Leaders know all about trust. Handling tough choices in our businesses, communities, churches and development programs demands trust – in the strength of our relationships, in the skills and experience we bring, in our values, and above all, in God’s abiding love and guiding hand.
“Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul” (Psalm 143:8 NIV).
As leaders, we can build Trust in a World of Change. Amid daily chaos, fear and misunderstanding, we are called to help restore right relationships – with God, with neighbors, and with all of creation. At MEDA we believe people in business can serve God with their unique gifts. When we take a risk with the poor and apply business principles to create sustainable livelihoods, hope is clearly the result – hope for economic security, hope for a better future, hope for peace and prosperity.
In business, as in all of life, relationships are the key. Despite flagrant betrayals by some, trust is really at the heart of all business transactions. Relationships depend on trust, so to restore relationships we need to build trust. And that takes time. It comes not so much from what we say but from how we live daily in business, in our professions, in our families. And it begins with hospitality. “Also you shall not oppress a stranger, for you know the heart of a stranger, because you were strangers in the land of Egypt” (Exodus 23:9 NKJV).
This year MEDA’s work extended trust and hospitality to 2.2 million families in 39 countries, in partnership with 127 locally owned and managed organizations. Families in places as remote as Afghanistan and Tajikistan, and as close to home as New Orleans and Appalachia, have all benefited from increased incomes, new skills and better health. We have developed friendships and better understanding – relationships based on trust that are surely the building blocks to peace.
We are delighted that 2007 has been a year of continued growth for MEDA, with a positive bottom line. Revenue increased by 17 percent to $16.1 million, while contributions from our 2,500 members and 1,600 donors grew 46 percent to $2.6 million – providing the valuable matching funds that help us leverage contracts from governments and large donors. Our net surplus of $1 million, resulting primarily from generous contributions to our Sarona Risk Capital Fund and some appreciation in the value of our investments, will be reinvested in businesses that serve the poor.
We are immensely grateful to our members and our board who generously share their time, skills and resources to help MEDA build Trust in a World of Change. We invite you to join in this work.
Allan Sauder, President
Mel Stjernholm, Chair