Kay Warren is an evangelical leader, author, AIDS activist, and co-founder of Saddleback Church in Southern California. Along with her husband, Rick, Warren founded Saddleback in 1980 with just a single family to fill the pews. Today it has 120-acre campus, 22,000 weekly attendees, and has provided spiritual guidance and source material to over 400,000 ministers worldwide.
In 2002, Warren became "seriously disturbed" by the scope of the AIDS epidemic; she has since set up an AIDS ministry at Saddleback and spoken out about the disease around the world. Warren is the co-founder and co-director (with her husband) of The Global PEACE Fund, which fights poverty, disease, and illiteracy.
Warren has spoken to the United Nations Global Coalition on Women and AIDS. In 2006, Warren was among eight women honored for their humanitarian efforts at the CNN Inspire Summit. Warren is the author of Foundations Participant's Guide and Dangerous Surrender: What Happens When You Say Yes to God.
Question: What does Africa need?
Waren: Africans are no different than anybody else. They . . . Some of them live . . . have less physically, less materially of this world’s goods. But they are sure rich in relationships. I’ve . . . Some of my heroes are folks I’ve met in Africa. We talk about that Africa doesn’t need a handout, but it needs a hand up. And that most people who live in poverty don’t need a handout. They need dignity. They need a job. They need something to make a living for themselves so they can take care of their families. And to me one of the most powerful things we can do is to help with job training and microfinance, microenterprises. The stories are amazing of people who received tiny little loans - $10, you know, $5 U.S. And for us that seems like . . . That’s a Starbucks coffee plus a donut. And yet in other places of the world, $5 or $10 makes the difference between a life of bonded slavery to somebody they can’t get out of debt to; somebody living on the edge of poverty; or somebody having their life . . . So microfinance, microenterprise is a great way to go.
Recorded on: 12/11/07