Getting Better at Doing Good |
There’s a lot being written and said these days about the effectiveness of charitable work. The wonderful and provocative 90-minute documentary by PovertyCure called, “Poverty, Inc.” makes a compelling case that fighting poverty has become a multibillion dollar business and it’s not helping the poor. The titles of some of my favorite reads like “Toxic Charity,” “When Helping Hurts” and “Dead Aid” give us a glimpse, in their titles alone, of where our thinking has gone. I’m right there with these folks, I think we need to get better at doing good and that’s not to say we haven’t…and aren’t doing a lot of good in the world through our current charitable work. It’s just that, we can do better.
It shouldn’t surprise us to find ourselves questioning the effectiveness of our charitable work both through church missions and secular philanthropy. That’s a good place to be! Think about it… How many times during our lives have we thought we were doing the absolutely right thing in the right way only to discover later it probably wasn’t the right thing or at least not the best thing? That’s life and we get to get better or else we become obsolete.
In a nutshell, that’s what Significant Matters does. We help the church get better at doing good. A primary way we do that is through the stories of individuals, churches and faith-based ministries around the country and world who are doing good in better ways. For our way of thinking that means helping people and communities in ways that honor their individual dignity and helps them help themselves. We need the stories of pioneers working with new models as a way to help us picture what could be.
We were in Mozambique recently with a small group to see one of those stories up close. Former Hershey exec, Don Larson, founded The Sunshine Nut Co. in Maputo, Mozambique on the belief that a value driven business – where dignity, love, and community come together with excellence could provide lasting social, economic and even spiritual change in some of the poorest countries around the world. You can hear his story in the video below. And if you want to see what we saw and experienced on the trip you can follow the group on Facebook – Sunshine Nut Co Mission Trip