When Mission Discovery began in 1991 there were only a few agencies like ours focused on taking groups on short term mission trips. Of the agencies that surface to the top in search engines under our key search term “Mission Trips,” how do you know which to select?
Here are three things to consider when choosing an agency to fulfill your team’s call to serve those in in need.
Does the agency have a core belief that lines with the “Great Commission” of Christ. The focus of Mission Discovery is unique in the world of short term missions. We believe that you have a story to tell. Your story is powerful because it is the story of God’s work in your life. Mission Discovery training helps each participant tell his or her story in a way that communicates clearly the message of Christ.
Secondly, does the agency have a record of delivering what is promised in written trip descriptions. The agency you work with must be willing to share contact information of past church leaders who can give a report of how the agency performed.
Lastly is leadership. Ask who are the leaders of the trip you are considering, and how many years of experience they bring to the mission trip.
Some other things to consider are financial transparency, whether or not the agency is a not-for-profit (there are actually some for-profit short term mission agencies out there).
A good place to look for financial information on a non-profit mission agency is at ECFA.org. Agencies seeking transparency in finance are members of ECFA. Membership requires an annual audit. We also like GuideStar.org. There you can download a non-profit’s 990 IRS information. A 990 is a bit of a play by play of an agencies financial year.
Just one more thing. Some agencies like Mission Discovery raise money that comes alongside the fees you pay for mission trips. We have a fundraising goal each year. What this means is that you can expect to receive more on a Mission Discovery trip than you paid for! Ask the agency you are interviewing if they staff raise support. If the answer is yes you will benefit!
For more information about Mission Discovery mission trips visit www.MissionDiscovery.org or call today 800-767-8720!