Nepal Summit Inspires Leaders

Question: When a young organization is helping vulnerable people in remote parts of the world, how do you make sure the work is sustainable? This is a real-life leadership development challenge faced by ER partner Xulon Project of Pokhara, Nepal and others in the region.

Trainees gather for ER's Leadership Development SummitAnswer: The solution is to train the current and next generation of leaders. You begin by identifying leaders (and upcoming leaders) who are already committed to the work. Those who seek training are invited to a Leadership Summit where they receive instruction, coaching and leadership materials to continue their development after the meeting concludes.

Last week, Xulon Project presented a summit for 14 leaders, plus support staff. ER leadership helped support the event and participated. For some, the summit required rigorous travel, time-zone changes and sleep loss. But according ER Asia Regional Director Joshua Benavidez the investment in the leaders was profound.

“We are tired and exhausted, but it is all worth it,” he said. “The three-day summit impacted the 14 leaders who attended. I have received already many notes of thanksgiving regarding how the summit impacted their lives.”

These leaders will return to their cities and villages encouraged and inspired to continue serving at-risk people. And, as part the “multiplication principle”, they’ll be looking for the next generation of leaders to train and coach.

Learn more about ER’s Leadership Development initiative. Interested in getting involved? Contact Russ Cline at


JAM: A Vision to Develop African Leaders

(March 28, 2019)

Prior to joining Extreme Response, Alyssa Carrel left Michigan to serve as a short-term volunteer with ER partner Jabulani Africa Ministries in Cape Town, South Africa. Today, she serves as a staff writer and teaching assistant at our South Africa Dream Centre after-school program.

By Alyssa Carrel, ER Staff Writer

I arrived at the Jabulani Africa Ministries (JAM) base in 2015 excited, exhausted from traveling and terrified. I didn’t know if I had it in me to lead — to teach, to challenge, to encourage.

I now look back on that year with great pride. JAM helped train me to become a confident leader, eager to take on new challenges and tasks. This program helped define my passions and narrow my career path. (It also taught me that happiness comes with proximity to the beach.)

Since 2015, JAM has gone through some changes, but its mission remains the same. JAM exists to train leaders and it does so exceptionally well for staff/volunteers and the people they serve. It seeks to grow student and adult leaders and have them invest in their communities.

I’ve seen boys transform into young men, and young women grow in confidence. I’ve seen teens acquire a burning passion to reach out to their communities to make a positive impact.

For the past 12 years, JAM has operated in an old, World War ll army base located on the back of Table Mountain, a local tourist site. This is where most of the staff/team live and where they conduct leadership camps.

There is an instant atmosphere of peace when entering the mountain. The leadership of JAM is beyond grateful to have been given use of this land, but the organization now needs something different. While great for camps, the site is difficult to access.

New Location to Strengthen Leadership Development

JAM leadership plans to move its operations to a new, more accessible site in Hout Bay, on the Western Cape of South Africa. The goal is to build a leadership development center that will accommodate 40 people for leadership seminars and events.

The JAM staff’s dream is to expand its reach and influence, while streamlining and strengthening its training to better serve its community. JAM also intends to rent out space to help generate revenue to support its work.

JAM leaders have found several great locations in the valley of Hout Bay, but needs funds for a down payment in order to secure one of these sites.

Interested in helping this ER partner expand its reach and impact? Click to learn more about JAM and its expansion plans.

Why it matters:

  • *Supporting partners working with local populations is highly efficient
  • *Local organizations can develop deep relationships those they serve
  • *JAM’s vision aligns with ER’s – they are training the next generation of leaders

Scroll below to read about ER’s commitment to leadership development.


Building Leaders, Community in Ecuador

(Oct. 18 2018)

Leadership Development requires extensive trainingFive organizations pooled their resources to sponsor a dynamic leadership conference in Ecuador: Extreme Response, Pan de Vida, Youth World, Reach Beyond and Inca Link. Each organization is committed to helping people escape from challenging circumstances. The training is designed to provide frontline leaders with the skills, insights and tools to enhance and expand their work.

Attendees included staff, partners and invited leaders from organizations throughout Ecuador.

“Leader Mundial Ecuador brought together 48 leaders from all over the country to learn, grow and build a community that will impact thousands of adults and children all over Ecuador,” said ER Americas Director Brian Wallace.

Summits provide Leadership Development“The things that we have learned from Leader Mundial and Russ Cline, we want to pass on to other leaders who will impact their communities to change lives and bring hope for a better future.”

ER would like to thank all the participants and sponsors, especially sessions leaders Rich Brown from Inca Link, Tim Broach from Reach Beyond, Aaron Passmore from Youth World, and Oscar Aguirre from Pan de Vida.

Learn more about ER’s Leadership Development initiative. Interested in getting involved? Contact Russ Cline at

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