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How we advocate

Advocacy is an essential element of World Vision’s work, along with long-term community development and emergency response.  As we work alongside communities to build a better world for children, our advocacy challenges the policies, systems, structures, practices and attitudes that make it difficult for vulnerable children and their families to experience “life in all its fullness” (John 10:10).  By addressing the systemic contributors and causes of poverty, World Vision’s advocacy work ensures that community transformation is sustainable and scalable. 

World Vision advocates at the local, national, regional and global levels, informed by our experience working with communities. In the U.S. context, World Vision approaches the government as our partner, developing strategic relationships with key elected officials and mobilizing donors and advocates to steward their influence to impact U.S. foreign policy on behalf of children living in poverty.

How we’re different

We are motivated by our faith. World Vision bases its advocacy work on the same values that shape our humanitarian work: our Christian faith and our commitment to the poor. We are called to aid people in great need — to relieve their suffering and to create sustainable solutions to the poverty that prevents children from experiencing life in all its fullness. 

The exodus of God’s people from Egypt is the first example of advocacy in Scripture, and it guides our approach to advocacy today (see below, from Exodus 3 and 4). All spiritual gifts and skill sets can contribute to the work of advocacy, and God’s power can move our leaders to action. Trusting in this power, we give prayer an integral place in our advocacy efforts. Additionally, as 92% of current U.S. members of Congress publicly claim faith in Christ, we believe U.S. Christians have a particularly unique role to play in influencing them, and we equip advocates to employ their faith as they engage with elected officials.
We advocate with authority and confidence, using evidence rooted in our relationships with the poor at the community level. Our efforts are intended to amplify the voices of the unheard, and whenever possible, we let the poor speak for themselves — just as God declared in Isaiah that the poor would play the primary role in the restoration of their communities. Believing that our advocacy is on behalf of real lives rather than abstract issues, and that those lives have great worth and value to God, we lift up the stories of those in poverty. We trust that these stories will move our leaders to make decisions with compassion.
  • Proverbs 14:31
  • Isaiah 61:1, 3-4
Understanding that most elected officials enter office with good intentions and a sincere desire to effect positive change, we seek to cast a vision for a better world. Leaders need the courage to fulfill their role as God intended — to be servants for the well-being of everyone, including the poor. When leaders fail to fulfill this God-ordained role, we seek to speak truth prophetically and to hold leaders accountable to act justly in serving this common good.
  • Romans 13:4
  • Psalm 72:1-4,12-14

Impact

We’ve had the privilege of making history. Over the last two decades, World Vision has helped bring about historic change through playing a key role in the formation of policies that affect millions of lives around the world. Learn about the impact we’ve made as we followed God’s call to speak up on behalf of the poor and the forgotten.