Operation Blessing International Relief & Development Corp.

Rating: 3.86 stars   7 reviews

Issues: Food, International

Location: 977 Centerville Tpke Virginia Beach VA 23463 USA

Mission: The mission of Operation Blessing is to demonstrate God''s love by alleviating human need and suffering in the United States and around the world. OBI initiates a variety of strategic national and international programs, partnerships and special projects to relieve human suffering, to provide the basic necessities of life, to educate, and to develop healthy, self-sustaining communities, families and individuals.
Programs: BLESS-A-CHILD All That For Kids: Five days a week, children from kindergarten to eighth grade can attend OBI's All That For Kids learning centers and be mentored in areas such as reading, math, computers, character development, theater/arts, sports, homework assistance and other enrichment activities. Worldwide Care: Through nutritional feeding programs in Africa, educational assistance and academic scholarships in Thailand, China and India, medical care and anti-parasite treatment in Latin America, and orphan training centers in Ukraine, OBI's Bless-A-Child prgrams are working across the globe to transform the lives of thousands of impoverished children.HUNGER RELIEF Hunger in America: With strategically-placed warehouses in Virginia, Florida and California and a fleet of 18 trucks and 65 trailers, the Hunger Strike Force is OBI's largest domestic program, delivering an average of 2 million pounds of food and relief product each week to a vast network of partnering organizations. On average, the HSF supplements more than 75 million meals each year. Feeding Programs: Through soup kitchens in Ukraine and Romania, lunch programs for refugee children in Sudan, nutritional feeding for HIV/AIDS-affected families in South Africa and more, OBI is helping impact the lives of thousands who would otherwise go hungry. Food Security: OBI is providing food security for impoverished communities through the construction of food banks in Niger, garden projects and fish farms in Burkina Faso and Senegal, goat projects in Bulgaria and family farms in South Africa and Latin America.MICROENTERPRISE: OBI is involved in a variety of micro-enterprise projects helping families living in countries including The Phillippines, Guatemala, South Africa and Senegal become financially self-sufficient. DISASTER RELIEFA first responder in times of disaster, OBI worked closely with organizations including the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the U.S. Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA), World Food Programme (WFP) and the United Nations High Commissioner of Refugees (UNHCR) to deliver life-sustaining relief and supplies to victims of disasters.Provides aid to victims of hurricanes, earthquakes, fires, tornadoes, floods, blizzards and man-made disasters -- including food and medical care to Darfur's refugees (2007); emergency relief to those affected by typhoons and floods in the Philippines, Mozambique, Somalia and Indonesia (2006 & 2007)as well as Hurricane Katrina (2005). WELLS & CISTERNS: Operation Blessing is breaking the cycle of water-borne suffering by digging clean water wells(in countries like India, Romania, Ghana and Nigeria)and helping to provide adequate water supplies by building cisterns(China). MEDICAL AIDInternational Medical Missions: From anti-parasite programs in Peru and Guatemala to medical missions in poverty-stricken regions of India, Africa and Indonesia, Operation Blessing offers free medical, dental, optical and surgical services for those who cannot access or afford such health care. Cleft Lip & Palates: Each year, thousands of children are born with disfiguring cleft lips and palates - a deformity that can creat hearing, speech and dental problems. Working with local hospitals and government agencies in places such as China, Indonesia, the Philippines and parts of Africa, Operation Blessing has been able to sponsor thousands of free surgeries for impoverished children. U.S. Medical & Dental: Whether by mobile dental van, weekend medical missions or OBI's medical and dental clinics serving Katrina victims in New Orleans, OBI provides thousands of free medical services each year to those who are uninsured or unable to afford health care in America.

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Community Reviews

Rating: 1 stars  

Based on ratings on Charity Navigator I have been a regular donor to Operation Blessing. Because of accusations raised in Mission Congo and homophobic and other ignorant statements made by
the evangelist I just discovered runs this organization I will not longer contribute.

Was your donation impactful?

Unsure

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

No

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

Operation Blessing is focused on helping people in need with the love of Christ. I have been a donor since 2007, and I know that every donation is able to make an impact. I am amazed at how far they are able to stretch every dollar to reach not only places as remote as mountains in Peru, but also tornado victims here in the U.S.A. Within 24-48 hours of a disaster in the US, they have tractor trailers of supplies arriving to help. At the same time, they are drilling wells all over the world to bring fresh water to people who need it. They have extremely low administrative costs, so I know every dollar I give will go to help people. They do not send me millions of mailings, so I know my donations are not going to printing lots of papers.

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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Review from CharityNavigator
Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

My name is Dan Mitchell. I work at a ministry in Joplin, Missouri that hosted Operation Blessing during their relief efforts in our city. There is not a more faithful, hard working group of people on earth. They keep their word, they have compassion for humanity, they are extremely diligent, they are generous AND they were (as far as I could tell) the first relief organization from outside our city to arrive on scene. I worked among them for over 2 months and I am completely impressed and humbled.

Thank you Jody and Dan for your leadership and sacrifice. You are loved by our community. God's peace to you.

Dan Mitchell

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Operation Blessing led hundreds of volunteers per day for months. They are an amazing ministry.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I wish Operation Blessing was located in Joplin!

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Review from CharityNavigator
Rating: 5 stars  

I work at a church that hosted the Operation Blessing team. A tornado hit our city, Suffolk, VA in 2008. One of our members called Operation Blessing for help and they were here within 2 hours. The team's overwhelming concern for the physical and spiritual welfare of the community was evident from the moment they arrived. Jody and the team are incredibly organized and effective (they can make just about anything happen!) and throurough in their work - they never leave a job unfinished. We formed lasting relationships with the team and if, God forbid, another disaster should happen, OB will be the first phone call we make.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Seeing how they jumped in immediately to help clean up our city after an F4 tornado.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Have them expand the team so they can bless others in need as they blessed us!

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

How did you find this group?

A friend.

What, if any, change in your life has this group encouraged?

I am much more likely to volunteer in other disasters.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008

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Review from CharityNavigator
Rating: 5 stars  

I had the unexpected opportunity (thanks to a providential chance encounter at the Joplin Starbucks :-)) to work alongside CBN's Operation Blessing during three separate relief trips to Joplin, MO this past summer. After two trips I was so impressed with their staff, led by Jody Herrington-Gettys and Dan Moore, that I asked to come down for a third week just to work with them again.

I've worked in the nonprofit sector for many years - and have been involved with other US relief projects - but I can't stop talking (facebooking and twittering :-)) about the OB staff, mission and accomplishments I experienced while volunteering on both debris removal and home rebuild projects.

Although the entire staff seemed to work as one, encouraging and directing volunteers teams engaged in difficult tasks (and very hot temps), Jody's leadership taught me how to be a better leader in my "real" job. She managed her team with strength and grace, gently prodding productive activity (as we were filling the newly-restored homes with furniture mere moments before the scheduled reveals :-)), and engaged volunteers with her "have fun and be safe" philosophy. I also appreciate the attention to detail Jody gave to each of the home rebuilds, seeking to add an extra personal touch to each family's decor based on specifics needs or interests.

Whether it was a difficult debris removal project or an exciting home rebuild reveal, the OB team functioned efficiently and effectively to meet each day's goals. Decisions regarding people, finances, weather and safety were handled with care and wisdom.

I'm hoping life will offer many additional opportunities to work with Jody, Dan and the OB team, and I highly encourage support of their efforts.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Disaster relief, project management, debris removal and home rebuild activities, volunteer coordination, financial decisions, marketing and media engagement.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Find a way to work with them more frequently. :-) Seriously, I was so impressed with the team, the decisions, the mission, etc. after the first two trips that I immediately started looking at when/how I could join up with them again. Now that I've had the opportunity to work with them a third time, I'm hoping for a fourth.

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Review from CharityNavigator
Rating: 5 stars  

I worked with Operation Blessing from the time they arrived in Joplin Mo., my experience with the organizers and volunteers was truly a blessing to me and my family and many of my coworkers. I have lived in Joplin all of my life . Many of the people I work with were affected by the tornado and lost their homes, transportation, and possessions. When a group of hundreds of people give of their time and talents to remove debris ,rebuild homes, rebuild ballparks and replace furnishings for people who did not have means to rebuild or many devasted by lives lost "THANK YOU" isn't enough. My experience with Operation Blessing renewed my faith and the love of many christians from all over the country. God calls on people of all walks of life, some of us can give of our time, some of us of our talents and some of us of our finances God uses all of us who are willing to listen and commit to this calling. Personally I have been involved in Missionary work over the years outside of the US and to be able to help people from my hometown that I had never met, I received a great blessing the gift of giving.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

working closely with organizers and volunteers in Joplin Missouri

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I wouldn't change anything the job of coordinating a large group of people is a daunting task and they were well prepared obviously they had done this before.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

How did this volunteer experience make you feel?

truly blessed

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

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Review from CharityNavigator
Rating: 1 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I worked for 3 days with Operation Blessing in Joplin after the tornado. It is extreemly unorganized and waist volunteers time. They seems to be more interested in publisity and putting on a show and taking pictures than helping and caring for victums. Judy the director has a very bad attitude and ego problem that gets in the way of getting help for people. I have a hard time believing this is a Christian organization. I feel there are some shady things going on with the supplies that our church group donated. I would never donate money or time to this operation ever again.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

The idea sounds good in theory, but in reality the follow through is not there. The videos are misleading when they have us work on Karen's 600,000 house and show a low income neighborhood in the background of the video. She had insurance and loads of money. There were so many others we met that really needed the help.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

The company needs more organization and accountability. I don't believe donations are used wisely to benifit victims

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We’re deeply sorry that you had a negative experience working with our team in Joplin after the horrific tornado struck that area. We can assure you any and all supplies donated by organizations, individuals and church groups went towards helping victims of that terrible disaster. We were blessed to spend two months on the ground helping remove debris, feeding hungry families and helping restore homes. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact me at Rachel.Galloway@ob.org. – Rachel Galloway, Digital Media Manager, Operation Blessing International.

Review from CharityNavigator