About Us

Empowered to Connect (ETC) is an attachment rich community focused program that exists to support, resource, and educate caregivers.

ETC’s resources and trainings are especially helpful for caregivers of children who have experienced adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), toxic stress, and maltreatment. We fundamentally believe that every human being has great capacity to grow and overcome adversity when cared for in supportive, connected, and nurturing environments.

We rely heavily on the model of Trust Based Relational Intervention (TBRI®) created by Dr. Karyn Purvis and Dr. David Cross at the TCU Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development.


Empowered To Connect (ETC) has a long and fruitful history of serving children and families. ETC was started in Irving Texas as a part of Tapestry Ministries of Irving Bible Church by Michael and Amy Monroe with the support of Dr. Karyn Purvis.

In 2010, the Monroes co-authored a study guide companion to The Connected Child with Dr. Purvis. Over 50,000 print copies of Created To Connect: A Christian’s Guide to The Connected Child have been distributed, and it is widely used by churches ministries and support groups to help educate and encourage parents. In collaboration with Dr. Purvis, Michael and Amy went on to write two Empowered To Connect parent training courses, based on the Trust Based Relational Intervention (TBRI) model.

The ETC Prepare Course is designed to educate families who are in the process of adopting or hosting their first foster placement. The ETC Connect Course equips caregivers and parents along their journey with insight and practical strategies to build strong healing connections as a family. There are now over 200 Empowered to Connect Trainers supporting and teaching courses around the world.

In 2009, Show Hope and the Karyn Purvis Institute of Child Development held the first Empowered To Connect conference. In the years since, the conference has been held 19 times, simulcast to thousands of locations and reached countless caregivers and professionals with a message of hope undergirded with truth and compassion.

In 2018, the ownership and program rights of ETC were transferred to the care of the Memphis Family Connection Center (MFCC), a holistic family care clinic based on the principles of TBRI. MFCC co-founders Mark and Tona Ottinger have been ETC parent trainers since 2010 and are deeply invested in ETC and supporting its continued growth for years to come.