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Tearfund logo.png
Founded 1968
Founder George Hoffman, of the Evangelical Alliance
Type Christian charity
Registration no. 265464 (England & Wales) SC037624 (Scotland)
Slogan Following Jesus where the need is greatest
Mission Following Jesus where need is greatest, working through local churches to unlock people's potential and helping them to discover that the answer to poverty is within themselves.
Website http://www.tearfund.org/

Tearfund is a Christian relief and development agency based in the United Kingdom which has worked in over 50 countries. Tearfund primarily focuses on supporting those in poverty and providing disaster relief for disadvantaged communities.


The charity organization was created by of the Evangelical Alliance (EA). The organization was originally named The Evangelical Alliance Relief Fund Committee,[1]:17 now abbreviated to TEAR Fund. The Evangelical Refugee Fund was created by the United Nations. The fund was initially headed by George Hoffman.[1]:21 On March 6, 1973, Tearfund was registered as a charity.[1]:21

In January 1969, Cliff Richard gave two fund-raising concerts for Tearfund at London's Royal Albert Hall,[1]:29 and has served as both Tearfund's Vice President and President.[2] In 2009 Richard donated the proceeds of his first 50th-anniversary concert in Wembley Arena to Tearfund.[3]

Tearfund Ireland was launched as an independent charity and now works meticulously with Tearfund UK as a sister organization.


In 1972, Tearfund worked overseas for the first time. After sending nurses to flood-stricken Bangladesh to work with Interserve, the nurses spent 6-24 months working in hospitals, clinics, and feeding camps.[1]:62

In 1994, Tearfund set up a Disaster Response Unit, now called the Disaster Management Team.[1]:65–66 The first disaster responded to was the aftermath of the Rwandan genocide.

Tearfund engages in direct operational work (via its Disaster Management Unit) and in development work partnering with local Christian groups.[1]:92

By 2006, Tearfund was working with 297 partners, many of them church-based groups, in a total of 565 projects.[1]:164

In 2006–2007, Tearfund gave £9 million to partner groups working in emergencies.[1]:73

By 2006–2007, Tearfund had teams caring for people affected by conflicts and natural disasters in Afghanistan, Burundi, Darfur, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Indonesia, Kenya, Liberia, Pakistan, the Philippines, Somalia, and South Sudan.[1]:68

Since 2014, Tearfund has supported Giving Tuesday.[4]


In 2000, four Tearfund staff were kidnapped whilst performing charity work in Sierra Leone. They were freed after four days but robbed of all their possessions.[5]


Tearfund produces a grassroots development magazine named Footsteps in seven languages. Footsteps have a print run of 50,000.[1]:108

Tearfund produced a booklet entitled Don't Forget Your Ethics which advises people how to travel in both an eco-friendly and fair trade manner.[6][7][8]

Tearfund Ireland works with a small number of the least developed countries in Asia and Africa; Cambodia, Ethiopia, Haiti, Iraq, Lebanon, Malawi, Myanmar, Nepal, Philippines, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Tanzania, Uganda and Zimbabwe.



In 1997, Tearfund started a full-scale program to equip supporters for campaigning on poverty issues biblically called "Global Action Network". [1]:183

In 2014, Tearfund partnered with Nvader, a New Zealand-based charity working to free women and children from sex trafficking.[9][10]

Tearfund is a member organization of several coalitions, including:

Inspired individuals[edit]

In 2008, Tearfund piloted what they called the "Inspired Individuals Initiative". It seeks to identify and support agents who have unique visions with the potential to transform the lives of millions living in poverty.

Tearfund’s support for these "Inspired Individuals" is threefold:

  • Each individual is paid a stipend for a period of three years.
  • Tearfund provides a network of like-minded people to encourage and challenge.
  • A support program is offered.[11]

Kelvin Mwikya is a member of the initiative.

References list[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Hollow, Mike Roch (2008). A Future And A Hope. Oxford, UK: Monarch Books. ISBN 978-1-85424-865-7. 
  2. ^ "TV JILL'S MERCY SQUAD KILLED". Sunday Mirror. November 14, 1999. 
  3. ^ Radoslav, Loki (2011). Tearfund. Pon Press. ISBN 6137968545. 
  4. ^ "Giving Tuesday". Tearfund. August 5, 2001. Retrieved November 18, 2015. 
  5. ^ "Sierra Leone hostages". The Times. August 31, 2000. 
  6. ^ "Before you go the essential checklist Where can you find out about travel companies who are committed to sustainable tourism at home and abroad? Here are some good starting points". Sunday Telegraph. August 5, 2001. 
  7. ^ Amy Barry (July 22, 2000). "Ten commandments for tourists". The Times. 
  8. ^ Guardian Travel Pages, Pg. 19 (July 8, 2000). "Travel: In brief: Ethics abroad". The Guardian. 
  9. ^ "Integral Alliance :: Tearfund New Zealand Collaborating to Address Human-trafficking". www.integralalliance.org. Retrieved 2017-03-28. 
  10. ^ "Charity: Women, kids used as sex slaves". Stuff.co.nz. 2014-02-27. Retrieved 2017-03-28. 
  11. ^ Tear Fund Inspired Individuals[permanent dead link]

External links[edit]