Over View

Our vision

A transformed society actively working for social justice.

Our mission statement

In partnership with our member churches and organisations we are inspired by our Christian faith to play a transformative role enabling people to take responsibility for their lives and to promote prophetic action on social justice issues.

Our context

While a great deal has been achieved in the first decade of freedom and democracy in South Africa, many challenges remain. In spite of the houses built, the water and electricity provided, and the growing black middle class, low economic growth and job losses have made it difficult to make much difference to the poverty that existed under apartheid. Illiteracy and insufficient skills development prevent people from finding jobs or starting their own businesses. The HIV and AIDS pandemic is taking a massive toll on our people. Global economic policies favour the rich nations over the poor, and entrench and extend inequality.

Our core business

The core business of the Diakonia Council of Churches is the pursuit of justice: meaning an improved quality of life for the poor, as well as changes in attitudes and structures which perpetuate injustice. This is fundamental to our identity as an organisation.

The churches have a unique contribution to make to the struggle against injustice and poverty. Our task is to facilitate, enable and equip the churches for the task of making this unique contribution.

Our experience

We have been active in the eThekwini Municipality for many years. Our history has given us the knowledge, expertise and skills to achieve our goals. Our particular strengths are:

  • Focusing the attention of churches on the root causes of socio-economic injustice
  • Equipping churches with a variety of social development skills
  • Linking churches with civil society organisations, as well as government
  • Building local, national and international church links
  • Developing creative liturgies on social justice issues
  • Putting faith into action


We provide:

  • Briefings, workshops and training
  • Exposures and encounters
  • Networking
  • Liturgies and bible studies
  • Print and other media
  • Placements for theological students
  • Programmes for church-related visitors.

Our structures

Policy of the Diakonia Council of Churches is decided by a Council consisting of nominees of member churches and organisations. The Council elects an Executive which appoints a Finance Committee. The Executive appoints management staff who in turn appoint other staff. Several committees and task groups advise and assist the organisation on aspects of its work.

How we finance our work

Member churches and organisations contribute financially, but at a modest level, given the high demands made on their limited resources. A large proportion of our funding comes from international church agencies. We have steadily increased the proportion of local funding over the past years, partly in response to the growing demand on international funders by other pressing issues elsewhere.

It is important that we continue to increase local support, through business, organisations and individuals who share our vision of a transformed society. Local sources investing in the Diakonia Council of Churches will reap a worthwhile dividend in the future, as our society and nation becomes more just, more peaceful, more equitable and more prosperous for everyone.

How you can help

You can help our work by:

  • Prayer
  • Bringing issues to our attention
  • Establishing or joining a social action or development group in your church
  • Inviting us to show our video at your church or group
  • Serving on groups planning events and working on short-term projects
  • Translation – English / isiZulu / Afrikaans
  • Providing accommodation for visitors and helping with their programmes
  • Promoting our work through the structures of your church
  • Becoming a Friend and making regular financial contributions