Cultivating Partnerships/Better Together
In partnership development, we stop, look and listen before we speak or act. At our very core, we believe that the people in any community are best served when local leaders are encouraged, equipped and empowered. Strong relationships are at the heart of our strategy. So we believe in taking the time to develop close, mutual relationships of love, trust, honor and respect and then develop strategies from there. We intentionally seek to come alongside local leaders to serve and empower them to fulfill their God given visions.
As you can see, we are different because we do not believe in a Western model of partnership development that tends to be driven and controlled by Western leaders, and their education, positions, power, agenda and money. In contrast, we believe in a servant style of leadership that reflects a grassroots, boots on the ground, bottom up, decentralized leadership where we work alongside local leaders. We seek to identify the best local leaders we can find.
“And it is still true, no matter how old you are-when you go out into the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands, and stick together.” ~Robert Fulgham
The Home field Advantage
These local leaders have the “home field” advantage over foreign missionaries in so many ways. They speak the local language, understand the culture and customs, like the food, and are aware of the unique health challenges that each area faces. In the long run, I believe we accomplish so much more when we invest our time, efforts and money in nationals or local leaders. They certainly do not need the extra expenses that go with being a foreigner: passports and visas, overseas flights, the expense of an international move, setting up a home, the cost and length of language school, international medical issues, the concern of a quality education for their kids, and the even the cost of evacuation.