WORLD readers during the past year nominated 200 small, Christian groups that offer challenging, personal, and spiritual help. Through internet research and phone interviews we eventually narrowed the field to 10 contenders, two from each of our regions: Northeast, Southeast, Northwest, Southwest, and International. We then sent WORLD magazine and podcast reporters on a 3,000-mile road trip by car to eyeball the domestic contenders, while WORLD editor in chief Marvin Olasky and his wife, Susan, visited international prospects. The ministry profiles linked to below display our results.

Please read the profiles and then vote for whichever of the Final Five moves you the most. All are worthy. Voting ends Friday, Sept. 6, and we’ll announce the winner the following week. WORLD will give the overall winner $10,000 and the regional winners $2,000 each, but the biggest prize is publicity and increased credibility.


VOTE


Regional winners

 

Southeast


Scarlet Hope in Louisville, Ky.

Hope in the darkest places
Rachelle Starr and her friends help women emerge from the sex industry
by Charissa Koh

Listen to WORLD Radio’s profile
Southeast

 

Southwest


Little Light Christian School in Oklahoma City

Letting them shine
Little Light Christian School’s mission is to love the children of prisoners—but traumatic backgrounds make the work a marathon of trusting God
by Charissa Koh

Listen to WORLD Radio’s profile
Southwest

 

International


20schemes in Edinburgh, Scotland

Scheming for God
How Scotland’s 20schemes ministry works in hard places to show the poor and addicted the riches of new life in Christ
by Marvin Olasky

Listen to WORLD Radio’s profile
International

 

Northwest


Watered Gardens in Joplin, Mo.

Forge fires and watered gardens
At a gospel rescue mission, men have a chance to escape the spiral of drugs, homelessness, and joblessness. But it isn’t easy, and many do not make it to the end
by Charissa Koh

Listen to WORLD Radio’s profile
Northwest

 

Northeast


Purposeful Design in Indianapolis

Picked up, sanded off
A carpentry shop offers ex-addicts and homeless the chance to build furniture, friendship, and a future
by Charissa Koh

Listen to WORLD Radio’s profile
Northeast

 


2020 Hope Awards

For consideration in next year’s Hope Awards contest, let Charissa Koh (ckoh@wng.org) know about a Christian ministry to the poor you’re familiar with that relies not on government financing but on compassionate volunteers supervised by dedicated professionals. Please include a brief description of why a particular ministry impresses you and include its physical and website addresses.

Hope Awards directory

If you’re looking for ideas about something you could start in your own backyard, please see our listing of the 105 organizations we profiled from 2006 to 2018, with their major focuses: addiction, babies, community, disabilities, education, family, gardening, homelessness, immigration, jobs, legal needs, medical, prison, repair work, sex (anti-prostitution), transportation, and youth.

The directory also shows what it takes to start a poverty-fighting ministry: a license, a specific skill (such as auto repair), experience (such as that a mother gains), or neighborliness (a simple desire to invest time in helping others).

Vote button: iStock.com/Yuriy Bucharskiy

Directory of Hope Awards Finalists

 

2018 Hope Awards >