Loren Carriere, Executive Director

Watch a video about Loren

Loren has been a part of the Hope for Opelousas family since 2008, and considers HFO to be his joy and calling. He enjoys the many varying roles of Executive Director, which include leading and encouraging the staff, pouring into the lives of the students, and sharing about the good work HFO is doing.

Loren believes deeply that the real change for our students’ lives will only come from knowing God, “whose love is the thing we search for in so many places but we will only find in His arms. Sharing and living this good news is the only song my life can sing!”

Loren is a self-proclaimed optimist, and his passion and fervor for life is evident in all that he does. Outside of HFO, Loren can be found spending quality time with his wife, Tory, and their three young children, Ivy, Autumn and Loren Jr. A graduate of the University of Louisiana, Loren’s interests bounce from hiking and canoeing to meeting new people, and enjoying great coffee. Right now his weekends are also filled with fixing up a fantastic old house, soon to be called “home.”

Loren’s very own Hope for Opelousas, in his own words:

“Love, joy, hope and success. I want to see our young men take responsibility for their own success and become husbands, fathers and mentors of other young men. I want our ladies to know their value, reach their potential and pass on their passion to the next generation.”

 

Kristina Anderson, Administrative Director

Kristina serves as Administrative Director, and has been on the Hope for Opelousas team since 2010. In addition to working with high school students during tutoring hours, Kristina handles the administrative side of ministry, managing finances and general operations of Hope for Opelousas. She also plans and handles the logistics of the students’ adventure programs.

One of Kristina’s favorite parts of her job is getting to take the students to do and see things they have never seen before and spend time with them as they persist through the adversity that they face on the trail. Kristina has always enjoyed working with kids, and takes great joy in watching them succeed.

 A native of Sioux City, Iowa, Kristina earned a Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Northwestern College(IA) and a Master’s degree in Higher Education from Geneva College. She then went on to work as a Resident Director at Bryan College for three years. After many short term mission trips with Bryan College to work with HFO, Kristina moved to Opelousas full time in 2010. Now in her 7th year living and working in Louisiana, she has come to know Opelousas as home.  When she is not working you can find her traveling, crocheting, spending time with friends, or watching the Green Bay Packers.  

Kristina’s very own Hope for Opelousas, in her own words:

“My hope is that our kids would come to know themselves as God's children. That is primary. I would also love to see them have a true love of learning and to seek to be challenged and grow in all areas of their lives.”

Jamie Jeltema, Program Director

In 2012, Jamie came to Opelousas from Minnesota for a year-long internship with HFO, and has been here ever since. After seeing the impact she could make on the children and the Opelousas community, Jamie decided to stay! While we know Jamie misses her parents, siblings and nieces and nephews up North, we are so glad she answered her call to be a part of the Hope for Opelousas family.

Jamie holds several degrees, but the one that led her here is a Bachelor's degree in Christian Education/Youth Ministry from Northwestern College in Iowa.

A typical day during the school year for Jamie includes observing and supporting teachers and students, finding materials for students to use during tutoring times, and supporting the Agents of Hope program and the tutors who work in the Junior High House.

Jamie’s very own Hope for Opelousas, in her own words:

“My wish for the kids of Hope for Opelousas is that they do not let life's obstacles get in the way of their dreams. I hope that they can see their potential and work hard for what they want. I hope that they feel Christ's love and that they in turn, show that same love to those around them.”

Jonathan Fisher, Elementary Director

Jonathan serves as the Elementary Director for Hope for Opelousas. After admiring HFO and its work as a member of the Opelousas community, Jonathan was excited to join the team in 2013.

Jonathan is a ULL graduate and an avid outdoorsman. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his wife Kait and their son Bennett.

In his role as Elementary Director, Jonathan ensures that HFO is as effective as possible in impacting the lives of elementary-aged children. From ensuring the facilities are in tip top shape, to keeping a watchful eye on each student’s progress, Jonathan makes it his mission to help children reach their fullest potential in life.

Jonathan’s very own Hope for Opelousas, in his own words:

“I wish to help them believe that they have a future. I want them to realize that they can become someone, that they can become a doctor, lawyer, police officer, or whoever they choose to be. They need to realize that while it won't be easy, it will be worth it!”

Emanuel Woods, High School Director

Emanuel hails from Rome, Georgia, and became the Hope for Opelousas High School Director in 2014. He believes his life is a testimony of the HFO mission statement, “Love changes everything,” and has dedicated his life to serving and relating to teens with a similar background to his own. We are so glad Emanuel answered God’s call to “be a light in dark places,” and to make disciples through sharing God’s love.

 As High School Director, Emanuel oversees and plans tutoring sessions, events and bible studies, while keeping a pulse on each student’s progress. In his free time, Emanuel enjoys spending time with his wife, Nasia (our Grace Hope intern!), staying active and studying God’s word. 


Nasia Woods, Grace Corps Intern

Nasia hails all the way from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and joined the Hope for Opelousas team in 2014. She wears many hats as our Grace Corps intern, from working with the Agents of Hope, ensuring the Elementary House has everything it needs, to hanging with the kids and even tackling the occasional graphic design project.

For as long as she can remember, Nasia has had a passion for serving others. She’ll tell you herself that she’s “just a young lady who loves Jesus and loves the kids she works with, hoping to be a mentor and have fun all at the same time.”

Nasia holds a Bachelor’s degree in Communications Media from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, but her minor in Theater may be the best representation of her fun-loving personality. Fun fact: Nasia is married to Mr. Emanuel, our High School Director!

 Nasia’s very own Hope for Opelousas, in her own words:

“That they will embrace the fact that they CAN be more than another statistic, and that they challenge themselves to do just that.”

Andree Gonsoulin, Development Director