(Adapted from section 8 of chapter 1 of A Day of Hope)
Much of the work we do as volunteers with A Day of Hope stems from our core values. Core Values are something that my mentor Steve Elliott, has spent a lot of time coaching me on.
Let me be clear that as you read these core values, you shouldn’t think that A Day of Hope automatically has all of them accomplished already. Core values are a description of who we are and what we hope to become in the future. So as you read, realize that we might not be there yet, but we are working towards them.
- Godliness – We vow to honor and serve God in all the work that we do. We are here as His servants to do His will, not our own.
- Integrity: In it’s simplest form, we are a team of people who say what we do (words) and do what we say (actions). Integrity is the outward appearance of our pure heart that allows us to have good judgment and to make correct decisions.
- Love: We love people in all walks of life. Whether it’s a homeless person, a co-worker, or someone who has wronged us, we will love and show compassion to them because we never know what that person has had to endure.
- Servanthood: We know that a true leader takes the lowest rank and acts as a servant to all. We commit to focus our time and energy to serving the needs of others to help them improve their lives.
- Relevancy: To truly serve people in a way that creates long lasting changes, we must serve people in a way which is relevant to them and meets their needs. This is a tough task that requires us to listen to their needs and to be in touch with reality.
- Humility: Humility reminds us that we’re fortunate to have what we have and to do what we do. It allows us to do the work that we do with a pure heart and pure motives to help people who need it.
- Idea Thinking: We understand how new ideas can help us serve people in new, relevant ways. Our good thinking helps us to determine if we want to implement those ideas, it helps us to evaluate their effectiveness, and it allows us to grow and learn from them.
- Stewardship/Effectiveness: We will always do our best with the limited resources of time, energy, people, and money that we might have to do our work. We will focus on using our resources for high priority activities that help people the most.
- Growth: Growth is a daily process that takes time and effort to learn from both our successes and failures. But this time and effort dedicated to grow over long periods of time allows us to continue to serve more people in relevant ways that create lasting changes in their lives.
- Persistence: Our persistence allows us to continue doing our work even if we are not seeing any positive results. Our persistence allows greater change to happen in others because they know that we’re working to serve them for their benefit, not our own.
- Teamwork: By working as a team we are able to utilize our strengths and talents in ways that we cannot on our own. Each person brings his own unique set of strengths and talents, and our commitment to teamwork allows those strengths and talents to be used to serve and help people.
- Multiplication: Multiplication of our efforts to serve and help others comes from working as a team, by learning and growing through our work, and from our humility as servants. The accumulation of results from all of these things makes the results of the future efforts much greater.
As you read these core values, try to think about what you might like to use to guide your program.
Having some simple values such as these will be helpful as you make decisions and manage your operations.
If after reading this book you feel that you have a clear picture of A Day of Hope and would like to lead a project in your community, I suggest that you take some time alone or with some possible partners to create some core values for your program. We have twelve core values for A Day of Hope, but you can have seven, three, fifteen, or just one. The act of sitting down to think about the important core values of your program will make a big difference in your success. Since the core values you create might be the foundation of your program, they are a large part of a very complex operation.