A World of Christ-centered Communities Overflowing with Hope.
Providing help to the broken and poor is deeply ingrained within many of us. This motivation to help others, has resulted in trillions of dollars being poured into disenfranchised communities around the world. However, a distressing reality has become clear in the last several years: much of this aid has been ineffective and even counter-productive. Many researchers make the argument that the communities, countries, and even continents that have received the most aid, may have suffered more in the long run than they would have without outside intervention. How is this possible? How has our motivation to “help” actually “hurt” those we intended to serve? Because all too often, our generosity creates a dependency that destroys personal initiative and self-sufficiency.
This reality has leading us to thoughtfully consider how we engage the local community in everything that we do. This process is often described as “community transformation”, as opposed to more traditional “relief-only” approaches. The process does not eliminate relief work, but places it in its proper place: a short-term fix to immediate needs. The focus of community transformation, however, is ongoing and long term. It is relationship based and the community members are actively engaged in every aspect of development. Our goal is long-term growth and improvement through these relationships. These relationships alongside with the gospel of Jesus promotes a rippled affect from house to house to transform the individuals and families.
This transformational approach creates an environment where those being served, actually begin to believe in themselves and their worth. They begin to hope again. The expectation is that change occurs alongside their rich and traditional culture. In this way, we assist the individual and community in identifying their pre-existing strengths, in order to be what they were uniquely created to be. We believe that the lack of physical water affects everything in a community from basic health and sanitation to education and employment. Thus, the presence of water for drinking, hygiene, and economic development is foundational to building healthy communities. It is a basic human need, and a basic human right. Meeting the physical need for water opens doors for people to receive what they thirst for most, living water.
Jacob’s Well Missions, a non-profit, helps families and communities thrive in resource challenged regions of the world though an integrated approach of spiritual, social and economic development.