In last week’s blog we challenged the idea that it is a person’s environment that commits them to long-term poverty, and instead suggested that the way a person thinks, rather than his or her environment, is the more crucial factor in overcoming the poverty cycle. But just how does one empower and equip people on mass to change the impoverishing ideas and concepts that inhabit their worldview?
At Metamorphic we are big supporters of leader-led development. Throughout history the greatest families, sports teams, companies and even nations have all generally had one thing in common: they had great leaders who developed themselves and who cared. Alternatively, the worst families, sports teams, companies and nations have also generally had one thing in common: they have had self-interested egotistical leaders who lacked empathy. One needs look no further than the Arab spring uprisings to see that when change occurs from the bottom up, it usually does so via revolution with often disastrous results.
The Metamorphic Community Transformation Program specifically seeks to equip and empower church leaders/planters who have a demonstrated commitment to the development of themselves, their families and their communities. By assisting these leaders to gain the knowledge and skills to see opportunities where previously only problems existed, we are by extension able to impact communities on mass, as these leaders in partnership with their communities implement and drive poverty-relieving development. Using mostly resources and skills locally available to them these leaders typically help their communities solve issues of WASH, poor roads, education, health and small business to name just a few.
Through leader-led development, these church leaders/planters are effectively mobilizing their communities to play a significant role in solving issues of poverty that directly affect them, in an affordable and sustainable manner, and without the need for large amounts of outside funds, expertise, technology or assistance. In effect, it is common to see a clear transition from dependence to interdependence taking place amongst these families and communities. If you empower the right leader then you empower the entire community. Check out next week’s blog to read why we choose to work almost exclusively with church leaders/planters.