Methodism had its roots in social activism.
John Wesley, the founder of Methodism, also established
orphanages in the New World in the eighteenth century.
The Baby Fold originated out of the home of Nancy Mason
in 1902. The Mason home was also the birthplace of the
congregation now known as First United Methodist Church
in Normal. The Baby Fold and The United Methodist Church
have been linked throughout The Baby Folds history.
The Baby Fold currently has a covenantal relationship
with the Illinois Great Rivers Annual Conference of
The United Methodist Church that includes over 800 United
Methodist congregations in central and southern Illinois.
The Baby Fold is a member of the United Methodist Association
of Health and Welfare Ministries, a voluntary membership
organization that shares, promotes and strengthens the
Wesleyan values of healing and caring, in cooperation
with connectional units of The United Methodist Church.
The United Methodist Association operates the EAGLE
accreditation program, a quality enhancement program
for faith-based health care and human service organizations.
The Baby Fold holds the EAGLE accreditation.
- The Baby Fold Board of Directors membership is composed
of at least 60% of whom are United Methodist lay and
- The Baby Folds by-laws specify that The Baby
Folds policies and practices must be in harmony
with the beliefs of the United Methodist Church.
- The Baby Fold camp provides opportunities for United
Methodist youth to work alongside The Baby Fold staff
in a summer camp for the children of The Baby Folds
Hammitt School and Residential Treatment Center.
- United Methodist groups have sponsored work projects
to assist with the maintenance of our buildings and
- United Methodist individuals and groups offer their
services through a variety of other volunteer activities.
- United Methodist youth tour The Baby Fold during
United Methodist Youth day to learn about how the
church is at work through the agencies it sponsors.
- The Baby Folds Christian Life Coordinator
speaks in United Methodist churches throughout the
Conference, conducts tours, and provides resources
- United Methodists across Illinois support The Baby
Fold with their prayers, service, and financial gifts.