Founder and Executive Director of Hearts In Motion, Karen Scheeringa-Parra, is a woman of faith, of passion for the disadvantaged, and a woman of seemingly unlimited energy. She is the mother of twelve children, eleven of whom were adopted from the Philippines, Korea, Mexico, Guatemala, and the United States. In 1982, while picking up her adopted daughter from Korea, Karen met the director of an organization which specialized in providing needed surgeries for children from all over the world, and immediately became involved as a volunteer in that work. She did so as part of her personal desire to follow Jesus Christ in loving service to others.
By 1986, however, Ms. Scheeringa-Parra realized that the number of children in developing countries needing medical attention required a more aggressive approach. Additionally, she observed that removing small children from their families and homes was traumatic for all involved. In 1990, Ms. Scheeringa-Parra incorporated Hearts In Motion and began taking medical teams to children in need. (501 (c) 3 status was received in 1993.)