Our
Story
Word & Deed began with a desire and calling to reach out to those in need as exemplified by the love of Jesus Christ.
Together Celebrating God’s Faithfulness

Watch how the Lord has been faithful and how our story has developed so far as we celebrate our 25 year anniversary.

Our Timeline
1994

Word & Deed North America begins as a fundraising arm for parent organization Woord en Daad in the Netherlands.

First Partnerships begin with Conviventia in Colombia and AMG in Guatemala through the Free Reformed Missions Committee.

1995
2000

Word & Deed USA establishes an office in Grand Rapids, Michigan, with charitable status being given in 2003.

Work in Ecuador begins in partnership with CRETE Theological Seminary facilitated by Fred and Arlene Jonkman’s mission work with Ecuador Missions.

2004
2005

Word & Deed responds to the relief needs of local fishermen after the Boxing Day Tsunami in Sri Lanka and India killed 227,000 people and devastated the livelihoods and homes of millions.

The first of many service teams venture to Gulfport, Mississippi, to help rebuild homes destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. This is done in partnership with the First Presbyterian Church of Gulfport (PCA).

2006
2006

The first annual Fall Dinner Tour is held. Our indigenous partners are invited as keynote speakers, providing an opportunity for them to share firsthand stories of the impact of Word & Deed supported projects to supporters in North America.

The first annual Lake-to-Lake Bike-a-thon is held along the Niagara Parkway in Ontario. To date, this Bike-a-thon has raised over $1,000,000 CAD for the Nakekela HIV/AIDS Clinic in South Africa. In 2020 this event was re-imagined and re-named the Coast-to-Coast Bike-a-thon and now includes participants across North America.

2007
2007

Hurricane Felix hits the Atlantic Coast of Nicaragua beginning relief efforts followed by a long-standing partnership in agricultural and economic development with Palabra y Hechos Nicaragua.

The first Business Group meetings take place in British Columbia and Ontario.

2008
2009

The first softball tournaments take place in Michigan and British Columbia.

Our digital presence grows with the launch of a Facebook page followed by profiles on Instagram (2017), YouTube (2019), and LinkedIn (2021).

2010
2010

The earthquake in Haiti kills 230,000 people and collapses the Adoration Christian School. Word & Deed rebuilds homes as part of their relief effort. The following year, the Adoration Christian Centre oversight committee, from the Canadian Reformed Churches, merges with Word & Deed.

Typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines where we, alongside the Reformed Congregationalist Churches, distributed items like clothing, food, Bibles, tents, and body bags.

2013
2013

The Children of Light schools in Indonesia merge with Word & Deed after growing in administrative complexity and in size since its beginning in 1998.

After completing the construction of a hospital in the Dominican Republic an ongoing partnership with the Sociedad Lucas is formed to assist with operational costs.

2015
2015

After a severe earthquake in Nepal, Word & Deed partners with the Evangelical Presbyterian Church of Nepal to distribute food to 300 families, to rebuild two churches, and to construct 50 new homes.

The first Giving Hope Christmas Catalogue was included with the Word & Deed Magazine, allowing supporters to choose specific gifts at various values to provide for the particular needs of our partners.

2015
2015

A partnership agreement is signed with Reformed Presbyterian Global Missions—the global missions arms of the Reformed Presbyterian Churches of North America—which paves the way for Word & Deed to support the Cush4Christ project in South Sudan.

In response to the refugee crisis in the Middle East, Word & Deed began sending $10,000 USD each month to assist the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Churches in meeting the food crisis for up to 400 refugee families each month.

2017
2017

Word & Deed responds to drought in Tanzania by providing bags of corn, rice, and beans to 870 families, inaugurating a partnership with the Mwanza Bible Institute.

A partnership is formed with Esperance (Hope) Haiti, an organization which offers micro-loans to hundreds of small business owners in southern Haiti still reeling from the devastation caused by Hurricane Matthew (2016).

2018
2019

Word & Deed celebrates God’s Faithfulness for 25 years of ministering to the spiritual and physical needs of many around the world.

COVID-19 causes annual project visits to our partners to be cancelled and fundraisers to go virtual. Over $1,000,000 CAD / $750,000 USD in food and medical relief is provided through many partners around the world.

2020
Our History In-Depth

Beginning in Canada in 1994, Word & Deed became the North American fundraising arm of the Dutch-based organisation Woord En Daad. With a small board, one employee, and a budget of $44,000 CAD, the calling to meet both spiritual and physical needs of partners around the world began. After experiencing initial growth and establishing proper oversight, we received Charitable status in Canada and became and separate organization from that of our parent in the Netherlands. Our mission and vision have remained the same, and over the years many like-minded Reformed Christians have joined this ministry by supporting it financially and by serving on the board and various committees.

In 1995, partnerships formed with Corporación Dios es Amor (now called Conviventia) in Colombia and with AMG (Advancing the Ministries of the Gospel) in Guatemala that have continually been strengthened and expanded upon. The Child Sponsorship Program commenced in these countries, and it has grown with both partners over the years.

On November 1, 2000, Word & Deed USA submitted their Articles of Incorporation to be recognized as a legal entity; in 2003 they gained full charitable status in the United States. Both the Canadian and American entities operate together in name, in purpose, and in methodology.

In 2004, a partnership began in Ecuador with a theological study center alongside Miami International Seminary (known as MINTS). Fred and Arlene Jonkman facilitated this initial partnership which today focuses on childhood education, medical assistance, and biblical education. In 2008, a child sponsorship program began supporting 100 children in the neighborhood of Cesar Proaño. Today, this program supports over 300 children in three different neighbourhoods in Quininde.

In December 2004, the Boxing Day Tsunami (triggered by a 9.1 magnitude earthquake in the Indian Ocean) struck Sri Lanka, killing 227,000 people. In early 2005, Word & Deed focused initially on responding to the need for immediate relief in the form of food, shelter, and clothing, and then shifted to rebuilding homes and assisting fishing families purchase nets and boats to rebuild their livelihoods.

In April 2006, the first of several service teams depart for Gulfport, Mississippi, to help repair homes after Hurricane Katrina devastated the area. Over the next year, 200 Word & Deed volunteers participated in home reconstruction in the area in partnership with the First Presbyterian Church of Gulfport (PCA).

In November 2006, the first annual Fall Dinner Tour is held. Our indigenous partners are invited as keynote speakers, providing an opportunity for them to share firsthand stories of the impact of Word & Deed supported projects to supporters in North America.

In June 2007, first annual Lake-to-Lake Bike-a-thon is held in Niagara, Ontario, with 225 participants raising $34,000 CAD for the Nakekela HIV/AIDS Clinic in South Africa. Since then, over $1,000,000 CAD has been raised through this annual event. (In 2020 this event was re-imagined and re-named the Coast-to-Coast Bike-a-thon and now includes participants across North America.) Our partnership with the Nakekela Clinic began in 2005. Expansions to their facilities were added in 2007, 2009, and 2013.

In September 2007, Hurricane Felix hits the Atlantic Coast of Nicaragua beginning relief efforts followed by a long-standing partnership with Palabra y Hechos Nicaragua. Palabra y Hechos continues to focus on agricultural development which includes a micro-loans program.

In April 2008, the first Business Group meetings take place in British Columbia and Ontario.

In June 2009, the first softball tournaments take place in Michigan and British Columbia.

In 2010, our digital presence grows with the launch of a Facebook page followed by profiles on Instagram (2017), YouTube (2019), and LinkedIn (2021).

In January 2010, a devastating earthquake kills 230,000 people in Haiti and collapses the Adoration Christian School. By God’s grace, all but two people from the school community were spared and in the subsequent years over $1,000,000 of support was raised to help rebuild homes and to relocate the school. The following year, the Adoration Christian Centre oversight committee, from the Canadian Reformed Churches, merges with Word & Deed.

In 2013, the Children of Light schools in Indonesia merge with Word & Deed after growing in administrative complexity and in size since its beginning in 1998.

In November 2013, Typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines causing over 5,000 deaths and affecting millions. Initially working alongside the Reformed Congregationalist Churches, relief items like clothing, food, bibles, tents, and body bags were distributed. Since then we have been drawn closer to working with Student Missionary Outreach in areas such as home building, community center projects, and student evangelistic outreach.

In 2015, a partnership agreement is signed with Reformed Presbyterian Global Missions—the global missions arms of the Reformed Presbyterian of North America—which paves the way for Word & Deed to support the Cush4Christ project in South Sudan. The first step taken is to provide funds to construct a four-classroom building for the Christian school.

In March 2015, the hospital run by Dr. Silvia and Samuel Martinez in the Dominican Republic completes its final phase of construction after many service team trips from Canada. Word & Deed assisted with the final materials needed for construction and an ongoing partnership began to assist with operational costs.

In April 2015, a severe earthquake hit Nepal. Word & Deed partners with the Evangelical Presbyterian Church of Nepal, alongside Pastor Anup Hiwale (graduate of Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary), to distribute food aid to 300 families, to rebuild two churches, and to construction 50 new homes.

In December 2015, the first Giving Hope Christmas Catalogue was included with the Word & Deed Magazine, allowing supporters to choose specific gifts at various values to provide for the particular needs of our partners.

In 2017, in response to the refugee crisis in the Middle East, Word & Deed began sending $10,000 USD each month to assist the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Churches in meeting the food crisis for up to 400 refugee families each month.

In April 2017, Word & Deed responded to the severe drought in Tanzania with a total of $60,000 USD to provide bags of corn, rice, and beans to 870 families. This inaugurated a relationship with the Mwanza Bible Institute and Joseph Marwa (a past graduate of Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary) which is still supported through one-time projects as needed.

In 2018, a partnership is formed with Esperance (Hope) Haiti, an organization which offers micro-loans to hundreds of small business owners still reeling from the devastation caused by Hurricane Matthew on the southern tip of Haiti (2016). Initially, Word & Deed provided multiple installments of $250,000 USD to what s now a self-funded micro-loan program serving business owners in the central and southern regions of Haiti.

In April 2019, we celebrated God’s faithfulness over the past 25 years to Word & Deed. The fall issue of Word & Deed Magazine was a reflection on the relationships formed, the growth experienced, and the faithfulness of the Lord over the years. We celebrated throughout the Fall Dinner Tour, hosting multiple speakers at events located across Canada and the United States.

In 2020, Word & Deed has sent over $500,000 CAD / $375,000 USD for COVID-19 food relief to 12 countries due to the lockdowns, job instability, and poor global food economies.

Due to Canadian and American gathering restrictions, many fundraisers went virtual, were broken into smaller groups, or could not happen entirely.

The Word & Deed Board of Directors expresses a desire to work in areas where there are more people groups unreached by the Gospel, including regions experiencing heavy persecution.

More About
Word & Deed
Our Approach
Our Team
“Praise God for what He is doing to expand Christian education and the opportunity to witness for Christ among the Muslims in Indonesia. We pray that He will continue to use us as a tool to bring more people to Christ and to grow his church in this nation.”
Director of Children of Light, Indonesia
“I love the education material that Word & Deed publishes and shares. It is a wonderful way for my 7th-grade geography students to learn the history of a country, but also to learn about the creativity of God through different cultures.”
Mrs. S Soerens, Grade 7 teacher
“We can only say thanks, because without a doubt, the Family Protection Team arrived at the right time. We felt listened to, understood, and above all we were able to recognize that God is the basis of our home. With Him restoration becomes complete and we can be a happy family.”
Beneficiary family of the Family Protection Program, Colombia

“I would like to thank the supporters of the mission for the help that they bring into my life. I love the Bible studies and learning the stories of the Bible. The groups from Canada and the USA are such a blessing and we love the games that they teach us and the Bible crafts that we do. I have been in this project for four years now and I love the Word of God… Jesus is the only hope that I have.”

Student from the Afterschool Program in Ecuador
“When I was in Grade 4, I heard a presentation about the Adoration School in Haiti. That made me think about the children of my age that don’t have the privilege of going to school as I do. The question came into my mind how to raise money for them…. Then in the summer of 2020, I started my HJK Landscaping Service and went to my neighbors and worked for them. My business worked out well, so I decided to put away 10 percent of all the money I received and give it to the Adoration School in Haiti.”
H Klaver, Elementary school student
“This past year Word & Deed took the initiative to work out a very important project that would place theology books in the hands of pastors across Latin America… I wish to congratulate Word & Deed for their sensitivity to such fundamental needs in the church of Latin America. Good theology will produce healthy churches. We need to always work on the foundations. On behalf of CLIR, we look forward to continued cooperation in the future.”
Rev. Bill Green, Executive Secretary for CLIR, Costa Rica
“In school, I have been taught the Word of God, which is very important to my life and that of my family. I feel happy because the teachers at La Palabra treat me very well.”
4th Grade student from La Palabra Christian School, Guatemala
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