BRIEF HISTORY OF SHAPING DESTINY

Posted on Feb 11, 2013 in general

Shaping Destiny was founded in July 2005 by Ken Acha, a man whose family personally knows suffering well because his father was born a complete orphan from birth and he and his siblings lived in poverty after their father passed away when he was 9 years old.

The SD began when Ken felt called to put into practice Jesus’ command to love your neighbor as yourself by sponsoring three orphans in Cameroon at a time when he himself had very little money. By the end of 2005, seeing the need on the ground, an orphanage was started to serve very needy children. The number of children in the orphanage increased from 10 to 21 to 40 and then to 85 by the end of 2010.

In May of 2009, a fundraising effort was started to build an orphanage facility for the kids. The one hundred and fifty thousand (150,000) dollar facility was completed in June of 2011 and the children moved in immediately.  In 09/2011, 500 new orphans were helped and another orphan base location started in a different town in Cameroon.

In 2011 a foster care program was successfully started to place orphans with local Christians and to encourage these Christians to grow in their Christian service of taking care of orphans in their own communities. This was an amazing success where local assets are being used to solve local problems. This foster care system now has about 30 children. Expansion has been severely limited by the lack recruitment and training of social workers that can appropriately provide counseling and training for both the foster parents and children.

In the middle of 2012, after a serious organization review that discovered that we could not adequately achieve our short-term and long-term goals without recruiting and training committed Christians who wanted to serve God, we decided to downgrade. After spending a lot of time in prayer and fasting, we came up with a vision that we believe God gave us for the next season of the ministry. To grow and be more fruitful, we needed to be pruned ( John 15: 1-10). Through an extremely painful process,  we reduced the number of staff in Cameroon from 7 to 3 and reduced the number of children we were helping from 600 the previous year to only 100 orphans.  As part of preparing for our future plans to exponentially increase the number of children we help  in a sustainable way, we started our Missionary Training School, Missionary Mandate which provides 3 months of  intensive training for short-term volunteer missionaries and 9 month training for long-term missionaries and staff. We also started our Missionary Training College to provide similar training for candidates who will not be affiliated with our movement upon graduation.

In line with the new vision that we believe God gave us, at the end of 2012, we changed the structure of our operations from an international organization that is run from the top down with power concentrated at the top to an international movement that is broad-based and united by a common passion and values. The vision that God gave us we believe was not for a single organization but for a movement with a decentralized structure. A group of Christians from all backgrounds, races, cultures, denominations that are united by common values and a simple desire to give it all up for Christ and share Christ and serve the poor.

Starting 2013, we are also doing a major overhaul in the way we do discipleship training. We have founded SDM Books which will produce discipleship and poverty alleviation material that is better suited for the orphans that we serve. We are also deepening the level of our discipleship training.

We believe that God has amazing things for the Shaping Destiny. We pray that you will consider joining hands with us to share Christ and serve the poor.