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The story of Tearfund

For more than fifty years Tearfund have helped to transform lives, releasing people from poverty for good. Over the decades, often through local churches, we’ve helped millions of people hit by disaster. We supported them in their darkest hour with food and shelter. And we stayed to help them rebuild.

A vision for compassion in action

In 1968, the Evangelical Alliance Relief Fund Committee met for the first time to form a vision for a new organisation which would become Tearfund. Its aim was to marry Christian compassion with practical action around the world.

Tearfund called for a new, radical understanding of the gospel as a message that truly was ‘good news to the poor’, as Jesus had originally described it. The new emphasis was on caring for people’s physical and spiritual needs.

Tearfund today

Today, Tearfund is one of the UK’s leading relief and development agencies. Our reputation is built on good practice and decades of experience. God’s direction over Tearfund’s development can be seen in the innovative ways in which it has responded to injustice over the years.

We have pioneered, adapted, trialled and learnt to make sure faith is intertwined with all our work. That means integrating our faith in ways that are responsive and sensitive to the context and culture – while remaining true to our values.

Faith and church at the centre

One of our distinctives is putting the church at the centre of all we do. God calls the church to help release people from poverty, regardless of their faith or background, and we see part of Tearfund’s role as enabling the church to live out this calling.

Faith is what motivates us to tackle poverty and injustice and what drives us on to do better. So prayer and biblical reflection have been constants along the way, guiding our steps.