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Core Values

In any organization, certain pillars help hold the entire building together. These core values of ELI help guide the decisions and make-up of who ELI is and how we serve together with you to IGNITE WORLD CHANGERS which makes a life-changing difference in our world.

National Leadership
LOCAL PEOPLE best address local problems. When you partner with ELI you empower a community of people made up of a dynamic team of full-time nationals and Americans who have chosen to work together for the cause of sharing God’s love and Igniting World Changers among the poor. The people and leaders who were born into the African context and live in the communities know the strengths, weaknesses, and potential of their people the best. ELI aims to develop and empower people to grow in leadership so that they can promote grassroots change in their communities and influence higher powers to recognize and embrace where God wants to bring about holistic change.

Both the organization and those being touched by its ministry are blessed by the hand of God (Genesis 12:2,3). The church and people of the West have much to learn from the people of Africa. ELI is striving towards a cooperative attitude through all interactions and projects.

The projects and programs of ELI, in contrast to handouts, do not provide quick or easy solutions but aim for results that are lasting and transferable. This method of development requires patience and perseverance in times of decision and development. With a high regard for the individual and their ability to influence others, our combined efforts utilize a variety of learning opportunities with an emphasis on ideas that can be demonstrated, adopted locally, and transferred to others.

This holistic work addresses the spiritual, physical, social, and emotional sufferings people face which are uniquely intertwined together. The ministry and supporters aim to make a lasting difference in Africa by addressing and inviting transformation that impacts the whole person and the family that they belong to.

The spiritual condition of all people affects all areas of life. People are living their best and most purposeful life in relationship with God through Christ. ELI staff and programs include a focus on prayer, seeking God’s leading through the Holy Spirit, and meaningful partnership with church bodies both in Africa and the USA. Programs and trainings are at their best when they help people recognize their importance in the eyes of God and equip them for higher levels of worship of God and service to others.

Incarnational Ministry
Impoverished communities are inspired to grow best by people and leaders who practice selflessness rather than control, and humility over self-centered pride. We all need to be aware of how our material possessions or lifestyle preferences can hinder or distract us from the purpose and people we aim to serve.  It is ELI’s aim that the ideas and technologies we demonstrate be appropriate to the culture, environment and available resources in Africa so that the learning gained can be effectively passed on from one person to another. The best approach can be found when we enter and serve in all situations and locations with humility and genuine care – reflecting the love and attitude of Christ (Philippians 2). 

Transformational Thinking
Guiding others to: have a deeper faith in Christ, greater love for people, live out Kingdom-minded stewardship, and embrace an ever-growing passion to spread the news of God’s transforming love is foundational to this work. Though ELI has been founded and rooted in the United States, there is a great opportunity to be challenged in our thinking and grow to see through the life lens of another culture and person. This can happen through a genuine encounter and relationship with the African people and church.

What we believe:

  • We believe that the Bible is God’s infallible Word, written by men who were divinely and uniquely inspired, and that it is our supreme authority in all matters of faith and practice.
  • We believe that there is one God, eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son and the Holy Spirit.
  • We believe in God the Father, Creator of heaven and earth, perfect in holiness, infinite in wisdom and measureless in power.
  • We rejoice that he concerns himself mercifully in the affairs of men, that he hears and answers prayer, and that he saves from sin and death all those who come to him through Jesus Christ.
  • We believe in the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, God’s only begotten Son, born of a virgin, sinless in his life, who atoned for the sins of the world by his death on the cross.
  • We believe in his bodily resurrection, his ascension into heaven and his return to the world in power and glory according to his promise.
  • We believe in the present ministry of the Holy Spirit, by whose indwelling the Christian is enabled to live a godly life.
  • We believe everyone is a sinner by nature and by choice, but that “God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
  • We believe in the supreme authority of the Scriptures, the competency of the individual in direct approach to God, the symbolic ordinances of believers’ baptism and the Lord’s Supper, and a worldwide program of missionary endeavor in obedience to the final commands of our Lord (Matthew 28:19-20, Acts 1:8-9).

Guiding Principles

To empower the poor with knowledge, confidence and measurable growth that impacts their spiritual and economic life so that they become an example that others will be drawn to imitate and surpass.

The impact of the program multiplies as the learners become the teachers. Our staff are passionate people primarily from the countries where we serve who feel a life calling to empower those who are suffering. Nationals form the core of the knowledge base and lead the charge of instruction and care to their own people. Nationals navigate cultural issues with greater ease and effectiveness. Together, we have developed strategic avenues and styles where dynamic, practical training reaches the hearts, hands and homes of those who need it the most.

Because the causes of poverty vary, our approach adjusts to the need and opportunity. Whether the training takes place at one of our five training centers or through our dynamic and always expanding field farmer strategy, our approach remains the same and key principals apply:

Depend on God

Care about all people

Reach the greatest amount of people in the least amount of time, requiring the least amount of resources, with the greatest amount of measurable results

Avoid handouts: Giving things to people can be not only ineffective, but actually detrimental for many reasons

Promote sustainability

Relate and teach with passion

Be relevant, reliable and responsible

Celebrate small successes

Promise low, deliver high

Motivate by results, not by promises

Make heroes out of the people, not ourselves

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