Our Story

We Are Meant To Be In Community

At Accord Network we cultivate a community where Christ-centered organizations, churches, and individuals leverage their combined learning to achieve the best in relief and development. 

Our members help each other reach their full potential by operating in community—sharing knowledge, skills, and support with one another. Our members are not limited to their own learning curve—they have ready access to the collective knowledge of 110,000 employees that collectively leverage over $5 billion of resources annually. 

Accomplishments

GIK standards — Accord Network’s Gifts-in-Kind standards became the “first” among the NGO community and have been referenced by InterAction, USAID, and the IRS.

Accord Alliances — Our members band together to facilitate learning and collaboration through alliances. Current alliances include the Gifts-in-Kind Alliance, Accord WASH (Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene) Alliance, Accord Advocacy Alliance, and the Accord Research Alliance.

Annual Learning Events —We host Executive Retreats and the annual OneAccord Forum.

Grant collaboration — More than a dozen of our members came together to compete for HIV/AIDS grants under PEPFAR. By combining their strengths and resources, the collaboration and its members secured more than $40 million in grants from USAID.

HIV/AIDS Alliance — Between 2003 and 2010, more than a dozen of our members came together to compete for HIV/AIDS grants under PEPFAR.  By combining their strengths and resources, the collaboration and its members secured more than $40 million in grants from USAID.

Information sharing, conference calls, and webinars — We share news on pertinent political developments, inform members of upcoming webinars and conference calls on issues (e.g., hiring rights, evidence-based programming, etc.), and create space for lateral learning.

Publications — With a history of influential publications, including Creation Care, What’s Christian about Christian Relief and Development?, and Principles of Development, Accord recently launched a journal titled Christian Relief, Development, and Advocacy to facilitate vigorous debate on Christ-centered solutions to poverty.

Co-Mission — We participated in the “CoMission” with 85 Christian agencies working to provide relief, development Christian witness in Russian schools following the fall of the Iron Curtain (1993-2001).

Origins of Accord Network

Four decades ago, the president of Food for the Hungry sought to respond to disasters in Guatemala and Bangladesh but instead found himself waiting in line at foreign ministry offices. It was suggested that the Christian organizations could serve more effectively if they worked together.

He returned to the U.S. resolved to start a community of “like-minded organizations.” Twelve agencies—including MAP, World Vision, World Concern, MAF, and World Relief—first met in 1977 in Wheaton, IL. . They wanted to replace the prevailing feeling of competitiveness between them with a feeling of collaboration among them. According to one of the participants, “We wanted to be a fraternity, a place to fellowship, to see each other as colleagues, and to profit by getting together.”

And Accord Network was born. They invited additional agencies that were:

  • Christ-focused
  • Professionally and fiducially responsible
  • Relief and development-focused

Their vision was that “all Christian relief and development professionals and agencies base their initiatives on biblical principles and work to re-engage the Church in holistic ministry among the poor and needy.” The network incorporated in 1978 as AERDO (The Association of Evangelical Relief and Development Organizations). In 2010, the membership voted to change the name to Accord Network.

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