How We Empower Local Leaders, Part I

At the beginning of February, Tony wrote a blog called “What’s Happening with Yebo Life.” (If you haven’t read it, you can check it out here. Alternatively, you can download our fact sheet if you prefer visuals.) In his post, Tony listed five ministry components that Yebo Life provides its Ministry Partners. These ministry components are how we seek to achieve our mission.

Our mission is to empower local Christian leaders, who have been given a vision for ministry, to rise up to who God has called them to be and to have impact in their communities.
— Tony Barwick, Co-Founder Yebo Life

Well, we’ve further defined each of those ministry components, and I want to take the next four weeks to tell you more about them! Today, I’ll share about our first ministry component: local and global volunteers.

We provide volunteers and volunteer-related resources to our Ministry Partners and Ministry Connections. Here’s what that looks like:

1. Missions teams
2. Missions team training
3. Long-term volunteer agreements
4. Initiatives to increase local involvement

Missions Teams

One thing our Yebo Life team LOVES doing is hosting missions teams, especially ones from America since we understand American culture and how it reacts in the context of South Africa. Missions teams bring a certain energy level and excitement to the ministries we work with, and in turn, the local ministries typically challenge and expand the perspectives of the foreigners. When done in a way that’s helpful, not harmful, to local people and communities, we truly believe that missions trips are a win-win for everyone involved!

Want to talk about planning a missions trip? Drop us a message!

Missions Team Training

This is something we’re developing as we speak! How exciting! One “gap” that we’ve noticed in Yebo Life's missions trips is cultural sensitivity and missions training. So, we’re creating a one-day training program for all of our foreign missionaries. It's purpose is to familiarize them with South African culture, Yebo Life's mission, and our Ministry Partners' missions. We think this program will really assist us in hosting impactful missions trips.

Long-Term Volunteer Agreements

This is a resource that’s readily available for all of our Ministry Partners. We simply tweak Yebo Life’s Long-Term Volunteer Agreement according to a Partner’s expectations of its long-term volunteers. The document outlines a long-term volunteer’s time commitment, responsibilities, and expectations as well as assures the volunteer that the Ministry Partner appreciates his/her service and is dedicated to ensuring a purposeful ministry experience. One of the worst scenarios for a volunteer is to arrive at a ministry site and receive no direction or anything to do (wah-wah)!

Initiatives to Increase Local Involvement

Our final objective under the local and global volunteer component is to help our Ministry Partners find ways to increase local involvement. While we want to provide relief and assistance where needed, we’re cautious of creating dependency situations. We never want a community’s attitude to become: “Here come the people who give us things, or educate our children, or tell us what to do and how to live.” We want to empower locals to rise up—in the unique ways that God has gifted and called them. We want to see locals getting involved with our Ministry Partners and taking ownership of and pride in the incredible things that are happening in their communities! We want to see all of the willing hearts leading, creating, and testifying to God’s goodness.

Next week, I’ll be sharing about our second ministry component: weekly operations support. In the meantime, please send any questions you have about Yebo Life to

If you’d like to get involved with us financially, please click here. We now have $1,650 in monthly support and are still in need of $1,350 in pledges to meet our $3,000 per month goal! (One-time donations are awesome too!) All donations are tax-deductible, and Yebo Life receives 100% of the funds to pay for team salaries and other operating costs.