Rockford Woman Takes Baking To a New Level- To Save Lives!

Long time Rockford resident, Rebecca Cruttenden, is elbow deep in cookie dough, but not just because she likes cookies. She is starting a protein cookie business called Clara Cookies that will donate 100% of the profits to help special needs children get adopted out of orphanages around the world.

Cruttenden is the founder and director of a charity called Team Orphans that has raised over $106,000 for special needs adoption grants in the last four years. She works with seven adoption agencies around the country, including Bethany here in Grand Rapids. From her Rockford home, she directs Team Orphans and now experiments with cookie recipes.

Cruttenden, the mother of three adopted kids, is also an intense athlete, currently training for her fifth Ironman triathlon. She developed three tasty protein cookie recipes for her Ironman training, and now she’s turning it into a business to change lives. Clara Cookies will be launching on May 1 with large, individually wrapped gluten free protein cookies. Each cookie has 300 calories and 14 grams of protein, perfect for serious athletic training or a healthy meal replacement. Cookie lovers can choose from three flavors- peanut butter chocolate chip, coconut dark chocolate chip, and oatmeal raisin. With every cookie purchased, orphans will be given a chance to grow up in a family. Clara, the inspiration for the business, was an orphan who came home to a loving family last year because of the money Cruttenden raised.

Business start-up costs are expensive, about $20,000, so Cruttenden has joined crowd funding through Go Fund Me. In the last two weeks, she has raised over $6,000. Now she needs 1,400 people who will donate just $10 each and Clara Cookies will begin. To donate, go to or check out the Team Orphans facebook page for the link.