Partners International takes seriously the responsibility of selecting indigenous ministry partners to work with. We are guided by prayer and time-tested processes developed over almost 70 years.
The ministries that seem to work best in partnership with us tend to have the following qualities:
Strategic fit – we look for ministries whose vision is a strategic fit with our own.
Strong ministry structure – we look for ministries that are well organized and have their own, indigenous accountability structures (board of directors or the equivalent).
Past performance – it is generally preferable to partner with a ministry that has a record of proven results and has demonstrated the commitment to forge ahead with whatever resources they already have available.
Doctrinal stand – the ministry's theological position must be compatible with Partners International's Statement of Faith.
Goals – should be clear, measurable and achievable.
Policies and procedures – while they may be very basic, particularly for small ministries, they must be adequate enough to guide the workers and to provide a system of accountability for the organization.
Personnel – the staff must be adequate in both number and skill to accomplish the ministry's intended goals.
Local credibility – those who know the ministry should be able to recommend it without reservation. There should also be a solid base of local people who believe in the ministry and are involved with it, giving of their time and finances.
Cooperation with other local Christian groups – it should be determined whether any significant tensions exist with other ministries in the area, and whether the ministry is able to work together with other groups.
Legal standing – the ministry should be legally registered as well as have permission to receive funds from outside their own country (in countries where this is possible, where the church is not underground). Typically, property should be registered in the name of the ministry and not in the name of an individual.
To move toward partnership, a potential partner completes an extensive questionnaire about its organization and its work. Our Area Directors conduct on-site evaluations. Other leadership staff may visit as well. Information is submitted to our headquarters office so that a consensus can be reached by the leadership team. The entire decision process can take from a few months to a year or more.