Poverty Cure: From Aid to Enterprise
I am really impressed with the vision of Poverty Cure:
PovertyCure is an international coalition of organizations and individuals committed to entrepreneurial solutions to poverty that challenge the status quo and champion the creative potential of the human person.
This vision, rooted in their biblical understanding of poverty and the true solutions to it, is why I am so excited about their work. They recognize, as they summarize on their website, that the solution to poverty comes from partnerships, not paternalism; enterprise, not (primarily) aid; and empowerment, not dependency.
They have a new six-part DVD series on charity, justice, and human flourishing that fleshes out the core principles of their thinking, and which I am really looking forward to watching. The series is based on this premise: We often ask how we can alleviate poverty. But that’s the wrong question. “The real question is, how do people in the developing world create prosperity for their families and their communities?”
In other words, overcoming poverty is not first about bringing aid, though that matters. The long-term solution to poverty is in the people themselves, and we recognize this when we consider people in light of what the Scriptures have to say. People are innovative, creative, talented, and capable. One of the chief problems in the developing world is that injustice — often through lack of property rights and rule of law — shackles people from being able to create wealth. The best way to serve the global poor is thus to address these roots and help enable people to thus lift themselves out of poverty, rather than to focus on tactics that ultimately create a dependency rather than unleashing people’s innate potential.
I love how they put it in the DVD: “when you recognize that people are made in the image of God with creative capacity, it changes absolutely everything about how we approach charity, missions, and development.”
I hope to watch the full series soon, and will let you know my thoughts when I can.