared to long-term missions. And when an opportunity came up to go to Ecuador in 2017, I cautiously entertained the idea of going – but that was the end of it. That is, until I was contacted by a team member who excitedly told me, “Hey! I heard you’re going to Ecuador – awesome! Have you filled out the application yet?”
And… when I realized that I had no reason to say no… that I had the time and flexibility… and that God had put this trip on my heart, I sighed, pulled up the website, and signed up. And told the team member, “YES, I’m going and I filled out the application!”
And just like that… I was off to Ecuador, and God astonished me with His work, not only in our team and the kids we served, but also in my life too. Global Encounters partners effectively with local churches to support and expand existing ministries, and their team and translators were a delight to work with. When another opportunity came up in 2019, I took a leap of faith and signed up again – and once more, God astonished me with His miraculous provision of the funds and His work during the trip.
Almost exactly three years after my first reluctant mission trip, we’ll be heading to Zimbabwe to bring some hands-on love to the lives of these amazing kids. And I cannot wait to see how God works in them – and in our team – and yes, in my life too.
Here’s to another adventure – because our God is in the business of surpassing even our wildest expectations in ways we never thought possible.