Where do you work?
We currently work in more than 435 communities in Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Mexico, Tanzania, and Thailand. We are currently exploring new programs in additional countries as well.
How do you decide where to work?
We focus our efforts on places where extreme poverty is caused or exacerbated by environmental degradation. This is where our programs and expertise can most effectively bring about lasting transformation. Plant With Purpose uses a matrix of needs to determine where we can be most effective. In addition, Plant With Purpose seeks to identify local leaders, including churches, with whom to partner.
Why do you plant trees?
Reforestation is one of the most effective components of sustainable rural development. Although seemingly simple, planting trees is one of the most important things we do. Trees restore productivity to the land, creating a sustainable means for smallholder farmers to provide for their families. Planting trees leads to increased crop production, which means food security and better nutrition for families and surplus produce to sell for income. As incomes grow, farming families are able to invest in the future, send their children to school, provide for household needs, and more.
Additionally, one of the most vital roles of trees is protecting natural water sources. Without trees, springs dry up, water tables recede, wells give out, and rainfall becomes irregular. Tree roots act as a sponge, reducing runoff and allowing water to soak into the ground. As a result of planting trees, farms can retain water needed to grow crops, and springs, streams, and rivers begin to flow again. Trees also act as a filter, purifying the water in natural water sources. Finally, they protect water sources by stopping erosion, landslides, and flash flooding, which are harmful to water sources and the people who depend on them for survival.
Why do you focus so much on agriculture?
The vast majority of the world’s poorest people (those scraping by on less than $1.25 a day) live in rural areas and depend completely on the land to survive. Most are smallholder farming families who need what is grown on their land to put food on the table and earn income for basic essentials. Crop yields can often be doubled or tripled by implementing a few simple techniques. We teach sustainable farming methods because they are cost efficient, use resources already on hand, and serve to protect the environment as an investment in the future.
Do you practice organic agriculture?
Yes, as much as we can. The use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides are discouraged. Organic pesticides are easily made with resources on hand, and solutions to chemical fertilizers are found in compost, green manures, bio-intensive planting, and agroforestry techniques.
What do governments think of you?
Local Plant With Purpose staff members work hard to develop constructive relationships with regional and national governments where they work. In fact, we have received grants for our work from the national governments of Mexico, the Dominican Republic, and the United States.
Do you work with AIDS victims?
Yes. Many communities, particularly in our African programs have been deeply affected by HIV and AIDS. Through improved nutrition and economic opportunity, our work helps improve the health of those living with HIV and AIDS and also give hope for a better life to many of those orphaned by AIDS.
How do you measure progress?
Trained local staff regularly monitor activities, achievements, and number of participants, providing quarterly reports on this information. U.S.-based staff conduct regular site visits and work with local staff to evaluate program effectiveness. Local program staff also seek feedback from program participants on results and areas of needed improvement. Long-term program impact is also gauged through formal impact evaluations that compare surveys of a significant sampling of both participant households and non-participant households.
How often do you visit the countries where you work?
Full-time, in-country staff facilitate programs within each country where we work. Plant With Purpose places high value on local leadership, and all staff members of international programs are nationals to their respective countries. U.S.-based staff also travel to each country regularly to help set goals and budgets, evaluate progress, ensure program effectiveness, and share the work of Plant With Purpose with supporters.
Where does your support come from?
Approximately half our financial support comes from individuals and churches. The remainder comes from foundations, corporations, special events, and seasonal campaigns. Click here for a complete review of our finances.
Is my donation tax-deductible?
Yes. Plant With Purpose is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. We will send you a tax receipt once your gift has been processed. If you have any questions, please contact us.