Dave and Mary Decker
Serving in United States of America
From: United States of America
Who we are:Our vision is to see joyful missionaries effectively spreading a passion for God's glory. Having served for 21 years in West Africa, we've too often they seen effectiveness compromised due to under-staffed and/or under-equipped mission leadership and administration. Our aim is to serve field missionaries by offering quality leadership and administrative support.
We are currently based in Charlotte, North Carolina, where Dave serves with the U.S. Finance department of SIM. Mary is working on projects related to Member Care and Child Safety.
Our years in West Africa included serving in many roles with SIM's Western Africa Area (WAFA), which includes Guinea, Senegal, Liberia and Ivory Coast. SIM has more than fifty missionaries spread across this region, working primarily toward planting the church among ethnic groups with no significant Christian presence.
Dave served as Treasurer for this four-country region for 18 years, and in addition has served as the regional Deputy Director, acting Area Director, and various related leadership and administrative roles. He loves working with students as well, and has spent many hours coaching and playing with kids in softball, football and other sports.
Mary has served as the regional Member Care Facilitator for SIM-WAFA, seeking to encourage her colleagues to continue trusting God, and allowing Him to bring healing in difficult situations. She enjoys helping mission leadership figure out strategies for specific situations, to provide caring support for missionaries as well as efficiency in crisis situations. She also enjoys working with the broader mission community as a facilitator of Sharpening Your Interpersonal Skills workshops, and also facilitating effective networking among missionary women.
We first moved to West Africa in 1989 with our 4 and 1 year old sons, Danny and Joey. We served as boarding home parents for missionary kids in Liberia, and after our first evacuation (due to Liberia's civil war in 1990) Dave was asked to help in the area of finance and administration. Our third son, Jacob was born in 1991. Dave became WAFA Treasurer in 1992.
We were able to return to Liberia with all three sons for a few more years. After our third evacuation from Liberia in 1996, we relocated to Abidjan, Ivory Coast in 1997. We served in Ivory Coast from 1997-2003. Dave continued as WAFA Treasurer, and Mary served as a homeschool mom/teacher.
Mary began to develop an interest in missionary member care, and in 1999 attended West Africa's first Sharpening Your Interpersonal Skills workshop. She attended the SYIS facilitator's training workshop for SYIS, and has facilitated workshops in Nigeria, Burkina Faso, and Togo, as well as several in Ivory Coast. During her time in Ivory Coast, she worked in personnel and member care with SIM. She also enjoyed working with the broader mission community, facilitating the sharing of resources and helping to organize a women's bible study.
As Ivory Coast became less stable, the decision was made to relocate SIM's WAFA office to Dakar, Senegal. We moved there in June of 2004, after a year of home assignment in the States. In 2010, we left Senegal for home assignment when our youngest son Jacob graduated from high school. We've accepted an invitation from SIM USA to work in the home office for the next several years.
What we do:The Deckers are currently based in Charlotte, North Carolina, where Dave serves with the SIM USA Finance department. Mary is working on projects related to Member Care and has been asked to serve as the Child Safety Advocate for SIM USA.
Involved with:Business Ministries/Administration/Leadership
Current Funding: 87%