Living in extreme poverty means living without hope. Poverty is a vicious cycle of failure that reinforces feelings of inferiority and worthlessness. Families in poverty often have no one to rely on in times of crisis.*

The Great Commission Foundation works with over 370 ministries and organizations around the world; many of them work with the those living in extreme poverty. International Care Ministries is a project that focuses on children who are at the bottom of the economic ladder in the Philippines. As the 12th most populous country in the world, the Philippines is home to more than 100 million people. Despite robust economic growth in recent years, 25 million Filipinos still live in extreme poverty on incomes below US$1.25 per day. At the absolute bottom of this economic ladder are seven million people struggling to survive in “ultra-poverty” on less than US$0.50 per day. These are the families that ICM focuses on bringing help and hope.

Transforming lives starts with hope. The complex problems of poverty require an innovative, holistic solution. Across the Philippines, ICM reaches families who typically live in four kinds of communities – urban slums, rural plains, remote mountain regions and coastal fishing villages. Each type of terrain shapes the way families experience poverty. No matter where these families are located, living on less than US$0.50 per day means each day is a struggle to meet even the most basic needs. Transform is ICM’s core strategic program, designed to address the wide range of needs faced by families living in ultra-poverty. Transform starts by creating supportive environments for hope to grow, then invests in building capacity for sustainable progress out of poverty.

Transform is about learning in community. A local pastor and six volunteers invite 30 of the poorest families in the community to join the weekly Transform training classes. This new network of support and encouragement becomes a safe place for learning to take hold. Once a week, ICM Trainers show up to teach the multi-faceted course, designed to address common problems faced by poor families. At the end of four months, the whole community enjoys deeper relationships, healthier families, greater productivity and hope for tomorrow.

Hope is the key: progress out of poverty must start with the belief that change is possible. The biblical Values lessons taught during Transform foster attitudes and behaviors that result in strong relationships; they lead to greater respect for self and others. Transform strengthens families, builds social networks, and nurtures self-esteem and confidence which results in aspirations and hope for the future.*

If you are looking for opportunities to impact lives, consider getting involved with ICM and/or join us in praying for the ultra-poor families in the Philippines. Please also consider supporting ICM financially, your monthly donations literally change the world for people living in ultra-poverty in the Philippines. Through the work of ICM they receive the Gospel, discipleship, support and a lot of love; with your help more families can be provided with hope for a better future.  Thank you for considering supporting International Care Ministries through prayer, your time or your finances.

International Care Ministry (ICM) is a project of the Great Commission Foundation. The Great Commission Foundation is based in Canada and has over 370 projects operating nationally and internationally, we are proud to have ICM as part of our organization. Together we thrive and are able to fulfill the great commission of Jesus Christ.

*The information included in this article was taken directly from International Care Ministries’ website: https://www.caremin.com/