About Us

Hope Anne Dueck — Executive Director

Hope Anne Dueck

Raised in a plain community and observing multiple cases of child abuse, Hope Anne Dueck has a burning passion to protect children and the vulnerable from abuse.

Having previously helped create and serve on the board of a non-profit in the 1990’s that supported survivors, Hope Anne eventually went on to co-found A Better Way with Wesley Yoder in 2017 to provide education about prevention of abuse, as well as supporting survivors through advocacy in a variety of ways. Hope Anne and her work have been featured numerous times in the media, including the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Associated Press, and the NBC/Peacock docu-series Sins of the Amish.

It would be impossible for her to do the work that she does without the enthusiastic support of her husband, Paul, and their children, and she is always grateful for their love and support.

Board Members

Wesley Yoder — Co-founder

I’m a husband to the most beautiful wife and a father to my favorite son and favorite daughter. I’m a maintenance technician by day, and in my free time, I enjoy wood/metalsmithing, photography, and spending time in nature.

An element of my personal mission statement is that I endeavor to be a force for good in all things. This led me to help found A Better Way. I believe that far too often, the church’s response to abuse has been half-baked at best, and downright damnable at worst. It is my prayer that truth, honor, justice, purity, love, and virtue become the standard rather than the exception.

Verna Kauffman

Verna Kauffman

I’m wife to Brian, who treats me like a princess, and momma to 4 kingdom builders.

In 2019, through a series of crushing dreams, I was invited to attend an event that brought some new perspective to my life. What Is My Purpose? In reflection, I realized I have a heart of empathy for those who have been hurt deeply in life and. I feel very ALIVE when involved in a project bigger then myself.

About the same time, God brought a young lady into my life who had experienced horrific trauma and abuse in her life. I realized quickly that I was NOT equipped with tools to help her. Since then, I have been on a journey to learn and have been absolutely stunned at the arrogance and lack of knowledge or desire to know and understand that abounds within the church. A Better Way has been instrumental in teaching me tools and I’m honored to partner with them.

Joel Horst

Joel Horst

As a young Mennonite boy, I believed my life was quite idyllic. I enjoyed my small church near Washington, DC, and I loved being homeschooled by my mom. I grew up on a small family farm, where I learned many great skills.

In 2011, I began learning that, in my conservative Mennonite and homeschool circles, the rates of sexual abuse were much higher than I’d ever dreamed. I’ve been studying and researching ever since. Part of my journey has included coming to grips with and leaving the spiritual, emotional, and physical abuse in my own life, from multiple sources including church, homeschool teachers, and family. This has fueled my passion to make the church a safe place where people can find love, grace, and healing.

When I’m not fighting abuse, I work as the Lead Driver for a natural food distribution company. I also enjoy singing and playing bass with the worship team at my church, writing and blogging, and spending time with friends.