263 - Why faith-based organizations have an important role to play in the 21st century
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Why faith-based organizations have an important role to play in the 21st century

Development and emergency aid, like the society we live in today, is subject to change all the time. Faith-based organizations have been at the center of providing help for decades. Is there still a place for international religious NGOs in the 21st century? Of course! In this blog, we explore the reasons why.


Faith-based organizations have an important role to play in the 21st century

Through a faith-based approach, organizations can develop more profound relationships with communities in developing countries. This is because religion is deeply rooted in many communities around the world. So it makes sense that faith-based organizations play a fundamental role in those communities. Additionally, religion has provided many social services.

Wendy Tyndale is a development scholar at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace and World Affairs at Georgetown University. In her 2003 analysis of a World Bank survey, she found that faith-based organizations have better networks in poor communities than the non-religious ones. She also concluded that religious leaders are more trusted there than any others. ‘Faith-based organizations are thus seen as essential agents both for influencing the opinions and attitudes of their followers and for carrying out development’, she writes.

In a world that seems to forget about the less fortunate more often, religious NGOs continue to have the will to fight for the marginalized. The golden rule of all religions is “Do unto others as you would have them to do unto you.” That vision religious NGO’s continually prove to reflect in the 21st century. Their ability to connect with communities and promote a positive message may be the most efficient way to bring about positive social change. For example, the majority of Latin America has seen many social changes in quick succession. Through faith and theology, oppression and poverty has been combated there. And also in the 21st century, Christianity still has an enormous influence.  Christianity operates with a preferential option for the poor. This view has brought the marginalized to the foreground and continues to do so. Another significant difference between faith-based organizations and their secular counterparts is their ability to attract donors. While secular humanitarian organizations have made great strides in their donor pools and funding resources, they still cannot match the donations that faith-based organizations are able to gather.

Missionary travel is at the very heart of Raptim Humanitarian Travel. We believe our world is a better place when faith-based travelers can go where they are needed most. Contact one of our offices should you require more information about humanitarian travel!