We seek to have all Christians support at least one of God’s workers, and all His workers be fully funded.
The Purpose of Ergatas
We want to be part of the solution to two major problems in the world today (yea, there are lots out there, but two is enough!).
The first is that it takes a long time for missionaries to raise support. It's a tough job recruiting missionaries in the first place, but then it often takes 1-2 years before they can get to work, if they make it at all.
The second problem is that many Christians are missing out on the blessings of being part of the Great Commission!
So what can be done? Incredibly, one solution can help with BOTH problems! (Hey, that's why you picked them right?!). We partner Christians with missionaries. The Christian is blessed, and the missionary gets to work sooner.
Missionaries who are raising funds can create a profile on the site at no cost, describing their ministry, where they will be ministering, what job skills they will be applying, and lots more. Ergatas widens their network of potential partners to the world!
Christians (maybe you!) who are interested in missions can discover a missionary, from any organization, that they might be called to support. Perhaps a missionary working in the same industry. Maybe they have a heart for a particular country and want to partner with someone ministering there.
But not all partnerships are made in an instant! If you're not ready to commit yet, you can message the missionary anonymously to ask questions and get to know them. You can sign up for their newsletter, or pray for them. If/when you feel led, you can partner with them through financial support.
When you are ready to make a donation, the donate link will take you to the missionary's organization's donate page where you can safely donate to the missionary you have selected. Ergatas does not take any portion of the donation.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you pronounce "Ergatas"?
What does Ergatas cost?
Ergatas is completely free to both users and missionaries. Anyone can come to the site and perform a search. Clicking the donate button for a particular missionary simply takes them to that missionaries existing donation page on their organizations site, and the user can donate directly to the missionary. We do not take any amount of the donation. We're just here to help make the connection.
Is this safe for missionaries in sensitive locations?
Missionaries serving in sensitive locations should be careful what information they provide in their Ergatas profile, as all of it will be publicly visible.
One possible approach to using Ergatas in that situation is to provide a false name in the profile, leave out any photos, and leave the location field blank. Care must also be taken that the provided donation link does not go to a page that lists the missionaries name. In order to ensure the donation makes it to the missionary, the organization receiving the donation must be aware of the false name used, and direct donations for that false name to the true missionary.
We cannot make any guarantees of safety and the above approach is just a suggestion. Each missionary must use their own judgement as to whether or not creating a profile on Ergatas would put them at risk.
If you are a missionary in a sensitive location, or are familiar with the plight of those who are, we'd love to hear from you! We would like to talk about what we can do to make Ergatas safer to use.
Aren't there other non-profit search pages out there?
Yes, there are a few sites out there that allow you to search through all registered non-profits. Ergatas is different for a few reasons. The main difference is that we focus on individual missionaries. Ergatas aims to help missionaries raise support, not help organizations fund their projects (funding projects is of course a worthy goal, just not our goal!). Of course, the organization benefits by having a fully funded missionary. A second difference is that we are focused only on Christian organizations.
How can I trust that the search results represent real missionaries?
It is critical that users be able to have faith in the validity of the missionaries represented. This is accomplished in a few ways. First, the missionary must select their organization from an approved list. These have been manually inspected to ensure that they are registered 501c(3) organizations, that the given website truly belongs to the organization, and that they are compatible with our statement of faith.
If the missionaries organization is not listed, they may apply to have the organization considered for inclusion.
Secondly, the donation link given in the profile must match the verified domain of the organizations website. The fact that the organization has provided them with a donation link also gives you confidence that the organization has vetted the missionary.
Finally, profiles can be flagged by users for review if anything looks suspicious.
How can I know that each missionary is spreading the right gospel?
Each missionary will be asked to agree to a statement of faith before creating a profile. Further, users can visit their organizations site and read their statement of faith as well.
Don't most people only support missionaries they know?
It is very often the case that a missionaries partners come from people they have a prior relationship with, and that is a wonderful thing! We firmly believe that missionaries should continue to cultivate relationships with people during partnership development.
But there are also some people who are interested in supporting missionaries who fit certain criteria, even if they don't know the missionary personally. For example, a doctor might want to support a medically skilled missionary. Or someone might want to support those ministering to the totally un-reached. Someone who has a heart for a particular country might want to support a missionary working in that country, etc.
These are the kinds of people that Ergatas will be most helpful to. Of course, once a user finds a missionary to support, we would heartily encourage them to get to know their missionary, build a relationship, and pray for them.
How do I know a missionaries information is up-to-date?
At least once every 4 months, missionaries are required to either update their profile information or confirm that it is still current. Any profiles not updated or confirmed within that time will be disabled until an update is made. You can see the last date an update was made on the missionaries profile page.
Can my organization use Ergatas?
Over 180 organizations are already approved that can be selected by missionaries. If you don't see your organization in the list though, you can apply to have it added.
For an organization to be approved, it must meet the following requirements:
- Agrees with our statement of faith.
- Has an online donation page that allows donations to be designated to specific missionaries.
- Based in USA, Canada, Australia, or UK (this requirement will be removed at a later date).
- A registered non-profit. In the USA, that means a 501c(3)
Once you submit the application, we will review it and get back to you within a week. If the organization is approved, then it will become available for anyone to select on their profile. Approval only needs to be done once per organization, not for each missionary in that organization.
Do you have an app?
Yes! Ergatas is a new kind of app called a Progressive Web App. That means you can install it and use it like an app, but you don't have to bother with any app stores.
If you're on Android, make sure you're using Chrome. When you open ergatas.org you should see a prompt to install the app.
On iOS, first make sure you're using Safari. Click the "share" button and tap "Add to Home Screen".
How does Ergatas support itself?
Ergatas is completely free to both users and missionaries. Our own expenses are covered by the generous donations of users. Our staff raise their own personal support, just like the missionaries we are helping.
We also keep our costs low by taking advantage of non-profit discounts and grants. For example, we didn't pay anything to create this website, and we are currently not paying anything to host it!
Who We Are
Kevin and Ruth Horan founded Ergatas in 2020. Before Ergatas, they had both served as missionaries for about 15 years. They met while serving together in 2011 and were married in 2012. Their two kids are Zoey and Zachary.
Kevin earned his Ph.D. in Computer Science in 2011 and enjoys programming. Ruth has worked with gospel audio materials and doing database work. She is excellent at organizing things.
When Kevin started off in missions, the thought of raising 100% of his support was quite daunting! But over the past many years, God has graciously provided for them every single day. Kevin wished a tool like Ergatas had existed back when he was getting started, to make things a little easier.
We hope this tool will help others on their partnership development journey.