Vision of the SADP

As brothers and sisters in Christ, representing a variety of churches and agencies, we begin a relationship to explore our partnership relationship in ministry and build the Kingdom of Jesus Christ.

We together embrace the goal of eradicating poverty in South Africa, through the transformation of both South Africans and North Americans, and the empowerment of the poor.


The focus of SADP:  Social justice, social development and poverty alleviation, HIV and Aids.

The SADP will distinguish between a network (in this case the UMSW) and projects:  The purpose of the network is to nurture existing partnerships and to foster new partnerships.

The accepted communication lines for projects is directly with partners and copy to the network (UMSW)

The key performance areas for the network (UMSW) are:

  • To provide an enabling environment for the fostering of new partnerships and the nurturing of existing partnerships
  • Communication between all partners
  • To promote and enhance involvement and ownership


The South African Diaconal Partnership between Uniting Reformed Church in Southern Africa and the RCA (Global Mission), Christ Memorial Church, CRWRC (later Partners Worldwide) was born out of talks between the Commission for Church Unity (URCSA) and the North American churches.  Originally it was suppose to report to the Commission but that never realised in practice.

It was decided that the partnership should focus on the diaconate of the churches and that the respective churches should be treated as equal partners.

A North America staff person was appointed to organise and coordinate the partnership and he was based in South Africa (Mamelodi).

Three phases in the development of the partnership can be distinguished:

  • Phase 1:  A staff-oriented activity
  • Phase 2:  Development of relationship with projects
  • Phase 3:  The re-definition of the partnership

The United Ministry for Service and Witness was formed in 2006 and this development brought the DRC, DRCA and RCA into the partnership.

On the North America side other partners emerged e.g. Second Table Ministries, Schenectady Church.

URCSA also has partners with churches in Europe and the question arose how those partnerships impact on the SADP.