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World Vision International

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Christianity, Economic Development, International, International Economic Development, International Relief, Microfinance, Religion

Mission: World Vision is an international partnership of Christians whose mission is to follow our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ in working with the poor and oppressed to promote human transformation, seek justice and bear witness to the good news of the Kingdom of God.

Programs: Every year, World Vision and its partners serve tens of millions of people in nearly 100 countries, including over one million people in the United States. World Vision's assistance extends to all people, regardless of religious beliefs, gender, race or ethnic background.

World Vision provides emergency relief efforts to bring assistance to victims of both war and natural disasters. Depending on the situation, aid may include food, clothing, and shelter to health care, potable water, and construction of sanitation facilities. Additional projects deal with reducing barriers to progress through improvements to agricultural and nutrition practices, micro enterprise loans, and initiation of literacy, vocational training, and other educational programs. In addition, World Vision is working in Africa, Asia and The Caribbean to help address the needs of widows and orphans in response to the AIDS pandemic through its Hope Initiative.

Adapting to the individual needs of the areas where it works, World Vision coordinates programs for its sponsored children that - along core services, such as medical and dental care, supplemental food and vitamins, and grants and scholarships for school fees and other educational expenses are designed over many years to help make families and communities self-sustaining. According to World Vision, the total number of children being sponsored by U.S. donors is over 700,000.

In the United States, World Vision teams with churches, community organizations, and other volunteer groups. Projects target issues in such areas as tutoring youth, mentoring youth-at-risk, affordable housing, job training and placement, and small business development. Food commodities, medicines, clothing, and other gift-in-kind items (received from governmental sources and private donors) are distributed both through World Vision run projects and ministries affiliated with other organizations. Outside partner ministries receiving gifts from World Vision share similar ideals as overall guiding principles. To educate Americans about the needs of the poor, World Vision produces magazines and other broadcast and print resources, and annually organizes the 30 Hour Famine program for youth to increase their understanding of life in developing countries.

Community Stories

55 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

18

Donor

Rating: 5

I have seen WV's work first hand in Uganda & Rwanda. The holistic economic development model they are implementing in their area development programs is incredible. The people they employ are 95% in country employees which I find to be superior to other organizations because they aren't sending westerners to these countries. I have also sponsored many children over the years through their sponsorship programs. It's not perfect and none of them are, but when you look at scale and impact of your money, $1 becomes more like $5 because they can influence local governments and make large scale change because they go into communities for 15+years at a time. Working on poverty is difficult, and if the Clinton Global Initiative and The Gates Foundation and Tom's Shoes is working with WV, I think they must be doing a darn good job.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

I support this organization because of their great service to humanity. And because such a high percentage of my money goes directly to programs for the needy. Through World Vision, I've been able to supply food, water, medicine, mosquito nets, and farm animals to people in Africa, increasing the quality of life there.

Previous Stories
1

Donor

Rating: 5

I thoroughly enjoy the relationship I have with my child I support in Africa. When I get the mailings with the activity book to sign and send to him, I get to right a nice note to him and his family. I receive pictures and notes from them periodically. It's great.

My gifts have helped fund a well for good water, animals, food, medicine, school supplies, clothing and much more for a greatly improved community.

We have SO MUCH in my country that we take for granted. Over there, clean water is a luxury. It does my heart good to help.

This is an organization that is lean on the management side, and every dollar I give is used very wisely. A very impressive percentage goes directly to the benefit of the people I aim to help.

Review from Guidestar

2

Donor

Rating: 5

My husband and I sponsor two kids through World Vision: a 12-year-old girl in Ethiopia and an 11-year-old boy in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. It’s such an amazing experience to be able to reach out and touch a young life on other side of the world. World Vision's project work to improve entire communities through the sponsorship of children – to attack poverty and to provide better living conditions and resources for all nearby – truly makes a lasting impact for current and future generations in these impoverished countries. A few times a year we receive letters from our sponsored kids, and at the end of each year we get a detailed update about them and the project in their community. The letters and the updates often come with pictures drawn by the kids, and we receive the letters written in their original language as well as translated copies. I find it incredible that the World Vision field workers can reach so personally into the lives of each sponsored child, while the charity as a whole is able to maintain such wonderful organizational transparency and excellent program money usage. We want to sponsor a third child soon!

6

Donor

Rating: 5

My first experience with WV was in 1976. After a 2 year commitment to the Peace Corps in Nepal, I was visiting Bangladesh and saw the work of WV. A severe famine had forced many people into Dhaka to search for food. WV was providing food and shelter but also a means to make a living for folks with no land. (In a subsistence level farming society, a family with no land has no way to support themselves.) WV provided sewing machines, a silk worm farm, small fishing boats and nets to assist these people in making a living. I have been a sponsor ever since and provided extra funds for one of the children to go to a technical school for an associates degree in agricultre. Having experienced the waste and inefficiencies of government programs, WV is a model of good stewardship in my book!

Review from CharityNavigator

Donor

Rating: 5

I like what World Vision is doing to help those in need. I think they are being good stewards of the money that is being given them. I don't completely agree with their policy of not hiring those who don't share the same faith because WV accepts money from people of different faiths/beliefs and those people are working with WV to help those in need too. Seems contradictory. I understand they are a faith based organization but who knows how many people could be reached by working for them who didn't know Christ before?

1 Sandy234

Donor

Rating: 5

Our family has given to World Vision over the last few years because of two simple reasons - One, we love Jesus and His call to help everyone in this world, in His name! Secondly, we also have a small farm with Ducks, a goat, a pony and misc other animals, and we love giving our sons, Stephen (7) and Michael (3) choices from which to give! Of course we have chosen Ducks one of those times, but also medicines, Bibles in children's own languages, and other items. I have just recently investigated the % overhead of different world helping organizations, and am thrilled that they are listed as one of the best organizations to give through!! Most of us never endure first hand devastating poverty here in America (we support our local food pantry too when we can because we know there is definite need here too), and it is wonderful to reach out and feed those in the most need, all so that they too may know how much our God loves them -and wants to be their God too if they do not yet know Him through Jesus!! Keep it up :) and all the best~
Hugs,
Sandy, Lloyd, Stephen & Michael

Review from CharityNavigator

2

Donor

Rating: 5

I just returned from Guatemala and saw first hand the work WV is doing-simply amazing! What an honor to be part of the reason they are doing such a remarkable difference.
I met my sponsor and her family...beyond a blessing! We visited various projects WV started in several communities where they teach a trade, provide the funds then once the community ise making a good profit, they leave them to run the "business" and start up a new one. The gratefulness of the communities for the difference WV is doing was wonderful. I highly recommend WV.
As for Mr. Stearns salary....he took a huge pay cut to work for WV. It would be like someone asking you to do a work for God but they can only pay you 10% of what you're making...Would you do it? He's done a great work with WV and will continue. If you read his book The Hole In Our Gospel (www.theholeinourgospel.com) you'll learn A LOT on what is our part in beating poverty and the death of millions. It's not a WV commercial, it's just pulling the blanket off "Are we doing what God has asked us to"? BTW, the book won best Christian book of the year...a MUST read!

Review from CharityNavigator

1 Amy A.

Donor

Rating: 5

I have been a donor to World Vision since 2003 and a child sponsor since 2004. And I just love this organization. They are really making a difference in our world. In 2009, I traveled to Kenya to meet my sponsor children and their families. It was really encouraging to see first hand how my donations over the years are really making a difference in this community. School buildings, dormitories, water irrigation systems and all would not have been possible without child sponsorships. I also learned while in Africa that the families do not actually receive money. The sponsorship ensures that the child is able to attend school and their immediate needs- food, clothing, water, shelter, and health are met.

Review from CharityNavigator

10

Donor

Rating: 2

This organization seems to be a good one and has a great track record in the past. I have been donating the past six months and hoped my giving would make an impact for others in need. However, over the course of the 6 months, I have received a barrage of mail ranging from thank you letters to solicitations for more donations. It has been bothering me and I was too lazy to do anything about it, but today I received more mailers and that was the last straw so I contacted them directly and voiced my concerns. I was told I could change the mailer preferences online but when I attempted to change it there was no option to do so since I am not sponsoring a child and making regular donations (although I donate every month to where it is needed most) on their system. So we had to make a direct request to do so. This type of waste makes me uneasy and I am very motivated now to see what is actually going on there. There really needs to be some accountability here and I would love to see some more efficiency. Salaries should be payed out and people should be compensated but $300K to run a charity does seem a bit excessive and $50K for a CEO is way too low. As for mailers...totally unacceptable. They need a better way for people to set up paperless statements. Cut the waste! Put the money where their mouth is when they say $35 a month can save a child! Okay, I need to breathe. Anyhow, does anyone agree with me on this? Or am I way outta line here venting about a charity I really love and wish to keep donating to? Something needs to be done and I would like to see some action taken here. Do we need Michael Moore to handle something like this? lol Anyway, please don't tell me that they use 85% of donations promoting the good cause and the 15% on overhead. I get that msg. on the wasteful flyers they send me. I wish they would hire or have someone audit them and trim the fat and make the place more efficient and stretch those hard earned dollars that people fork over to them. So having said all this, anyone down to make a change?

1

Donor

Rating: 5

I think World Vision is a wonderful organization, and I am thankful to be able to donate to it.

I am a donor who visited the child I sponsor in India. I was very impressed by the work World Vision does. World Vision operating in India is run by Indian nationals. They were professional, yet able to relate to the people in the village where my child lives.

One thing people may not understand about child sponsorship is that when a donor sponsors a child, he or she is really sponsoring not just that one child, but the whole village where the child lives. The village is helped, and this benefits the child more than if only that individual child is helped. However, World Vision makes it possible for a donor to provide extra help to the child if he or she wishes.

Review from CharityNavigator

Donor

Rating: 5

These people are who they say they are. WV is transparent, ethical, and an outstanding Christian witness in this troubled world.

4

Donor

Rating: 2

Do not choose Haiti sponsorship through World Vision: try a different charity. Through WVI, I had sponsored a young girl over several years. The photos I received looked VERY much like they were taken all at the same time: the girl never got older. When I made a large gift, they sent me a newsletter showing only men. I am sure my money helped in some way, but it did not go to the girl I wanted to help.

Review from Guidestar

2

Donor

Rating: 4

I am so SORRY Mr. Stearn's and board. I previously posted a negative comment-- and God has been gracious to convict me. Thankfully it has now been removed and I pray I did not cause much damage or discouragement with my words . May God forgive me. Not only do I have a huge "log" in my own eye- I have forgotten Christ's warning "Do not judge, or you to will be judged. For in the same way you judge others , you too will be judged, and with the same measure you use, it will be measured to you." Matthew 7:1 Please forgive my arrogance and self-righteousness. PLEASE.

Review from CharityNavigator

1

Donor

Rating: 5

In 2001 through 2005, my husband and I sponsored children through World Vision. The organization has been helping communities throughout the world for over 50 years. They are completely trustworthy and understand the power of prayer as much as the power of monetary support. It is obvious that they care deeply about the lives of others. World Vision registers with agencies in many states, so it is possible to request information about them directly, if you feel that is necessary. But I can assure you that they are highly organized and dependable. I have a great deal of respect for their humanitarian efforts and outreach.