Helping people to help themselves, goal of LDS Charities

The overarching goal of LDS Charities is to help people help themselves. Therefore, each humanitarian project requires that beneficiaries do all they can before help is provided. Then, funds donated to the Humanitarian Fund are allocated to projects where they will serve the most people with high-priority needs.

For large projects like the Luputa water project, a site monitor — usually a local returned missionary — is hired to oversee the project. Trusted organizations staffed with local people are enlisted as partners. Finally, welfare missionaries orchestrate the entire project from beginning to end.

Much of the humanitarian work is done by volunteer senior missionary couples who are usually called to serve for 18 months.

"When we got our letter that said, 'humanitarian services,' I cried," said Sister Joan Moody of Orem, Utah. "I knew welfare missionaries were out in hard places dealing with hard things. My husband and I had a lot of talks and came to a great peace about what we were going to do. From the beginning we felt protected. We felt like the Lord would be with us, and whatever we had to do, we were going to be doing His work among His children."

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