In the last 25 years, the number of people living in extreme poverty has been cut by more than half. Despite this momentous progress, nearly 1 in 10 people still live below the global measure of extreme poverty, the majority of whom are smallholder farmers and their families in rural sub-Saharan Africa.*
Parents everywhere are driven by a dream — for their children’s lives to be better than their own. Yet millions of people in the most impoverished parts of the world are smallholder farmers who lack access to the knowledge, capital, markets, technology, and information they need to build thriving businesses.
Economic empowerment is not an end in itself, but a tangible expression of God’s love that radically changes the lives of children and families today — a transformation that lasts for generations.
World Vision’s fully integrated, proven approach to economic empowerment equips hardworking men and women to move from surviving to thriving. Join us to help hardworking families break the cycle of extreme poverty for good.
Millions of these farmers have never had the opportunity to learn to save, work together, or improve their farming practices. Most have never been able to open a bank account or get a loan. Many are unaware of how to handle floods, droughts, market fluctuations, and other emergencies that can cripple their businesses. Most have developed a worldview rooted in feelings of powerlessness and lack of self-worth. And they are at the mercy of an unpredictable climate, destructive cultural practices, and corruption.
All of this leads to persistent, generational poverty — as parents are unable to improve their incomes, the vicious cycle of poverty is perpetuated in the lives of their children.
Our partnership with you, as brothers and sisters in Christ, gives World Vision the privilege of reflecting God’s love to hardworking families who have endured desperate circumstances, helping them move from poverty to prosperity.
The outcomes of World Vision’s empowered worldview and end-to-end systems approach have been remarkable.
Aggregate incomes for communities that embrace and employ World Vision’s THRIVE model have risen significantly — double or more. Families who have participated in all aspects of the model in Tanzania saw their incomes grow 400 to 600 percent in many cases.
These hardworking farmers finally have the ability to consistently feed their children nutritious food; send them to school; cover bills for basic healthcare; build a house made of brick with a metal roof instead of mud, sticks, and straw; and reinvest in their businesses.
They are building strong relationships by working together to get out of extreme poverty for good. They’re no longer just surviving; they’re thriving.
World Vision’s community-led THRIVE model enables vulnerable families to adapt and succeed, ultimately progressing out of poverty so parents and caregivers can sustainably and resiliently provide for their children.
Sustainability means smallholder farmers and pastoralist families will be empowered to move to higher levels of income and improved education, health, and overall well-being as World Vision programming transitions out of the community.
Resiliency means these families are able to withstand or recover quickly from droughts and other emergencies, since the journey upward from extreme poverty to an improved well-being is not without interruptions. A resilient family can absorb stresses, adapt to a changing environment, and transform risks into opportunities.
Through decades of experience in microfinance, value chain development, farmer-managed natural regeneration, and emergency management, World Vision has proven success with a fully integrated approach. When you invest in economic empowerment, you’re addressing other areas that help tackle the root causes of poverty.
CHRISTIAN DISCIPLESHIP Our empowered worldview approach shifts mindsets to an understanding that every person is created in the image of God, has great value, and has the power and responsibility to move from dependency to dignity.
GENDER We identify and address harmful social norms in power and decision-making in communities. Building trust, equitable gender relations, conflict prevention and resolution, and valuing all children provide a foundation for resilience.
WATER As incomes increase, families gain more exposure to water, sanitation, and hygiene enhancements. By assisting families with various water collection methods, they also can improve household gardens for improved income and better nutrition.
MOTHER AND CHILD HEALTH Producing nutrient-rich food at the household level, especially among food-insecure communities, is essential for enabling families to lead healthy lives, lessening the risks of malnutrition and infection.
CHILD PROTECTION We specifically work with families and communities to support parents’ desire to turn their new financial ability into improved child well-being by managing their finances in a way that reflects the love of God with the protection and development of children.
EDUCATION We empower children to flourish with a quality education that parents can now afford with an increase in income.
ADVOCACY By equipping citizens to understand their rights, we can advocate for improved policies and hold governments accountable for their commitments. This opens the way for enduring institutional changes that reduce poverty.
INNOVATION Our approach encourages collaboration, education, and the use of technology, all of which contribute to an innovative society. Communities that innovate can spark systemic changes that have a lasting structural impact to reduce poverty.
FRAGILE STATES We are testing our THRIVE model in at least one fragile state, where communities are more vulnerable to economic crises. We will focus on strengthening livelihoods and equipping these communities with safety nets, such as savings groups, to increase resiliency.
Once you see the ability World Vision has to make an impact, it just makes you want to give more. It’s snowballing in a good way, and we just think it’s so much fun to be part of that.
Sherree Funk National Leadership Council Member and long-time World Vision Partner
The key to ending extreme poverty is to enable the poorest of the poor to get their foot on the ladder of development. ... The poorest of the poor are stuck beneath it. They lack the minimum amount of capital necessary to get a foothold, and therefore need a boost up to the first rung.
Dr. Jeffrey Sachs Quetelet Professor of Sustainable Development and Director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University