pure & genuine religion

I already loved Food for the Hungry. But seeing their work firsthand only made me respect and admire them even more.

FH believes in child-focused community transformation. They measure the health of a community by the health of its children (I’m talking about physical, emotional, spiritual, and psychological health). And then by meeting the children’s needs, they empower and build entire families and communities.

Seeing what that actually means—meeting their staff, talking with children and families they impact, and hearing from leaders in the communities they serve—left a lasting impression on me.

FH does things right.

They focus on people, meet needs holistically, do things with excellence, and bring lasting change. And they do it all without fostering dependence.

They go in to each community with an end-goal and an exit strategy. They aren’t there to be a crutch or even to provide hand-outs. They build capacity in both people and communities, leaving them self-sustaining and thriving.

I really was astounded to see the depth of Food for the Hungry’s work. They have over 430 staff members in Ethiopia alone. Oh—and only two of them are American. Their staff are so loved in the communities where they work. Countless children and families raved to us about their FH social workers.

One woman, who cares for her orphaned niece, said, “God has brought Food for the Hungry to us. I have brothers and sisters, none of whom even gave a pen to help this child. But FH provides her school fees and supplies. Glory be to God, FH has helped us a lot.”

FH runs as deep as it is wide, leaving a life-changing impact on individuals and communities.

One of their slogans is “We go to the hard places”. And they definitely do.

We visited some remote villages that face seemingly insurmountable challenges. But FH is there, making a difference and working with the most vulnerable of children who live in inescapable poverty.

They are living out James 1:27—

“Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress…”

Let’s live it out with them.

{Pictures by David Molnar,
photographer extraordinaire and pun-master.}


11 Responses to “pure & genuine religion”
  1. Alysa says:

    I love this Alece! I also love the description of David at the bottom :)

  2. Lolita Valle says:

    Yes, that is pure and genuine religion-exemplified to the fullest.

    Good that you are a part of this, Alece. So, so admirable. Go and expand God’s kingdom.

  3. Heather says:

    These children are absolutely stunning! They sparkle from the inside out.

  4. Your trip has been an answered prayer for my family and I. We have been seeking an organization we can truly give to and feel part of. I am thankful that you were able to go and see where we could not have during this season of our life. Through your seeing, your going, we’ve been able to see that this is something we desire to be part of. On Friday we will pair up with a child and give a part of ourselves to she or he. If that “cutie” you sent me is still in need it will be her. I continue to be thankful for you, for your story. Thank you for sharing with us through your lens.

  5. Do you know really hits me of all your photos of the children, Alece?

    For many, many years all the photos of Ethiopia were of sullen, sad, fly-infested children, starving children – to move us to compassionate giving.

    To see all your photos of smiling, happy children does my heart good. This is one of the obvious side-affects from Food for the Hungry’s work in this country. Hallelujah for that!

  6. I’ve really loved getting to know more about FH through your eyes! And, of course, it warms my heart how much the Ethiopians love their social workers.

  7. Stephanie says:

    I love this…. :)


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  1. [...] In July, I had the incredible privilege of traveling to Ethiopia with FH to see firsthand the work they are doing there. The whole trip was amazing and insightful — truly mind-blowing to see the depth and breadth of the transformative work FH is engaged in. [...]

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