What is Community Development?

TEAR Fund's holistic approach to sustainable community development addresses areas of major social concern amongst the poor in developing countries.

We work in unique partnerships with indigenous Christian agencies, enabling partners to meet the needs of the community and empowering people to become self-sufficient.

TEAR Fund's long-term approach helps communities reach their goals of eradicating poverty. When you support TEAR Fund you support strong, effective Christian action, transforming people's lives and helping them realise their potential.

TEAR Fund's mission is to bring the good news, love and justice of Jesus to the world's poorest communities and open the doors for them to share in the West's abundance.


TEAR Fund New Zealand helps deficient communities in the developing world become self-reliant, secure and healthy. TEAR Fund finances and provides technical support for clean water, food security, healthcare, forestry, fishing and agricultural projects. We work with communities to strengthen indigenous leadership and provide access to education and vocational training. TEAR Fund challenges injustices and exploitation, plus facilitates reconciliation in communities divided by ethnicity and religion.


Empowering Women
Women work 67% of the world’s labour, yet earn less than 10% of the world’s income and own only 1% of the world’s property. Women suffer a higher proportion of malnutrition and anaemia - each year vast numbers die needlessly in childbirth. Women and children account for 70% of the world’s refugee population. TEAR Fund supports projects which work towards empowering women through Microenterprise development, vocational training, education and healthcare programmes.


Empowering the Urban Poor
Increasingly, the the world's population is concentrated in urban areas, where unemployment, inadequate housing and a lack of social structures cause severe problems. The urban poor live in crowded shantytowns, often without amenities or drainage. They face a constant threat to their well-being due to appalling living conditions. TEAR Fund supports projects which work to provide access to public services - adequate housing, electricity, drainage and health clinics. A wonderful example is the ASHA project, which has transformed one of South Delhi’s worst slums into a dignified community.


Healthcare and Clean Water
TEAR Fund New Zealand stresses the importance of primary healthcare – the prevention of disease through education, immunisation and clinics. The training of national workers is a priority. This enables the continuation of ongoing healthcare. These projects have an emphasis on mothers and children. It has been estimated 80% of the world’s diseases could be eradicated if clean water was available. TEAR Fund supports projects providing clean water to individuals and communities. TEAR Fund also supports AIDS healthcare and education projects. The church is in a unique and challenging position as AIDS devastates many developing countries. TEAR Fund is supporting and encouraging the church as it responds with compassion to those who suffer.

Sustainable agriculture
Agricultural programmes enable the underprivileged to produce sufficient food to eat. Training and resources are provided - techniques must be appropriate and sustainable, restoring and conserving the environment. Examples of such programmes are the cattle-breeding projects in Indonesia, a reforestation and solar oven programme in Afghanistan and our support of Honduran rain forest Indians. TEAR Fund monitors some of the world’s most endangered environments. Working with local partners, we assist communities in developing sustainable farming and cultivation methods. The aim is to provide sustainable programmes which protect the environment while meeting the needs of the poor. This offers the best route for expressing a Christian concern for the whole of God’s creation.



Read through the Communities we work with here >>

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