We seek justice, hope and transformative change

CBM is a global leader in disability inclusive development, devoted to ending the cycle of disability and poverty.

Our work, supported generously by our loyal supporters and the Australian Government, was founded more than 115 years ago on the core Christian values of: social justice, human rights, compassion and servant leadership.

These same values guide our staff and organisation today. They inspire us to walk beside people with disabilities in some of the poorest communities around the world; to serve, empower and enable each individual and their community.

“You insult your maker when you exploit the powerless. When you are kind to the poor you honour God.” Proverbs 14:31

Following in the footsteps of Jesus, our work is dedicated to ensuring all people can achieve their full potential, irrespective of race, gender, age, location, religion or social status. Our work reaches those who, because of disability, prejudice and social stigma, are the hardest to reach.

Together with you, we work to transform the lives of more than five million people each year. During our 45-plus years in Australia, hundreds of thousands of people have supported our vision and mission.

We are unwavering in our commitment to leaving no-one behind and ending the cycle of poverty and disability. And we invite you to continue, or join, this mission with us.

“Treat one another justly, love your neighbours, be compassionate. Don’t take advantage of widows, orphans, visitors, the poor.”

Zechariah 7:10-11

Our Christian foundation underpins our approach

Faith and foundations

In 1908, German Pastor Ernst Christoffel travelled to Turkey where he was overwhelmed by the hardship experienced by people living in extreme poverty. Moved by Jesus’s example and compelled by the needs of people with disabilities living in poverty, he established the Christoffel Blindenmission (Christian Blind Mission — now CBM).

Today, CBM Australia builds on these foundations through our unique blend of programs, advocacy and advisory works. We, as well as many of our staff, supporters and partners, remain motivated by the example of Jesus. We are joined by others from around the world to support and drive our crucial work.

Together, we provide hope and seek justice that reaches individuals and creates systematic and sustainable change.

“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.” Hebrews 10:23 

Our Christian foundations continue to drive our ways of working

Faith and hope

We find hope in Jesus and His example of serving all people, regardless of faith, ethnicity or ability. We find hope in His promise of eternal life for those who live according to God’s will.

This is the hope that motivated Pastor Ernst Christoffel, and continues to propel us to fulfil the mission of CBM. We are able to witness God’s love on earth as we see those caught up in the cycle of poverty and disability experiencing life to the full and reaching for their goals and dreams.

“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe…” Ephesians 1:18-19 (partial) 

Faith and equality

Like Jesus, we believe that all people are equal, so we don’t discriminate in who we support and work alongside. We are devoted to justice for all, and see this as an expression of God’s Kingdom. We follow Jesus’s example of love for those in greatest need, no matter their gender, age, race, religion, or social status. This means that we serve all people in those communities where we work without discrimination. 

If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honoured, every part rejoices with it.” 1 Corinthians 12:26

Faith and justice

CBM models Jesus’s radical view of justice and how He served others with love. Our focus is people with disabilities — those in the poorest communities who experience exclusion from family and community life. We want to see inclusion within education and livelihood opportunities, access to healthcare, as well as social, economic and spiritual engagement. We promote the voices of people with disabilities and the inclusion of people with disabilities in our work. 

And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8

Faith and transformative change

Jesus spent time on the fringes and saw the potential for transformative change where others could not. CBM believes transformative change happens with and through individuals, families, communities and organisations at local, national and global levels. 

“He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Revelation 21:4

CBM works predominantly with local disabled persons’ organisations and partner organisations as they are best placed to understand their local context — some are development arms of the local church ministering to the community. We believe our work complements the transformative change sought by the local churches, which rightly takes the role of explaining Christian teaching to its community.

We see the ripple of change in so many ways in the lives of people with disabilities through our programs and the enrichment of Australian supporters’ experiences, including in Australia where churches connect with our Luke14 resources. We continue to seek and listen to the voices of people with disabilities.

"Speak up for the people who have no voice."

Proverbs 31:8

A message from CEO Jane Edge

“For me, CBM is a movement of the heart. Every day I am privileged to hear incredible stories of the resilience of people with disabilities, to meet our wonderful supporters who are so committed to making positive change happen and to see the impact of our work in some of the poorest places on earth.

“As someone passionate about social justice, I’ve been involved in international aid for over 25 years and I’ve never seen anything more compelling than CBM’s work. My faith is the source of my passion for social justice and my desire to serve the poorest people in our world, to enable them to have a voice.

“It is so important that our view of the world includes all people and that all are valued and have dignity.

“People with disabilities, as well as CBM supporters, partners, volunteers and staff, recognise the heart-breaking effects of the cycle of poverty and disability. More than one billion people around the world live with disabilities: that’s one in seven. In developing countries it can be more like one in five.

“That is why CBM will continue to seek justice, hope and transformative change.”

We seek justice

In advocating for, and advising on, the inclusion of people with disabilities.

We bring hope

In our humanitarian response to disasters and in building inclusive communities.

We bring transformative change

In our field programs working with people with disabilities in the poorest communities, and through our work advising others on inclusion.

Help us transform the lives of 10 million people every year