The Regional Missionary Initiative was created as a result of requests for leadership and organizational development from Methodist and United Methodist women around the world. These dedicated women work in local areas to assist women, children and youth to work in solidarity with each other on specific issues. Regional Missionaries build relationships with Methodist, United Methodist, ecumenical and grassroots programs that focus on issues of health (particularly primary health care and HIV/AIDS), gender equality and elimination of violence among women, and support for the uprooted and marginalized. Currently seven Regional Missionaries serve within the four regions plus one retired Regional Missionary serving as a consultant to the initiative.
All programs and network connections carried out by Regional Missionaries reflect the needs and priorities of their own region, covering:
- Sub-Saharan Africa
- Latin America
- The Caribbean
Women in the region shape Regional Missionaries’ work. Each missionary assists the women and youth they work with in developing projects and programs that meet their expressed needs and priority issues. Regional Missionaries implement their work with women, children and youth primarily through:
- Training programs
- Strategic planning
- Network development
Regional Missionaries are a part of United Methodist Women's International Ministries focus on women, children and youth. Continual outreach to work with ecumenical partners, especially in the development of resources and networks is a vital part of their work plans.