We believe that community development work is most effective when its vision reaches beyond eradicating material poverty. Our goal is to create sustainable, grassroots development that releases individual potential and promotes the collective good. Through assisting people to identify and live up to their highest values, the fundamental causes of social ills are rooted out. Prejudice, ignorance, and lack of trustworthiness give way to cooperative action, equality, mutual respect and moral leadership. We are drawing on worldwide experience that demonstrates that truly sustained community well-being is created when universal principles are matched with sound business practices. Principles that guide our work include:
Unity -- As people become fully conscious of their interconnectedness, they are able to turn away from longstanding patterns of conflict, and work towards common solutions to social and economic problems.
Justice and Self-Determination -- People participate in improving the quality of their own lives through a process of collective decision-making guided by the principle of justice. Consultation helps people define and solve their own problems, participate in improving the quality of their lives, and ultimately to become self-sufficient.
Equality of the Sexes -- Prosperity cannot be achieved without equal participation of women and men in the transformation of society.
Trustworthiness and Moral Leadership -- Leaders must view themselves as servants of the common good, and be worthy role models.
Collaboration between Science and Religion -- Successful development will result equally from the contributions of scientific knowledge, sound business practices and spiritual principles.
"We must now highly resolve to arise and lay hold of all those instrumentalities that promote the peace and well-being and happiness, the knowledge, culture and industry, the dignity, value and station, of the entire human race." - 'Abdu'l-Bahá