“I could give more… I want to give where it will make a real difference!”
Simple statement of fact, lament, or cry of frustration, this statement is an expression of our God-breathed desire to give, to make a difference: we have been built, redeemed, and blessed to do so. This desire reflects the truth that God intends for us to make a difference; and so with this desire comes a concern for giving effectively.
Roadblocks to Effective Giving
Many of us find ourselves stymied by the question, “Can my gifts really make any lasting difference?” During the course of our research, we’ve found that many would-be givers share three very legitimate concerns about the effectiveness of giving to help those living in extreme poverty. The following articles examine these three concerns in depth and provide biblically grounded solutions for addressing them.
Tackling Goliath addresses the sense of futility that stems from the overwhelming size and scope of the fight against extreme poverty.
Helping Well illuminates research-based alternatives to common and well-intended but ultimately wasteful and ineffective approaches to poverty alleviation.
Donor-Directed Giving describes a win-win solution to the “dilution dilemma” faced by those wishing to give through their churches to make a difference for the world’s least and last.
Resources for Effective Giving
The good news is that clearing these roadblocks frees us to give joyfully and generously, with the confidence that our gifts do indeed make a lasting, even transformational, difference.
What remains is to choose high-impact organizations to support with your gifts. We recommend three particular resources for guidance in selecting organizations working in the extreme poverty arena.
The article Trends in Effective Giving suggests using program effectiveness, as opposed to financial ratings and ratios, as the top priority in choosing an organization.
The article Helping Well suggests criteria, or best practices in transformational development, for determining if an organization’s programs are truly effective.
The tab Top Organizations presents a handpicked list of exemplary parachurch organizations known for effectiveness in bringing sustainable change to those living in extreme poverty.
Are you ready to make a difference?