What is Excelling Leaders relationship to YWAM (Youth With A Mission)?
Excelling Leaders is a YWAM Ministry that was birthed out of YWAM in the Caribbean and all of our full-time team members are YWAMers. Over the years, part-time, associate team members have joined from many other backgrounds and mission agencies which has brought a unique blending of talents and perspectives to this ministry. It has also broadened our impact around the world.
Do you only work with Christian, nonprofit ministries and missionaries?
Excelling Leaders is a faith based, nonprofit ministry registered in the United States as a 501©3 whose purpose is to encourage and equip missionaries, their families, and their ministries. As a result of the training and experiences of our team members, we only work with groups that have the same focus of Christ-centered ministry.
Do you work with missionaries and organization outside of YWAM?
Since the birth of Excelling Leaders in 2009, we have come alongside missionaries and their families who work with many different missions agencies and that come from many regions and continents of the world. The thing that binds us all together is the love of Christ and the common focus of making a difference in the world because of Jesus.
Does Excelling Leaders offer professional counseling or debriefing?
Excelling Leaders is not a counseling ministry. We are a ministry that focuses on encouraging missionaries using debriefing as one of the tools. To be effective in this, our debrief staff are all trained in debriefing. Most of our debrief team are missionaries who have served cross-culturally themselves and understand the unique challenges that missionaries and their families experience.
Does Excelling Leaders debrief other Christ centered professions?
Excelling Leaders believes that God has called us to encourage and equip missionaries and their families. Since most of our debriefers are missionaries themselves we understand that missionaries face unique challenges because of living and working in cross-cultural settings. The steps and principles that are used in our debriefing will work with Pastors and many other Christ centered professions but as an organization we only debrief missionaries and missionary families.
What does an typical day look like in a 9-day retreat?
The 9 Day Radiant Life Retreat is a personal debrief done in a small group setting of between 7-9 fellow missionaries. The first 4 ½ days are totally focused on debriefing the past season. It is such a great time dedicated to helping you process your story with the Father and letting Him show you His perspective on that season. The second part of the retreat is focused on how to walk into your next season.
During the whole 9 day debrief there are age appropriate sessions for your kids to process the same things that you as an adult are processing but at their level.
Can I bring my kids?
Since the beginning God has called us to minister to the whole family. During the 9 day Radiant Life Retreat we have trained staff taking your kids and teenagers through the same material that you as adults are going through but at their age level.
As a parent you will meet each day for a short time with the MK leader who is working with your kids to keep you informed of what they processed for that day.
For the younger kids (under 3 we will have trained staff working with them as well)
Housing will vary depending on the location but we try to have families as comfortable as possible.
What is debriefing?
Debriefing is a relational but structured process to help a person tell their story in an environment where they feel safe, heard and understood. Debriefing helps you process the realities of the past and their impact for the purpose of release, renewal and moving forward.
What is the role of the debriefer?
All of our debrief staff understand the unique challenges that missionaries face and are trained in debriefing to guide you through the process of debrief and to help you reflect on your experiences. Any and all changes, decisions or actions that result from this debriefing, are solely your choice and are not the responsibility of the debriefer, or Excelling Leaders as a ministry.
Debriefing is NOT
Is my debrief Confidential?
Excelling Leaders understands that safety is essential in telling our story and taking steps forward, especially when it relates to working with families with children. Confidentiality and child safety standards are not only mandated legally and ethically but are also part of the character of God and are one of Excelling Leaders core values. Safety means not only safety for one’s physical self, but is also meant in a relational, emotional, and spiritual sense. No one can honestly and carefully examine where and why it hurts without first feeling safe.
What is shared during your debrief stays here. What is shared here is confidential and will not be shared with anyone other than those you ask us to share with, except if it is deemed by your debriefer that your processing and future action may involve or may lead to harm to yourself or others, there is abuse of self or children, there is knowledge of terrorist activities (past present or future) and or mention of murder.
What Curriculum do you use for debriefing?
All of our debrief team have been trained in debriefing, with many of us having been trained by other ministries who specialize in debrief. We use much of the same materials that we have been trained in, but because the diversity of training that we come with we have been able to take some of the best of all of them and make it fit into our Radiant Life Retreats.
We try to use a lot of active learning which we believe helps us process our emotions at a deeper level. The active processing also helps those missionaries who come to us with English as a second language. Our Radiant Life Retreat workbook is constantly being updated with new ways to help you debrief most effectively but the key remains connecting with the Father in your own way and allowing him to help you get His perspective on the past.
What is coaching?
Most of our coaching team are missionaries themselves with many years of mission experiences and they love to sit and reflect over a “skype cup of coffee.” They understand the challenges of living outside of your passport country, transition, raising a family in a foreign culture, homeschooling and they are simply great listeners.
Many of our coaching team have specific training in coaching. Some are not trained coaches but have experience as pioneer missionaries or business leaders who understand the challenges of writing a ministry plan and are willing to help in that process. Some of our team have experience in graphic design, social media, and web design. Others have experience in farming principles and how to use those principles to help with your farming project. For many of these areas are staff are there to help coach you and help you move forward in ministry.
Where does my donation go?
All the team members of Excelling Leaders are volunteers, so 100% of your gift will go to the preferred project or ministry partner that you designate, except for the direct cost incurred in the processing of your gift. All contributions made to Excelling Leaders are completely under the control of Excelling Leaders. However it is Excelling Leader’s policy to honor the request of donors who wish to support preferred projects and individual team member.
Is my support to Excelling Leaders tax-deductible (for US tax payers)?
Excelling Leaders is a 501(c)3 nonprofit charitable organization and is able to receive tax-deductible donations.
How will Excelling Leaders acknowledge my gift?
Excelling leaders will send you a thank you, in acknowledgement of your gift either by email (if your donation was done on line) or by written post, as well as an IRS approved tax statement at the time of your gift being recorded.
How much of my donation goes to administrative costs?
Since all of our team members are volunteers our administration cost are very low. If you give to a preferred project or team member by check or by a bank to bank transfer a $4.50 per transaction for bookkeeping, processing and mailing, will be incurred. For on line giving the same $4.50 transaction costs will be incurred after the cost from the online processing provider. Those are the only administrative fees that EL charges. If you could make a donation to the EL general ministry fund your donation helps us to process these donations at such a low costs.
What donation methods can I use?
Can I support a specific team member or project through Excelling Leaders?
Yes. Thank you for your interest in supporting a specific project or ministry partner of Excelling Leaders. Per IRS guidelines all contributions made to Excelling Leaders are completely under the control of Excelling Leaders. However it is Excelling Leader’s policy to honor the request of donors who wish to support preferred projects and individual team members. If you have a preference to give to a certain project or team member, please note your “preferred project or ministry team member” as you give on-line. When you send a check to our address, please note on a separate piece of paper your preferred project or team member.
Does Excelling Leaders pay their team members?
All EL team members are volunteers who need support from financial partners for their ministry. Financial gifts play a vital role in expanding ministries and enabling staff to reach people for Christ and help leaders to grow. Support must be for active EL team member. If a recipient’s status changes during the process of fund transfers, donations may instead be applied elsewhere in EL (where needed most).
How do I make a donation “in memory of” or “in honor of” someone?
Thank you for thinking of Excelling Leaders when wishing to make a gift in memory or in honor of someone special, such as a loved one, family member, friend or colleague. You can do so by adding a note to your donation, specifying the name of the person in whose memory/honor you are donating. If you wish, you may designate your gift to a preferred project that Excelling Leaders is working on. You may also request that Excelling Leaders send an acknowledgment letter (e.g., to a surviving family member or representative, or to the person or family member in whose honor your are making the gift). The letter identifies the donor by name and refers to the special gift that was made (it does not disclose the amount of the gift). When including such a request, please provide the appropriate name and address. Please contact our accounting office if you have specific question – firstname.lastname@example.org.