“That’s when God really started to show me that I need to really see what happens without solutions before He would give me the solutions. To really just understand the true evil that’s in the world when it comes to poverty and corruption.”
Tina Schmidt is the director of Zoe Helps, an organization that empowers the empowers the world’s most vulnerable children. God gave her a front row seat to the systemic injustice and poverty in countries like Africa and a call to find solutions.
“I got to see it up close and personal in many ways. I started looking for better answers and I thought there’s got to be a way to empower children and keep them in their communities on a larger scale and a way to solve all of the deep systemic issues that are going on in the cultures where we serve.”
Often, as Christians we want to rise up and write a check. We might mean well, but are the hand-outs we give to those in poverty really the help they need? Tina says that it’s important to understand that our Western culture views poverty very differently than those cultures that are actually impoverished.
“We define poverty as lacking of something. It’s usually a material thing, but I like to ask the people I serve, how do you define poverty? Their definition of poverty is very different, they use words like like voiceless, powerlessness, shame. One Kenyan that I just recently met on my last trip said, ‘poverty is the inability to contribute to society.’”
To them, poverty cannot be easily measured.
“It’s about those intangible things for them, not having dignity, and not being able to stand up for yourself and having respect. Many people have no expectation of rights and they do not know how to stand up for themselves with their own voice.”
Zoe Helps is empowering children to live self-sustaining lives dependent on no one but our loving Heavenly Father.
Tina Schmidt is the Director of Philanthropic Relations for ZOE Helps, a nonprofit organization that empowers the world’s most vulnerable children to become fully self-sufficient, find the hope of Jesus Christ and never need charity again.
Key Scripture: Psalm 143
Featured Songs: Glow in the Dark – Jason Gray; All for the One Who Saved Me – River Valley; Your Presence – River ValleyZoe Helps