Faith Partnerships Incorporated grew out of a coalition of leaders in the faith community working in collaboration with the North Carolina Rural Economic Development Center on ways to address the needs of poverty-stricken families. This united effort--the nationally acclaimed Communities of Faith Initiative--evolved into Faith Partnerships, Inc. being created in 2001. Faith Partnerships seeks to extend these successful collaborations into new states by encouraging faith-based organizations to join together to help families in need and equip new partners with the introduction of "best practices" to assist families.
The mission and goals of Faith Partnerships, Inc. are grounded in the belief that impoverished families can be helped through the collaborative efforts of faith-based organizations. Faith Partnerships draws upon successes dating back to 1992, when the Church Child Care Initiative identified the key challenges faced by the rural poor and worked with faith groups to establish programs to meet those needs. The Church Child Care Initiative worked to provide high-quality child care in rural communities. The work resulted in the publication of A Child at the Door, a leading guide for faith-based organizations starting child care programs.
The success of the Church Child Care Initiative in 1993 at addressing child-care needs led to the establishment of the statewide Community of Faith Initiative. The Community of Faith Initiative held a meeting in 1997, convening more that 100 church leaders to explore the role rural churches could play in helping those impacted by welfare reform. In 1999, the Community of Faith Initiative began addressing the issues faced by people moving from welfare-to-work through a contractual partnership with the North Carolina Division of Social Services. This resulted in contracts worth more than $3.3 million with Faith Demonstration Awards being awarded to support multi-county faith-based programs.
As leaders of the faith community join the national discussion of how to best deliver services to families in poverty, Faith Partnerships stand ready to provide crucial technical assistance that such faith organizations will need. Faith-based organizations wanting to become partners in collaborative efforts to help families in poverty will face many challenges. Faith Partnerships is equipped to work with faith organizations to address common challenges such as:
Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done unto me.Matthew 25:40