Pompano Beach, FL, January 30, 2009 --(PR.com
)-- Cross International Alliance, the affiliation of two South Florida-based international relief agencies, has reached a significant organizational milestone – the distribution of $1 billion worth of food, medicines and other resources to social outreaches in developing countries since its inception in 2001.
This outreach has impacted more than 55 developing countries, ranging from parts of the Caribbean and Latin America to Africa and Southeast Asia.
“Milestones like this are an opportunity to highlight growth that has taken place incrementally – and may have gone unnoticed by many,” Cross President Jim Cavnar said. “It allows you to step back and get some perspective on what’s happened. When you do, you see what God has accomplished through your efforts, and it’s often more than you thought possible.”
According to Cavnar, annual growth of Cross International and Cross International Catholic Outreach has averaged 35 percent over the past seven years, climbing even during periods of economic downturn.
“To put that growth in perspective, during our first year of operation, Cross provided about $2.3 million in aid to church-based programs in three countries: Haiti, Trinidad, and Guyana. In 2008, Cross gave more than $247 million in aid to ministries in 37 countries, reaching a cumulative total of more than $1 billion in aid to the poor in over 55 countries worldwide,” he said, adding that the growth of the Cross Alliance has also brought steady improvements to the methods and systems the charity uses.
“Over the years we’ve developed a reputation for delivering very high quality goods very efficiently and the key to that success has been our method of distributing aid the poor through the existing network of churches already in place overseas,” he said. “That approach is very cost effective – allowing about 97 percent of donations on commodities and program services that benefit the poor. Less than 3% is used for administrative expenses and fund raising.”
Cavnar also explained that organizational growth has made Cross more effective at providing cash grants for projects and programs run by overseas ministries.
“We have more staff to visit and evaluate each project regularly. Our philosophy of long-term commitment means we now have four, five, and seven-year relationships with these ministries, so we can continue to give them aid with increasing confidence. And we are much more effective at getting high-quality reports from partners overseas, so we can be better accountable to our donors in the States. Donors frequently tell us our reports to them are the best they’ve received from any other organization,” he said.
Ultimately, Cavnar sees the organization’s success in less conventional, more spiritual terms. “I really feel our growth is in God’s hands. We should focus on serving,” he said. “The poor trust the Lord daily for all of the necessities of life. God knows what they need and will come to their aid. If our ministry has grown and succeeded it’s because we remain a faithful tool in His hands. We are just an instrument for God to answer the prayers of the poor.”
About Cross: Cross International Alliance, composed of Cross International and Cross International Catholic Outreach, is an ecumenical Christian relief and development organization currently working in more than two dozen developing countries. In addition to providing material aid such as food, clothing, shelter and medicines, Cross supports ongoing programs that help the poor lift themselves out of poverty and thus break its vicious cycle. By working together with local pastors, missionaries, and churches around the world, we ensure that the aid reaches those who need it the most. For more information, visit www.crossinternational.org or call 954-657-9000.
Contact: Brian Schutt