Over the past several weeks, we’ve introduced you to the new Feed the Children. We’ve told you that our future lies with the children. The young without limits. The spirited who dream big. The hopeful who envision a better world, a world where no child goes to bed hungry.
We’ve told you that to end childhood hunger, we need to empower children, unite forces, and attack the problem from all angles and that it takes all of us in the fight: donors, experts, organizations, communities and leaders.
But we haven’t yet told you more about values. At Feed the Children, these values motivate us:
Challenge convention: we believe that a future without hungry children is possible.
Defend dignity: we believe in treating each child and family in the communities where we work with value and worth.
Champion partnership: we believe collaboration is the only way to end childhood hunger.
Value every donor: we believe in donors playing an active role in ending childhood hunger.
Drive accountability: we believe in making changes when something isn’t working and building on the success when it is.
When some look at this list they may ask, “What happened to the word ‘Christian?’ Wasn’t ‘Christian’ one of your values before? Are you no longer a Christian organization?”
To answer these questions, we need to tell you bit more of our story.
In 1979, a group of Christian leaders sensed a calling to care for, protect, and feed children in need around the world. They read the exhortations of Jesus as recorded in Matthew 25 to feed “the hungry” and give water “to the thirsty” and provide “clothes” to those without.
In response, these Christians knew they needed to act. How could they not? Collectively, they began raising support and organizing leaders toward this cause, eventually founding the organization called Feed the Children in their hometown of Oklahoma City.
For over 35 years, Feed the Children has served thousands of communities all over the world and in the United States motivated by this same fact—Jesus teaches all of us to look after the most vulnerable citizens of this world.
And we’ve done so without discrimination. We’ve fed children with Christian parents. We’ve given water to children in Muslim nations. We’ve helped children learn in the slums of Central America. We’ve given children permission to dream big for their future in America’s inner cities.
We’ve done so because it is the right thing to do. How can you see a hungry kid and turn away? Jesus couldn’t. And many of our employees have joined our team out of their own faith calling. They work tirelessly on behalf of the children not only because they believe in the mission that no child go to bed hungry but because it is what Jesus said to do.
This is our faith story: Feed the Children is a show, not tell, organization.
The great saint of the church, Francis of Assisi once said, “Preach the gospel at all times, if necessary use words.”
This is why you no longer see the word “Christian” in our values statement. We believe we don’t need it.
In fact, we believe all of our value statements reflect who Jesus was and what he taught:
Didn’t Jesus challenge convention when he overthrew the money tables in the temple courts?
Didn’t Jesus defend dignity when he pushed the unlikely to the front of the line: the women, the children, and the sick?
Didn’t Jesus champion partnership when he chose 12 followers to journey alongside him for his teaching ministry on earth?
Didn’t Jesus value every donor when he taught the 5,000+ gathered on the mount and then fed them a plentiful meal too?
Didn’t Jesus drive accountability when he challenged the popular teachers of the day who were more interested making a dollar than they were caring for souls?
For these reasons and many more, our team is proud of our brand values. To live into a mission that loves, protects and defends kids is a worthy and exciting calling.
We believe the world needs more Christians who put feet to their faith and act on what they believe. Or as James 1:22 tells us, “Do not merely listen to the Word of God, but do what it says.”
This is most what we want you to know: Feed the Children is motivated by Jesus’ teachings every day. But you won’t find us congratulating ourselves from the mountaintops. With every child we feed, with every parent and caregiver of children we empower, with every community we engage with hope, we seek to BE Christ’s hands and feet in the world.