As itinerant evangelists, Charlie and Debbie Chivers recognized the need for ministry to the community of people with disabilities. In response to this need, the Chivers decided to commit to working full-time as missionaries to people with disabilities. In 1982 Special Touch Ministry, Inc was born.
What began as a small summer camp attended by 32 people grew, as others caught the vision, to a nationwide ministry opening the doors of the church to people with disabilities. Though the years Special Touch Ministry acquired a high degree of respect, both in and out of the community of people with disabilities.
Special Touch is a non-profit faith-based organization, interdenominational in scope, committed to serving people with intellectual or physical disabilities, their families and caregivers. Special Touch Ministry, Inc. is primarily supported through the prayers and gifts of concerned individuals, businesses, churches, and other ministry organizations.
For our Core Values, we used an acronym as an aid in memory. Since we were “crafting” our core values, it was suggested we use the acronym CRAFT. These are the values we hold most dear:
Create a safe, respectful environment for an individual’s potential and value
Relationship through Servant hood
Friendship without reciprocation
Team based ministry
Leadership Culture- A Culture of Communication
Our Leadership Culture defines how all leaders in Special Touch Ministry are expected to function. It is imperative, in order for every leader to remain a leader, that they operate consistently within our “Culture of Communication.” To do so, one must be intentional and thorough in all communication with the leadership team. That intentionality will require openness with all other about everything needed to be known in order to effectively function as a team.
No one can really know what others do not know. Neither can one be sure of what others know. For that reason, assumptions are often made more than they should be in both of these areas. And… it is impossible to know what anyone thinks… until that information is brought forward by the one who thinks it, and even then… who can know for sure? That’s where trust plays its role. A “Culture of Communication” will make no assumptions, but speak often and out loud to one another, with much humility and respect, making sure there are no hidden pieces of information that can affect the team, thereby building a very strong level of trust between all team members.
In the on-going growth and development of our Leadership Team, including all general leadership roles within the structure of Special Touch Ministry, Inc. it has been determined that only those individuals who clearly demonstrate a possession of all four of the major C’s of our leadership culture, listed below, will be given leadership roles within Special Touch Ministry. The leaders we seek must agree to operate consistently and vigorously in this “Culture of Communication” and possess and exemplify the following traits:
We anticipate the blessings of the Lord as we work together emphasizing these positive core values and leadership culture.