The mission of Faith Partnership Inc. is to improve the lives of low-income people and low-income communities by connecting community and faith-based institutions, corporations, and individuals to a range of new skills and resources. We were founded in 2001 by Eva Clarke, our President and Chief Executive Officer. Eva's fifteen years of leadership experience with community development corporations (C.D.C.s), faith-based institutions, and a major community development financial institution (C.D.F.I.) equips her to understand diverse constituencies and to bridge the gaps between them.
Faith Partnership was launched out of our recognition of two key realities:
- faith-based institutions play a vital role in providing goods and services to poor and disenfranchised members of our society.
- faith-based institutions need expand their access to human and financial capital, partnerships, and management expertise in order to bring their social programs to scale.
In other words, since most faith-based institutions seek to be channels of God's love to the world around them, they need to fully engage the resources that God has made available to them. Our initial approach to our mission was to focus on the faith-based institutions in our community and to help them establish connections with key anchor institutions. Much of this work was done in the form of consulting services.
We eventually realized that our work would be more effective if we modelled these kinds of connections as a faith-based institution ourselves. Therefore, in 2005 we reorganized Faith Partnership as the community development affiliate of Life Church Ministries, Inc *.
The Bible records the story of God's incarnation in Jesus Christ. By becoming human God was able to relate to men and women personally and as a part of their natural world. This enabled him to influence them in new and more effective ways. At Faith Partnership we pursue that incarnational model by creating strategic alliances with the same types of partnering anchor institutions that we initially worked with. In this way we expand our impact on the communities that we serve as we develop models that will be useful for other faith-based institutions.
We now concentrate our efforts in four key areas: network building, educational enrichment, institution building, and consulting/training.
- Convenes community, faith-based and corporate institutions as well as individuals for discussion, information sharing, and relationship building.
- Encourages and designs partnerships that benefit faith-based social initiatives.
- Develops innovative programs to promote academic excellence in students of color, and low-income and urban youth.
- Advocates for social change to create a more nuturing academic environment in the schools affected by these programs.
- Fosters the creation and support of community financial and economic development institutions in low income, economically depressed or deteriorated neighborhoods, cities or towns.
- Promotes the expansion of lending to faith-based and community institutions.
- Develops lending criteria and tools.
- Provides training and technical assistance in the areas of affordable housing development, entrepreneurship, economic development, and other social initiatives.
- Engages in development consulting, program planning, resource development and project administration.