Movement employee embarks on year-long mission trip - Movement Mortgage Blog

Searching for the right career brought this former middle school teacher to Movement. Now she’s leaving to continue the quest as she travels to 11 countries in 11 months.

Sara Graham, a Movement processor, is leaving her life, house and job behind for nearly a year to go on an extensive mission trip with The World Race.

“Serving is the best expression of your faith and I love to travel,” says Graham, who works in Movement’s National Sales Support Center in Fort Mill, S.C. “The timing was perfect.”

The World Race is open to anyone age 22 to 35. Now 30, Graham plans to leave on her birthday in August. She will cross the globe from El Salvador to Nicaragua to Nepal to the Philippines and more.

“I admire Sara and her heart to serve people,” says Jad Hernandez, her team lead. “The whole team is excited for her and to live vicariously through her.”

Movement processor Sara Graham will leave her job for nearly a year to travel to 11 different countries as part of a missions expedition. Photo by Noah Turley.

Before Movement, Graham taught art to middle schoolers.

“I felt like I was a good teacher but it was not the best way for me to use my gifts,” she says.

She was accepted to Movement University, a five-week class that introduces students — recent college graduates, military veterans and seasoned professionals looking for a fresh start in a new industry — to Movement’s culture and values, and employs them once they’re done.

Although she’s enjoyed her year at Movement and made friends here, she always wanted to go on an international mission trip. She heard about The World Race through friends and social media.

She realized it’s now or never and now is perfect: she’s single, doesn’t have kids and she works for a company that emphasizes the importance of serving others.

“I’m really impressed with Movement and they’re giving me the OK to go,” she says. “I’ve had a conversation with them and they said that I would be welcome back when I return if there is an opening.”

The door is open, Jad says, but he’s not sure she’ll want use it after her life-changing year.

“We are here for a reason and sometimes it is just for a season,” says Jad, who recently praised Sara during an all-staff company meeting to show his support and encouragement.

We are known as a company that sends people. I’m impressed with the Movement mission and grant support and response that I got.” – Sara Graham

Between now and departure, Sara is raising the $20,000 needed to go on the trip. Jad and her team are ready to help.

“One of the reasons I love it here is we have a culture where everyone is supportive of each other’s passions,” says Jad, who has been with Movement for five years.

She’s raised almost $3,000, and has faith she’ll get what she needs. Jenni Wirt, a Movement underwriting manager, told her, “If God has called you to go, you’re going to go.”

Sara (center) with members of her team: (from left) Katherine Reinken, team lead Jad Hernandez, Debbie Bazen and team lead Jason Johnson.

She’s also getting a grant from the Movement Foundation, which provides $500 to any Movement team member going on a mission trip.

“We are known as a company that sends people,” she says. “I’m impressed with the Movement mission and grant support and response that I got.”

Raising the money is the known challenge. Taking off for a year presents more challenges.

She’ll have to take enough clothing for almost a year but not so much that she can’t carry it all in one backpack. Although most of the countries have similarly tropical weather, the coldest will be Nepal and she expects to be there in February.

Added to that, she’s not sure what she’ll be doing in each country. She may work with existing ministries in the countries or in orphanages. She may have to do physical labor or work with victims of sex trafficking.

As she gets ready to go, she’s reading blogs from other World Racers and using the resources the company provides. She’s focused on today and dismisses how she came to make the decision that will no doubt monumentally shift her life.

“It just came to a point that I thought ‘why not?’” she says.

Follow her story at SaraGraham.theworldrace.org.

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About the Author:

Liz Foster

Liz Foster is the lead communications coordinator at Movement Mortgage and contributing author to the Movement Blog. The Converse-wearing, “Star Wars”-loving former journalist spends her days updating Movement’s intranet and sending out too many emails to team members who don’t read them. When not at work, Liz can be found serving at her church, ferrying her two boys, Benjamin and Luke, to various sporting events or attempting a new yoga pose.