Annual Report 2022-23

God’s Provision, Global Partnership and Prayer

Prayer, Provision and Partnership 

Dear friends,

“The Lord literally went ahead of us!”  

The Regional Secretary was brimming with excitement as he recounted to me his recent visit to a pioneering country. Starting a new student group needs a committed person on the ground and we had long been praying and looking for one without success. But just recently God brought events together in miraculous ways when we made contact with a former IFES student who had moved to this country from a different continent. By the end of the visit, five believers had agreed to serve as a board to pioneer the movement. They arranged to do our board training program, where they worked together on vision, mission, and core values, as well as planning the next three months! 

I love how this story reflects so much that is at the heart of IFES: the importance of patient prayer, the priority of mission, the way the global fellowship led to such a good contact, and how governance training served as a foundation for a new national movement. It also reminds me how valuable it is to be together.  

Tim and EPSA regional team visiting NIFES Nigeria

Over the past year many long-awaited face-to-face meetings have taken place across the fellowship. After two difficult years, many of our national movement leaders were “running on empty”. They really needed the care, encouragement, fellowship, and equipping that they can receive from their IFES networks. This wave of events has also helped IFES staff strengthen our relationship with national leaders and better understand how IFES can serve their needs in rapidly evolving ministry contexts.

In this 75th anniversary year for IFES, I am reminded how those themes of God’s provision, global partnership and prayer have resounded over the years. And as we look forward, it is with a deep conviction that this is a time for us to renew our commitment to one another as we pray and work together to bring the hope and light of Christ to students around the world. It is this synergy that inspired the initial growth of IFES and I believe it is where God will meet us as we join him in the good works he has prepared for us.

Thank you for joining us in those works. As you read this report, I trust you will be excited to see how God is at work in the lives of students and how together we can continue to help our local and national ministries thrive.

Yours in Christ,

Tim Adams 
IFES General Secretary 

“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Deuteronomy 31:8 (NIV)

Thriving Together

Our Vision and Priorities

Our vision is to see students thriving together as communities of disciples, transformed by the gospel, and impacting the university, the church, and society for the glory of Christ.

IFES shapes lives and develops student leaders all around the world. We support locally led student movements in over 180 different countries and territories, and we are committed to seeing a faithful student witness established in every university in the world. It is our hope for the 2020s that God will help us thrive together in our calling as a global fellowship.

Our new four-strand Thriving Together strategy was launched in February 2022, following more than two years of wide-reaching consultation and listening for the voice of God to lead us. This identified the need to embrace collaboration and new approaches, and to focus on transformation and impact. The four strategic priorities that will guide our work until 2030 will be Thriving in Witness, Thriving in Whole-Life Commitment, Thriving on New Ground, and Thriving into the Future.

We want to be a fellowship that is united in vision and mission with an appropriate infrastructure that facilitates fruitful connections across our global network. We want to share our gifts, resources and experience with each other, enhance our partnerships, strengthen our creativity, and by God’s grace, help one another to thrive together.  

Thriving in Witness

The educational setting presents a unique opportunity for young people to explore new ideas and meet people from different backgrounds. It may be the only opportunity for some to hear the gospel. Our work inspires and equips Christians to reach out effectively and with resilience in the face of challenges.

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

Acts 1:8

This year we have brought students, leaders and staff together across international boundaries to build each other up in Christian witness as they’ve shared in dialogue, training and worship. We want to thrive in witness together and in partnership, from everywhere to everywhere.

A ‘taste of heaven’ in Francophone Africa

Three hundred student leaders, staff workers and graduates from 19 national movements gathered to build community, share experiences, gain skills and renew their vision for witness at the PANAF (Panafricaine) conference in Burundi.

“It was a taste of… heaven, with so many different tribes worshipping together. Sometimes it feels we are the only ones… doing this. It strengthens my faith to know that we are a family working together.”

Odette, student leader, GBEEN Niger

Sharing perspectives across the globe

About 100 staffworkers from every IFES region travelled to Indianapolis, USA, to share their stories with thousands of students from across North America at the 2022 Urbana conference. It was an opportunity to broaden their own perspectives and those of the students from InterVarsity USA, Intervarsity Canada, and GBUC Canada, as participants were inspired to consider the role God has for each of them in the world. 

AFES Australia welcomed students from all around the South Pacific region to their National Training Event (NTE), to listen to God’s Word, share updates, and consider how God might use them in his global story. Students from TSCF Papua New Guinea followed up with a series of evangelistic events in partnership with a local church in Australia.

Students from TSCF Papua New Guinea at NTE in Australia

Witnessing to the Scientific Community

LCI Latin America training workshop in Chile

One major block for many students is the perceived conflict between science and faith. As part of our Engaging the University ministry, the Logos and Cosmos Initiative (LCI) supports projects fostering dialogue between theology and the sciences, in Latin America and Francophone Africa.  In 2022, 23 new Christian academic “catalysts” joined the 18 qualifying to lead their projects for another year.

A training workshop in Burundi allowed catalysts to renew their vision and hear from eminent regional scholars, and a similar gathering was held in Chile for Latin American catalysts.

Thriving in Whole-Life Commitment

The educational setting presents a unique opportunity for young people to explore new ideas and meet people from different backgrounds. It may be the only opportunity for some to hear the gospel. Our work inspires and equips Christians to reach out effectively and with resilience in the face of challenges.

“Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. Then, whether I come and see you or only hear about you in my absence, I will know that you stand firm in the one Spirit, striving together as one for the faith of the gospel.”

Philippians 1:27

Peer support in Europe


A supportive online community has developed among participants of the IFES Europe Formación leadership trainingprogram, following the in-person launch of a new cohort in July 2022 in Poland. Formación continues for ten months as the 37 students and nine community group leaders continue to meet online.

“It is wonderful to know I can truly rely on this community, who live far away from each other but are closely connected through the Spirit.”

Anna, Formación launch conference participant, MEKDSZ (Hungary)

Emerging leaders in the Middle East

Nearly 200 staff and students from the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region gathered for a long-awaited in-person conference designed to equip young graduates for leadership. Many commented on how encouraging it was to hear about the joys and struggles of the other movements in the region.

“I was encouraged to hold tight onto Jesus even though I came struggling with many big issues. I saw how important it was for students to study the Bible in small groups and I want to learn more about how to do this and lead others.”

A participating student (from a MENA country)

Developing women leaders in South Asia 

Popular training and events for developing women in leadership were hosted by the regional Women@IFESSA, with a focus on spiritual gifts.

Impact in the workplace

The Graduate Impact resource ministry helps young graduates learn to think, speak, and live distinctively for Jesus in the workplace. In 2022, it launched the online and in-person Transition course for those preparing for work. Around 80 students across Eurasia have already used it, as have students in Latin America.

Graduate Impact also conducts the Cross-Current discipleship program, helping young adults connect faith and work through local or profession-based learning communities. In 2022, groups met in 19 cities in 15 countries in Eurasia, Europe, and Latin America.

Thriving on New Ground

As Tim Adams’ introduction illustrates, God so often answers our prayers by harnessing relationships nurtured over years to open up new avenues for our work – leading students to live with and for Jesus. That includes areas where Christian witness is forbidden, absent or struggling. This year:

  • students in three Eurasian nations were inspired to boldly share the gospel in their own homes when a team (of mostly students) travelled to a sensitive country to offer inspirational training based on the book of Acts.
  • foundations for growth were laid in Equatorial Guinea, Cabo Verde and Namibia, where boards of trustees were established or re-established.
  • four new student-led groups were launched in Martinique, where religion in educational settings is banned, after a call from IFES Caribbean regional secretary Marc Pulvar in August to pray and fast.
  • the first ever dedicated staff member began working in a sensitive country in East Asia. 

“Don’t you have a saying, ‘It’s still four months until harvest’? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest.”
John 4:35

“I don’t want to waste time… I will be direct and just share the gospel… I am really surprised about where my courage has come from.”  

A student (from a closed Eurasian country)

Thriving into the future

As we’ve celebrated our 75th anniversary this year, we’ve looked back in gratitude and forwards in trust, seeking fruit from the emphases that have provided such incredible impact so far: evangelism, discipleship, leadership development and Scripture.

“By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established.”

Proverbs 24:3

Growing in effectiveness

By instilling well-structured, God-honoring governance practices our Governance Development team seeks to empower a well-equipped and motivated general secretary, high-performing staff, and thriving student groups. In its 10th anniversary year a fifth e-course, Caring for your General Secretary, enhanced its training provision.

Growing in resilience

We recognise that both national staff and student leaders need resilience to face a wide range of growing challenges in ministry. Throughout 2022, various parts of the fellowship were preparing diligently for World Assembly 2023, to be held in August in Jakarta, Indonesia. Our theme will be Tabah dan Tangguh: Witnesses in the University and Beyond. Tabah and Tangguh are two Indonesian words which together suggest strength, resilience, like that well-watered tree of Psalm 1.

Growing in partnership

We see staff wellbeing – in all our structures – as critical to the ability of our ministry to thrive. One practical outworking was the latest East Asia Staff Conference when over 200 representatives from 16 national movements enjoyed time together in Malaysia in December. Equally important is fostering healthy partnerships, for example, the national leaders’ consultation in South Pacific, when General Secretaries from Australia, Fiji, Guam, New Caledonia, New Zealand, the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu came together for the first time to unite around a regional strategy.

Growing in depth

Our Scripture Engagement team continues to provide an invaluable, biblically-infused perspective to the global fellowship. This year they developed the new Foundations of Scripture Engagement e-learning course and facilitated in-person regional training in South Asia, EPSA, and Latin America.

“It was simply amazing to see the fellowship and sharing in small groups, and moments of personal encounter with our LORD Emmanuel”
David Ho, General Secretary, FES (Malaysia)

Staff from KGK Japan with Annette Arulrajah, outgoing IFES East Asia Regional Secretary, at the East Asia Staff Conference


The General Secretary is appointed to oversee and lead IFES ministry, supported by the Associate General Secretaries, Chief Operating Officer, and Head of Global Resource Ministries. This team takes responsibility for developing and sharing priorities and resources across the globe. All senior staff were able to reconnect in Kenya, in person, for the first time since 2019.

In 2022 we gave thanks for former Associate General Secretary, Martin Haizmann (Germany), who retired after 20 years of service as an IFES senior staff member.

Leadership Team

Board of Trustees

The Board is responsible for creating policy and ensuring doctrinal integrity within IFES. It too met in person for the first time since 2019. The Board also launched a review of IFES governance structures, involving worldwide consultation: a useful process that will strengthen and improve the workings of our governance bodies.


IFES regional secretaries help us understand how best to respond to the diverse, dynamic cultures of the world’s universities. They provide mentoring, supervision and training for staff and students. They also connect movements within their region to share ideas, expertise, and encouragement.

In the last year we appointed Lisman Komaladi as the new Regional Secretary for East Asia.  




During 2022, we were able to build on the post-pandemic recovery which began in 2021. This included financial support for our regional and global ministries equipping national movements to develop godly leaders, grow local funding, pioneer new areas, and establish robust models of governance.

Charitable donations increased by 46%, and charitable expenditure by 20%.

Donations were boosted by a significant one-time gift specifically aimed at stimulating the growth and development of IFES globally, by advancing our ministry in new ways or through particular challenges.

This financial report reflects our combined operations based on the audited financial statements for IFES-UK and IFES/USA, as well as the independently examined financial statements for IFES-Switzerland. The financial statements for IFES entities – based in the UK, USA, and Switzerland – are available upon request.

IFES/USA is an accredited member of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability, a Valued Partner with GuideStar Exchange and has a ‘Give with Confidence’ designation from Charity Navigator. In the UK, IFES is registered with the Fundraising Regulator. 


We are so grateful to everyone who supported us in 2022 through prayer, volunteering or financial giving. Many made sacrifices in order to do so, and on behalf of every student and staff member who has benefitted, we would like to say a heartfelt ‘thank you’.

“Thank you so much for supporting student work in IFES! It is such a joy to hear students and staff from national movements in Latin America discuss the challenges that surround them, to pray together, and to see them get excited about the kingdom of God and the hope that Christ brings to every context. Let us continue to pray for them!”

Gisela Muñoz Cruz, Subregional Coordinator for Spanish-speaking Caribbean, Latin America Regional team

You’re Part of the Team

Thriving in partnership

Without the living testimony of Christian students and graduates, many people might never encounter Jesus, and other believers might drift away while still young.

Without the support of national movements, hundreds of thousands of Christian students would struggle in discipleship and in confidence as witnesses.

Without the support of IFES– acting as accelerator and enabler, providing opportunities for collaboration and learning – national  movements would be slower to develop in effectiveness – or may not exist at all.

Without your support, praying for us, taking an active interest in what we do and giving financially, none of this would be possible.

Partner with us in prayer

Prayer opens us up as individuals, teams, and as a fellowship to God’s leadership, grace and power, and allows us to do our best work. Please pray with us that God will move in the hearts of students around the world and guide everything we do.

Become part of the team when you pray for us, inspired by the regular stories you’ll receive when you sign up, or by our Voices of IFES and Prayerline podcasts available wherever you like to listen.

Draw closer to our international fellowship

Experience for yourself the difference your support makes when you hear directly from our network members at the IFES World Assembly 2023. Be informed and inspired by the recorded sessions and daily highlights from this crucial gathering of 900 students and staff here, and on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts.

Give what you can afford

Without generous partners like you, our reach would be far less extensive. Regular gifts are especially helpful, as they enable us to plan well for the future. You can set up or increase your monthly gift at  

With you, we will keep moving towards our vision of seeing a thriving student witness on every campus in the world. We are driven by the gospel and sustained by a Savior who brings hope to the university. Thank you for praying, connecting, and giving with us as we continue this mission.

Further reports