Diann Berry Whisnand
Ministry Location: Rio Grande Valley, Texas
Diann's work as a field personnel calls for her to cross culturally engage in holistic change through Christ to individuals and communities located on the U.S./Mexico border, through ministries and partnerships which address systemic poverty. Systemic poverty is prevalent throughout the entire length of the U.S./Mexico border, and much of this area also falls within the Fellowship's designated rural poverty initiative known as Together for Hope. Diann currently ministers in the extreme southern tip of Texas, in a region bordering Mexico known as the Rio Grande Valley.
Since 2011, Diann's primary focus in addressing poverty has been through literacy. Literacy is a long-term development ministry which, in this case, targets Latino adults and families who want to address their lack of education or English skills. Their hope is to become employable in order to escape a cycle of poverty. Diann has helped to lead and maintain a local Literacy Center offering ESL and GED classes to the community. Literacy initiatives, projects and grants are part of her continuous efforts. She partners with many local, area, and state organizations that also focus on literacy or poverty, trying to bring attention to the needs of the Valley. Diann also lends help and support to other community needs that stem out of poverty.
Diann is always willing to bring this need to the attention of churches throughout the state and country, and can be requested to speak any time of the year on literacy ministry. Another topic often requested relates to Latin American refugees crossing the U.S. border at her ministry location, and how churches can respond. Both of these particular ministries allow Diann to be the presence of Christ on the U.S./Mexico border.
• 2016 Dec/Jan fellowship!: Love God. Teach Neighbor. Be Transformed. — CBF field personnel shares Christ's great love through literacy ministry at U.S.-Mexico border
• 2015 Dec/Jan fellowship!: CBF CARES — Cooperative Baptists donate $25,000 to help Central American refugee children and families
• 2014 Feb/March fellowship!: Diann Whisnand serves immigrants in Rio Grande Valley with literacy ministry
• 2012 June/July fellowship!: Whisnand partners with literacy center to meet needs