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This episode is not your everyday take on social justice.

Andy Harrington challenges us to look at issues of poverty, social justice, and missions from a different angle. Rather than viewing people and places as projects that need our fixing, he pauses to ask better questions. 

A conversation of humility, empowerment, servanthood, and intentionality, this episode is pure gold. Poverty is all around us regardless of where we live because, as Andy points out, poverty is actually about broken relationships.

“It’s not just about material things. So, when Westerners go with just material things that’s because we see poverty as a very material thing and we think we can solve that by throwing money at it. Well it’s not, it’s not a material thing. Poverty is about broken relationships.”  – Andy Harrington

This one left me speechless, longing to move through the world differently and always asking better questions.

Episode Quotes: 

  • Wherever you are is where you start. You don’t have to go to Africa. Poverty is all around us because poverty can be with billionaires and people with nothing. – Andy Harrington 
  • In this world, at this moment, with everything we are seeing in politics and the degradation of the environment … the trouble with normal is that it always gets worse. – Andy Harrington 
  • Confronting Normal for me means saying we are not going to give into everything we see around us. We are going to be a different flavour. We are going to be a new kind of human. – Andy Harrington 

Guest Bio: 

Andy Harrington is the CEO of the Wellspring Foundation for Education, an organization with a vision to show the love of Christ by being a catalyst for transforming education in Africa, and to foster vibrant communities that address poverty in all its forms. With a particular focus on Rwanda, he oversees teams in Africa and North America that work together to help provide a quality education to over 175,000 young people and to empower a new generation of leaders in Eastern Africa and beyond

Working at both grassroots and systemic levels, Wellspring is committed to change in the whole educational ecosystem. Utilizing mechanisms such as in-depth teacher and parental training, advanced leadership programs and asset based community development, the aim is to build sustainable outcomes that create empowerment, worth and dignity in the individuals and communities involved.

Andy has over thirty years of experience working with Faith based CSO’s and with youth and young adults around the world, including 23 years in leadership with Youth for Christ. He and his wife Helen spent two years in Croatia and Bosnia working with children traumatized by the war and he has led projects in a number of other countries, including as part of the relief efforts for the Asian Tsunami disaster. Andy travels, writes and speaks extensively on a number of issues including social justice and the need to release a new generation of justice and poverty minded leaders. He has a Masters degree in Missiology and says he likes riding motorbikes through Africa, snowboarding and fluffy kittens, though one of the last three may not be true … 

Mentioned In This Episode: 


To weigh in on the conversation … to ask a question … to offer insight … to share a story … or to suggest an upcoming guest for the Confronting Normal Podcast, please email Cindy or Renae below. They would love to hear from you! 

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