Founder Don Campbell and President Marcus Mennenga talk about how Feeding Children Everywhere will literally Change This World.
- Why are Feeding Children Everywhere and Change This World merging?
- So, Why Didn’t You Do This Sooner?
- What Will The Name Of The New Organization Be, And Where Will You Be Located?
- What Does This Mean For Your Supporters?
- Is Everything Official?
- How Far Back Does The Relationship Between Your Two Organizations Go?
- What Can You Do Together That You Couldn’t Do On Your Own?
- What Are The Unique Strengths That Each Organization Brings To The Table?
- How Will You Make A Difference That Lasts Beyond One Meal?
- So, The Goal Of Feeding Children Everywhere Is Literally To Change This World?
Q. Why are Feeding Children Everywhere and Change This World merging?
Marcus (Change This World): Simply put, we can accomplish more together than we ever could have dreamed on our own. We were literally right down the street from one another … less than a mile apart. I would drive by Feeding Children Everywhere on my way to Change This World. I would get together with Don a few times a year. Both of us would scratch our heads, then we would look at each other and say, “Why are we separate?” Basically, we kept having the same conversation over and over again, and finally we realized it made zero sense to be apart.
Don (Feeding Children Everywhere): Exactly! The fact is, we need each other. Feeding Children Everywhere has focused mostly on feeding people in the U.S. And Change This World has focused mostly on international relief. Both have been successful. We saw that if we combined our efforts, we could multiply our effectiveness. And that’s what we’re seeing—that one plus one equals exponentially more.
Q. So, why didn’t you do this sooner?
Don: Good question! It seems so obvious now, but the short answer is the timing needed to be right.
Marcus: Absolutely. It’s like a marriage—we’re better because each organization brings unique perspectives and experiences to the partnership.
Q. What will the name of the new organization be, and where will you be located?
Marcus: It’s Feeding Children Everywhere, and both of our teams are now working out of FCE’s awesome facility in Longwood, Florida. We can do a whole lot more from one place, and there’s room to grow! In fact, we added more than 8,000 feet shortly before we merged Change This World into Feeding Children Everywhere.
Don: We’re hoping this will become the “new normal” for nonprofits. There are so many of us around the world successfully doing the same thing. Why not cut costs and put it back into people? We hope other organizations will join forces and multiply their effectiveness.
Q. What does this mean for your supporters?
Marcus: Bottom line …. every dollar is going to go a lot further and help more people than ever before. The same dollar does so much more now.
Don: Between the two organizations, we’ve mobilized over 200,000 volunteers and packaged over 40 million meals in less than five years. We believe that we will reach 100 million meals in the next 24 months alone! That’s the multiplication we’re seeing.
Q. Is everything official?
Don: Yes. Both boards have unanimously agreed that this is a good decision. We didn’t have one “nay” vote.
Q. How far back does the relationship between your two organizations go?
Marcus: A long time! Don and I actually “received our callings” around the same time. He was doing roofing and construction, and I was in finance. We simultaneously came to the realization that we were called to do this vocationally.
Don: We went through the process of letting go of our careers, and really put everything on the line to create two separate organizations: One ended up focusing mostly on local hunger, the other on international hunger. It’s awesome to see how things have come full circle the way they have.
Q. What can you do together that you couldn’t do on your own?
Marcus: I think we can better serve those who want to make a difference—as a family, as a company, as a faith community—by providing one great option instead of two.
One business owner I know was planning separate events with both organizations. Originally, his goal was to provide a million meals over the next 10 years. After we told him we were joining forces, he came back and said, “I really believe we’re supposed to do 10 million meals in the next 10 years.” That didn’t come to him until he heard the story of our coming together. He said, “This sparks something so much bigger for me.”
Q. What are the unique strengths that each organization brings to the table?
Marcus: Feeding Children Everywhere has big vision! They see exactly where we need to go. Change This World knows how to get there. Don and his team are good at pioneering, and we’re good at planting. We complement one another, both organizationally and personally.
Q. How will you make a difference that lasts beyond one meal?
Don: Most of the time, there are orphanages and schools attached to what we do. We provide the food, they provide the education. And an education changes everything.
If a school can’t feed their kids daily, we partner with them by supplying food. Now, they can use their sponsorship dollars to take on more students. We have a partner school in Haiti that’s grown from 250 kids to 850 kids by working with us in this way.
Marcus: The goal is to reach young people before they need to be rescued—providing them with education, training and an opportunity to break the cycle of hopelessness and poverty.
Food equals so much more than a meal. In countries like Haiti, Honduras and Nicaragua, kids who ordinarily would not go to school are coming because they’re getting a free meal. An education gives them whole new opportunities that they wouldn’t have had otherwise. Our goal in providing nutritious meals is to help transform communities and, eventually, entire nations.
Q. So, the goal of feeding children everywhere is literally to change this world?
Don: That’s exactly right! Several of the countries where we’re working are on the verge of transformation. When you pack meals with Feeding Children Everywhere, you’re part of a much larger movement that is changing the world.
Marcus: Each meal delivers the ingredients needed to sustain life, and by partnering with strategic organizations the food also opens doors for education, the ability to plan for the future and the strength to see it realized.