ROGERSVILLE, Tenn. (WJHL) – Isaiah 117 a group that cares for children awaiting foster placement is expanding, with a goal of opening a home for Hawkins-Hancock counties within a year or two.

When the home is built, every single county in Northeast Tennessee will have an Isaiah House. It’s people like 17-year-old Arizona Henderson, a Rogersville resident, it will impact. 

“I’ve never really had love shown to me firsthand which ended up causing me a lot of trauma and a lot of hard times,” Henderson said.

That’s when the Isaiah House came into Henderson’s life and she hasn’t looked back.

Founder and Executive Director Ronda Paulson said plans for this particular home have been in the works for quite a while.

“We actually met with a judge the week the world shut down,” Paulson said. “We were so excited we were going to get this off the ground in 2020, and obviously it wasn’t the time. But I do believe this is the time.”

They hope to build the home in a year or two and bring it as quickly as possible to kids in need.

“About a year ago we had roughly 90 kids that were in foster placement so that would give them the opportunity.” Alison Osborne, Expansion Coordinator for Isaiah117 said. “Currently they would have to go to Greene county, or Sullivan County, or one of the other houses in the area.”

Organizers said they won’t be able to make it happen without prayers and support from the community, which they have faith they will receive.

“We have seen it’s the small, rural communities, where they literally just band together and say not our children, not anymore, and we watch it take off,” Paulson said.

Over the coming months, the organization plans to spread awareness of the project to the community and tell people how they can get involved so they can help kids like Henderson.

“I have been in more homes than I can count on both my hands, and the Isaiah House, it’s a home that’s what every kid wants,” Henderson said. “It makes them have hope that you can have a home like this if you just hold on.”