A little over six weeks ago, I had the honor of participating in a monumental milestone for EQUIP, the non-profit organization I founded in 1996 to train and mobilize leaders worldwide.
Our first training session on the Biblical principles of leadership was held in Kota, India, in 1997. Every year since then, our volunteer Associate Trainers have continued to equip leaders in countries in every part of the world. The numbers grew every year. We trained in dozens of countries, then over a hundred, until we were fast approaching the milestone of having trained leaders in every nation on earth.
That’s why, on June 25, we were thrilled to be in Fiji to conduct a training for leaders from the nation of Kiribati, our final nation. In less than ten years, we have had the privilege of training leaders in 196 different nations – what many experts consider the total number of nations in the world.
What a historic day it was in the beautiful Republic of the Fiji Islands. In the city of Suva, key leaders from Kiribati joined us, along with 1,500 leaders from Fiji, for leadership training and celebration. It was such an honor to mark the occasion with many members of my team and my entire family.
Our journey from Kota to Kiribati has been amazing – involving generous donors, faithful partners, and hundreds of volunteer associate trainers, who have taken more than 4,500 trips and flown over 45 million miles to train leaders. The Associate Trainers alone have invested at least $50 million in training over 6 million leaders in all 196 nations on earth.
And now we have turned a page in the EQUIP story, as we focus intentionally on challenging and equipping trained leaders to be transformational leaders. Through our new Salt and Light movement, we believe there is potential for millions of lives in scores of nations to be transformed.
Salt and Light is a new free resource for churches that provides everything they need to help their people add value to others in their community. If you’re a church leader, you can get more information on this free resource and everything else that EQUIP has been doing at iequip.org.
When my brother Larry and I founded EQUIP, we did so because we wanted to make a difference. But we really had no idea what was in store for us and the organization. Now that we’ve reached what had seemed like an impossible goal, we’re excited to see what happens next.