Agriculture, Food, Nutrition

Church World Service Inc

  • Elkhart, IN

Mission Statement

Church World Service works with partners to eradicate hunger and poverty and promote peace and justice around the world.

Main Programs

  1. Development Services
Service Areas



CWS works in Asia, Africa, Latin America, the Caribbean, the Middle East, Eastern Europe, the Balkans and the U.S.

ruling year


President and CEO


Rev. John L. McCullough



hunger, food and water; refugees; children; CROP Hunger Walk, Haiti

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Also Known As






Physical Address

28606 Phillips Street

Elkhart, IN 46514


Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Agricultural Programs (K20)

International Migration, Refugee Issues (Q71)

International Relief (Q33)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?


Self-reported by organization

See Most Significant Change under additional documents section or link


Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

Development Services

Working in partnership with indigenous organizations worldwide including the U.S., Church World Service supports sustainable self-help development, meets emergency needs, aids refugees, and helps address the root causes of poverty and powerlessness.



Population(s) Served

General Public/Unspecified





Charting Impact

Self-reported by organization

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

  1. What is the organization aiming to accomplish?
    Church World Service works to eradicate hunger and poverty and to promote peace and justice around the world. A cooperative agency of 37 Christian denominations and communions based in the U.S., CWS supports sustainable development by meeting emergency needs, assisting refugees and displaced persons, and addressing the root causes of hunger and poverty. CWS provides financial, technical and material assistance from the U.S., and through programs and our local partner organizations worldwide. Our areas of focus include hunger and malnutrition, protecting vulnerable women and children, assisting the displaced and promoting access to clean water. CWS core development work internationally supports an asset-based, contextual approach to community development. CWS is committed to employing its resources in a strategic and focused way to achieve the greatest positive improvement in people's lives in the areas where we work. The aim of our efforts is clear: to make a world where there is enough for all.
  2. What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?
    Our work is guided by our strategic plan, established every four years. Every global region has three goals with subsets, designed to benchmark improvement in our core areas of protecting women and children, promoting food security and access to clean water. In each region, CWS addresses three goals in its strategic plan: one to address chronic problems, one to handle crises that develop and another to enhance our partnerships. Goal 1 - Chronic Marginalized communities experiencing chronic hunger and poverty will achieve durable solutions that build peace and justice. Goal 2 - Crisis Communities experiencing crisis will achieve durable solutions that build or restore peace and justice. Goal 3 - Partnership Partnerships will be strengthened to build collaboration and solidarity.
  3. What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?
    Church World Service is an $83 million a year agency supported by individual donations, foundation and philanthropic grants, and government funding for contracted services. More than 1,000 employees around the world is the agency's best resource. One of the strongest resources we have is our relationship with community- and regional-level organizations we call local partners. These groups know best the needs of their communities and what resources are available. Church World Service provides funding, technical assistance and other supports with the aim to build capacity, so that our local partners can eventually take care of their own communities. Church World Service partners have given the agency high marks in independent assessments. Originally conceived as a grassroots effort, Church World Service makes use of faith-based and secular community networks to advocate on behalf of the world's poor, such as Geneva-based ACT Alliance. In advocacy on US and international platforms, CWS pushes for a world with greater compassion, peace and justice.
  4. How will they know if they are making progress?
    Most Significant Change monitoring is a monitoring methodology common among international nongovernmental organizations. The approach gives voice to those we serve as well as staff in evaluating our effectiveness. Every six months, stories and data are collected, analyzed by staff and put before our board for consideration. Each of the three points in our strategic plan contain subsets that lay out a benchmark for marking progress. The Most Significant Change stories collected are evaluated at the regional level first, with those selected as most exemplifying change passed on for review at the next, agency administration level. Stories are further evaluated and rated for their impact, until ultimately the agency's CEO and head of programs selects the stories presented to the board as examples of progress made. Numerical data are also collected, evaluated and often integrated into Most Significant Change stories as evidence of effectiveness.
  5. What have and haven't they accomplished so far?
    Numerically, Church World Service is achieving its goals. For example, in FY13 CWS water programs touched in some way at least 126,886 people in the last year in more than 300 communities. More than 127,000 found sustainable sources of food with CWS help in that time, and CWS resettled more than 5,000 refugees to the US from desperate situations. Risks are inherent in our work. As attacks on humanitarian actors rise, security is a paramount concern. Rising global food prices mean demand for CWS assistance also escalates. Competition for donated and government dollars falls at the same time as demands for humanitarian action is elevated by political, economic or environmental strife. Yet our approach is unique enough and vital enough to have long-lasting health and relevancy. We are grassroots at both ends- in funding our work from those with means, and in implementing our work at the most community-forward level. Working together with communities has been our hallmark for six decades. As long as there is a lack of access to clean water, sanitation, food, peace and justice, Church World Service will have a role to play.
Service Areas



CWS works in Asia, Africa, Latin America, the Caribbean, the Middle East, Eastern Europe, the Balkans and the U.S.

Additional Documents

Social Media


Funding Needs

Church World Service provides humanitarian assistance in three areas of focus: food security and nutrition, access to clean water and in programs that protect women and children. The focus is on sustainable programs that promote self-sufficiency. CWS also resettles refugees when displaced people can't return home.


American Institute of Philanthropy

Affiliations + Memberships

InterAction - Member



External Reviews


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Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

Fiscal year: Jul 01-Jun 30
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.

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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Church World Service Inc



Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2015, 2014 and 2013
  • Board Chair, Board Co-Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
Need the ability to download nonprofit data and more advanced search options? Consider a Premium or Pro Search subscription.

President and CEO

Rev. John L. McCullough


Rev. John L. McCullough is Executive Director of Church World Service, an international humanitarian relief, development, refugee assistance, and advocacy organization. His broad international experience includes pastorates in the U.S. and Kenya and leadership within the United Methodist Church's Board of Global Ministries, where he presented more than 1,150 persons for commissioning into mission service; administered a program that awarded assistance to more than 700 students around the world; and introduced numerous mission initiatives including Missioners of Hope and Volunteers for Africa. Rev. McCullough describes Church World Service and its mission as "a global ecumenical organization of Christian persons committed to the transformation of human society and preservation of the environment as an expression of Christ's life. CWS is called no less to be a prophetic voice and an agitating presence: a sign of compassion, a bulwark for justice, human rights, dignity, and a source of knowledge contributing to the healing of nations and the building of lasting peace." Rev. McCullough has led an ecumenical peacemaking delegation to West Africa; hosted historic consultations with African church leaders; and, co-chaired two Washington-based conferences, one on the crisis in Haitian migration and the other on the Korea crisis. Rev. McCullough makes his home in Montclair, New Jersey.



Rev. Earl D Trent Jr.

Florida Avenue Baptist Church


GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices. Self-reported by organization



Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?



Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?



Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?



Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?



Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?