Alongsiders has a different DNA. That's why we shy away from terms like "charity" or "non-profit" or even "ministry". Every aspect of what we do is designed to be more Movement than Monument. This is not just clever rhetoric, but impacts everything we do.
Here are a few ways this plays out:
The goal of a Monument is to entertain a larger audience and pull a bigger crowd. The goal of a Movement is to equip an army of people. The former places the emphasis and spotlight on the organization. The latter places the emphasis on what God is doing in people, especially the poorest.
A Monument is about more people hearing OUR message. The Alongsiders movement, in contrast, is about more people being heard. It's about vulnerable children having a voice and being listened to, knowing they are loved, cherished and valued by God.
A Monument seeks to ordain a select few - the elites, the gifted, the special ones - Leaders! The Alongsiders movement, in contrast, works to ordain and empower the ordinary masses, believing that everyone has something to offer - even the poorest, the least educated, especially the ones who have been labelled "victims".
A Monument grows through better, more efficient and clever programming. It is primarily organizational growth. A Movement grows organically, because it seeks to inspire better DNA in each person. A Monument grows through steady addition. A Movement grows exponentially through multiplication.
Monuments seek to maintain order and control the outcomes. Movements value order and structure but do not seek to control the outcome. Authority in a Monument is delegated from the top. In a Movement, authority is delegated out toward the margins.
In a Monument, complexity secures the organization's place at the center of things. The organization specializes in order to become indispensable. In contrast, a Movement is simple yet profound. It can be easily understood and easily replicated by anyone - yet the impact is deep and long-lasting.
A Monument relies on inspiring teaching events to train people. The Alongsiders movement seeks to empower everyone to be a trainer in different contexts, learning as they themselves teach others.
The end result of a monument is dependence. The fruit of a true movement is empowerment.
So, which are you investing in? Are you building a monument or a movement?