Taking Stock…The Right Partners

Bob Lepine (Vice President/Chief Content Officer, FamilyLife): Since you wrote that check for the first half of that orphan’s home in Nicaragua, you’ve had other homes that have been built. The first year you said there was one, and then two the next year, and last year how many homes were built?

Troy Wiseman (Co-Founder/Chairman, World Orphans): We did two a week.

Bob: Two a week. So, 100-plus homes?

Dennis Rainey (CEO/President, FamilyLife): He’s getting closer to his goal of building one a day.

Troy: That’s right.

Bob: And to get to one a day, for you to achieve that goal, what’s it going to take?

Troy: Well, obviously, it’s going to take some additional people getting behind the ministry and sending some capital, but we actually slowed it down a little bit to reevaluate – Is the model right? What do we need to change? What are we doing well? What are we not doing well? You have to do that from time to time.

I don’t want it to be about the numbers. I want it to be about the mission. We got to the point where, my original co-founder with me, kind of hit a plateau. We were looking at the tree, and we had to shake things up a little bit. So we found out the things we thought we did well, didn’t do well, brought in a new President

…But it’s really about the right partners. It’s really about the financial partner and the church.

Bob: So you’re trying to get folks who could help fund the ministry to partner with you, but you’re also trying to get local churches who would catch a vision for this. What’s their role in making it happen?

Troy: I would say the bigger role is finding the right partner. What we want is the church to take the responsibility that the Bible commands the congregation to do, and "look after the orphans and widows" and be proactive in the church to say, "We’re going to have an orphan ministry."

What we want is the phone to ring and hear, "We have a church who has some land. We have a church in China, Africa, Ukraine. They’re going to feed them. They’re going to educate them. They’re going to teach them the Word of God. They’re going to be their family. What we need is the money to build the building."

So that’s what we need. We need the partner.


(Image: A homeless widow and her child in Caracas, Venezuela)

Dennis: You’re looking for people who have the same passion as you and who are not just willing to give their money, but who are willing to get involved and connect their hearts to those children’s hearts on an ongoing basis.

Troy: Right.

From: FamilyLifeToday with Dennis Rainey
Broadcast date: 08/07/07
(Edited and Abridged)

To be continued…


For the nine months before I was appointed the new CEO/President of World Orphans, I was acting dually as a Vice President of the ministry and the President of Orphan Lifeline, an organization that came into partnership with World Orphans on numerous projects. During that nine-month overlap I visited 50 World Orphans projects in over 20 different countries (24 to be exact.) We effectively merged the two organizations thereafter as the visions became one and the same.

Based on our observed work in the field, as well as the return of almost 250 surveys sent out to our church partners, we did indeed discover what was working well…and what was in need of improvement. We determined what the "best partner" in the field looks like for us and how they are uncovered and approved. We also ascertained that we needed to better develop the partnerships here – US churches, businesses and individuals who heed the call to care for the widow and orphan.

This weekend, I will start to post excerpts from a letter that I sent to many of our stakeholders back in October last year. It is an "inside look" the details some of these changes as they were being implemented at that time. Much has happened since then and we hope to continue to effectively communicate all the wonderful partnerships and involvements that God has given to World Orphans.

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