Now that we have our full slate of Sponsored Causes set for 2018-2019 I wanted to take a moment and highlight what a PFM Sponsored Cause is, as well as who we have chosen and why they were selected.
Here at Play For More Sports we are passionate about using the platform of sports to promote and support organizations that are effecting positive change in the world. Our goal is to inspire athletes all over the world to use their competitive pursuits to support and promote the causes they are personally passionate about. As an organization we feel the best way to do that is to put our money where our mouth is and lead by example. That is where our Sponsored Causes come in.
Sponsored Causes are non profit organizations that we have chosen to directly support with our fundraising and marketing efforts. While PFM is technically a for profit entity we don't exist to make anyone rich. None of our staff take a salary and nearly all of our profits go directly to our Sponsored Causes. Every purchase that is made in our apparel and gear shop will have 40% of the purchase price donated to the organizations that we support (10% each).
Additionally we will be using our social media accounts to promote these organizations by sharing their posts and updates as well as generating some of our content.
So how did we choose our partners?
You don't have to look very hard in the world today to find hurting people or problems that need solved. There are countless wonderful organizations out there making a difference and finding solutions. We would love to be able to promote and support every great non profit and we fully encourage our partner athletes to give to the charities that they personally connect with. We also want to be able to make a real impact on the charities we work with and as a new and growing business we can only effectively promote and support a few at a time.
With so many options we had to develop some criteria to narrow our search. We identified the needs that we see in the world that we as a staff are most passionate about working to solve.
To be considered as a Sponsored Cause an organization needs to be working towards one or more of these goals:
1. Spreading of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and expanding the Kingdom of God here on Earth
2. Sustainably uplifting the poor
3. Freeing the oppressed and the exploited
4. Promoting physical, mental, emotional and spiritual healing
Here at PFM we are unashamedly driven by our faith in God and the salvation offered through Jesus. His love for us and the desire to share that love with others through our passion for sports is motivation behind everything we do.
(We'll get into that in more detail in another post but for now don't worry. We won't be preaching at you anytime soon and we will always welcome anyone who loves sports or wants to make the world a better place.)
These criteria were born out of our desire to live out what Jesus called to 2 greatest commandments: to love God and love people.
While we as an organization are not evangelistic in nature we do desire to support causes that preach the gospel as part of their work or are motivated to their work by similar spiritual convictions.
An organization does not need to be faith based in order to be considered for our support but we will show a strong preference toward organizations that are because we don't simply want to improve quality of people's lives here and now but we also want to see their souls saved for eternity.
That being said we also strongly prefer organizations that do both to those that are purely evangelistic. There is a consistent message throughout the Bible that God cares less about how religious you are and more about how you treat those around you especially those in need or who can't stand up for themselves.
We also feel it is important to emphasize supporting organizations that are providing solutions that are sustainable. We want to give to causes that are offering a "hand up" allowing people to rise above their circumstances rather that those that provide "hand outs" that meet only immediate needs. While the second is often necessary and still a good thing to do we want to invest in work that creates lasting life change.
We also want to support causes that directly benefits individual people. While we see great value in causes that are focused on the environment, medical research, wildlife preservation/animal cruelty, and many other worthy causes we have chosen to invest in work that tangibly improves the lives of people in need.
Well after that incredibly long introduction I want to briefly introduce you to each of our 4 Sponsored Causes and how they meet these criteria.
Rapha House works to end human trafficking around the world and primarily in Southeast Asia.
Rapha is a Hebrew word for healing which is the heartbeat of their mission.
It is not enough to rescue someone out of their oppressive circumstances which is why Rahpa House operates a network of safe houses that not only provide for the victims physical needs but also counseling to begin to heal to emotional trauma they have experienced.
Poverty is often times the root cause as children and young women are lured in by traffickers with the promise of a good job or are outright sold by families that can no longer afford to care for them.
In response Rapha House ensures that every survivor has access to an education and a variety of vocational training such as sewing, cosmetology and culinary arts. You can even buy products created in Rapha House safe houses here!
Most importantly as Rapha House is motivated to their work by their love for God and the survivors have the opportunity to experience the hope, healing and love found in the message of Jesus.
Find out more about Rapha House here!
Food For The Hungry has the audacious goal of ending all forms of poverty worldwide. They are motivated by their Christian belief that God values each and every individual on the planet and therefore so should we.
This focus on the individual is what breaks a daunting problem like global poverty down into workable solutions. They may not be able to serve every person in poverty all at once but by focusing and uplifting one person, one family, one community at a time they can begin to make real progress towards a poverty free world.
FH is active in over 20 countries globally and provides these poverty stricken communities with resources like clean water, food, medical aid, and education. However their work is much more than the provision of resources, they focus on giving communities the tools to raise themselves out of poverty. Their projects are staffed by people from that country. Each solution is tailored to that community's specific situation and they invite community members to be part of implementing their programs and provide them with the knowledge and training continue them once FH leaves.
That is an important part of FH's goal. They desire to graduate communities out of extreme poverty to a point where they can provide fulfilling lives for themselves and no longer need FH's aid.
You can find our more about FH here.
FH also has a long recognized the impact that the platform of sports can have. Find our more about their other athlete partnerships here!
Water.org dedicated to finding innovative ways to solve the global water crisis.
Hundreds of millions of people all over the world lack access to clean water and billions of people lack access to proper sanitation. Many of these people must travel longs distances to find water for their families or wait in long lines to pay
exorbitant prices demanded by water merchants. This takes women and children out of school or work, locking them in a cycle of poverty they cannot escape.
Many of these families could obtain a water tap or toilet in their own home for a fraction of their annual water costs. However they lack the resources to pay for it upfront themselves.
That is where Water.org's Water Credit program comes in. They offer affordable financing to these families through microloans, usually under $100. This provides them the solutions they need with the ability to pay for it over time and maintains their dignity by allowing them to provide for themselves.
Their Water Credit loans have an over 99% repayment rate and every loan that is repaid represents another family that can be helped, multiplying the effect your money can have!
Learn more about Water Credit here.
With the money and time saved by having clean water solutions in their own home these families are free to pursue an education or work to earn a living and pull themselves out of poverty by improving their own situation.
Learn more about Water.org here!
Compassion International lives out their faith in Jesus by providing hope for children in poverty through holistic child development, meeting their spiritual, physical, social and economic needs.
Jesus Christ is the core of their ministry. His life and teaching shape their programs. It guides how they love people, respect communities and cooperate with nations. They teach God’s Word in their centers but do not require any child to become a follower of Jesus. Jesus welcomed everyone, and they do too.
Compassion's programs are funded mainly through child sponsorship. Donors are connected to a specific child in one of Compassion centers and are encouraged to build a relationship with their child through prayer and letter writing. This deepens the level of personal investment for the donor as they are not just giving money to an organization but are providing for a specific person and profoundly impacts the child as they know someone loves and cares for them enough to provide for them.
You can sponsor a child here!
At any given time there are thousands of children in Compassion's programs that are waiting for sponsors. We have chosen to give to the Unsponsored Children's Fund to help provide for them as they wait on permanent sponsors.
Find out more about Compassion here.
We are proud to stand with each of these organizations as they work to make the would a better place. We would love for you to join us in supporting them as well whether by giving to them directly, committing to support them with your own athletic pursuits or by shopping in our store! Remember 40% of all our sales go directly to these causes (10% each)!
Stay tuned for more exciting announcement in the near future!