our mission

"IDES exists to meet physical and spiritual needs of suffering people throughout the world in the name of Jesus Christ."

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our core values


We are to show others the love God has shown us through His Son, Jesus Christ. (Luke 6:36; 1 John 3:16-18)


Our gratitude for God’s grace motivates us to give to others. (James 2:15-17; Proverbs 3:27, 28)


We are “beggars telling other beggars where to find food.”  By giving physical bread we seek to earn the right to share “The Bread of Life” with the hungry. (Matt. 28:19,20; Acts 2:38; Colossians 1:28,29)


We must be good examples of what we teach.  We are to be faithful and trustworthy stewards.  We are to live above reproach. (2 Cor. 8:19-21; 1 Thes. 5:23, 24; 1 Tim. 3:2)

Dependence on God

We are dependent on God for wisdom and guidance every day.  We are to pray about everything.  We will trust God to provide for our needs and we will seek first His kingdom.(John 15:5; Phil. 4:6, 7, 19; Matt. 6:33)


We believe that God works through His church to accomplish His purpose.  We believe God has gifted His people to do ministry in His name.(Eph. 4:11-16; 1 Cor. 12)

Glorify God

“Whatever you eat or drink or whatever you do, you must do all for the glory of God.”(1 Cor. 10:31; Matt. 5:16)

Our History

Founder of IDES, Milton Bates

Founder of IDES, Milton Bates

1970: Following a major cyclone that hit Bangladesh, Milton Bates, and his wife, Janet, were deeply moved by the utter destruction they saw on the news reports. Burdened to help somehow, Milton and Janet prayed for God to reveal a way to unite the brotherhood of independent Christian Churches/Churches of Christ in a significant relief effort. After writing and sending over 500 letters from their own kitchen table to various Christian leaders, 9 men wrote back that they would support Milton if he volunteered to lead the effort. Faithfully, Milton and Janet continued to pray for direction, and for the missionaries they were connected with around the world.

Then, at the 1973 North American Christian Convention, Milton and these 9 leaders met together for the first time, and International Disaster Emergency Service was officially created. 


Today: IDES has various staff members working out of our very own headquarters in Noblesville, Indiana; all of IDES volunteer opportunities are facilitated here.

IDES serves in five main Focus Areas around the world: evangelism, disaster relief, medical care, community development, and hunger relief.