In this Together: Finding Solutions to Poverty as a Community | By Chad Hayward

The Bible calls us to work together as the body of Christ for His purposes. This is true for Christians as individuals, but also for Christ-centered organizations. The Accord Network works to unite Christ-centered relief and development organizations to serve the world’s poor.

In order to begin to help these odv3c8PVX3j8BfOhUMaaGryTKB9Y0pSqtycGD16b0zmE,UwaR--g6oRF7Ri7mbB5WWp-wJBAC73aC-k-VFRI9OA0rganizations work together this question has to be addressed: What does holistic, Christ-centered, transformational development look like? The Principles of Excellence in Integral Mission serve as the Accord Network members’ answer to this important question.

Over 160 individuals representing more than 20 countries and countless NGOs had a voice in shaping these principles. It was a lengthy process, but the end product is well worth the effort to collaborate and work together. The principles represent the views of many different individuals and organizations. This gives them much more value than if they were created by a single individual or organization.

These principles endeavor to describe holistic Christian relief and development at its finest. They are meant to be an aspirational framework against which organizations can evaluate themselves. They are quickly becoming the standard by which excellent Christian relief and development is known.

Accord Network believes that the sharing of information facilitates learning among the members of our community. We also believe that collaboration is necessary for each organization to have a maximum impact on ending poverty.  This is why we appreciate the conversation that Poverty Cure shepherds.  Shared ideas—and shared best practices—will help us serve the poor most effectively.

Chad Hayward is the Executive Director of the Accord Network.

How We Wrote a Book Together | By Chad Jordan

ReThink Missions: Real Stories, Real Impact. Maybe you’ve heard of it. It’s a new book that was pre-launched at the Global Leadership Summit. I wrote it on behalf of PovertyCure. It didn’t start out as a book, though.

missions_toolkit_p5_2I was asked to write some content around global missions that could be included in a PovertyCure DVD package. With the help of the PovertyCure team, we asked for input from the global network, we interviewed some of the partners, and we asked some tough questions. The responses were amazing. You had a lot to say.

I run a small international consulting firm and a finance platform for emerging entrepreneurs, both of which have been a part of the PovertyCure Network for a while. When the responses from the network started coming in, I was really encouraged. I was proud to be part of a network willing to engage in a sometimes taboo conversation. You didn’t just talk about what was wrong with short-term missions, but you offered valuable perspectives and solutions. You gave me an extra boost to keep going, and you helped turn this book into something so much more than what was originally planned.

At the end of the gathering phase, it became clear that a little content wouldn’t be sufficient. The vision needed to expand, because the information we’d gathered proved so rich. Laying everything out in front of me, the book began to emerge.

In the book, we get to hear perspectives on global missions from people who have been engaged for decades, and people who are just starting to get involved. We get to hear from people who work domestically, and from those who work only internationally. There are opinions, there are facts, and there are unforgettable stories included in the pages.

There are some hard truths and sobering realities discussed in ReThink Missions: Real Stories, Real Impact, but there’s also a great deal of hope. In working to put the information into a coherent form, it was important to me that you were left with a sense of solution, not just confusion. I highlighted organizations that are doing a good job of combining missional attitudes with intentional action. I highlighted your ideas, your insights, and your opinions surrounding how we can do missions in a way that will produce the greatest good while doing the least harm at a local level.

Hopefully when you read the book, you feel empowered to act, not scared to move. By offering a variety of perspectives in one place, I tried to compile a resource that would inspire continued action as we simultaneously ask and process those tough questions.

As I really went through the submissions from PovertyCure’s global network, I was impressed with the sheer number of responses, but also with the thoughtfulness of each person. Clearly, the conversation around global missions is one you are all eager to have. That’s exciting. It means we’re onto something. It means the time is ripe to dive into the topics we discuss in ReThink Missions: Real Stories, Real Impact.

So to everyone who sent in a response from the global network, to all of PovertyCure’s Action Partners, to each person we interviewed, thank you for engaging. Thank you for agreeing to write a book together.

Chad Jordan is the co-founder & CEO of Arrow Global Capital and author of ReThink Missions: Real Stories, Real Impact.