About

Our Mission…

The mission of Interfaith Outreach Association is to relieve distress and improve the quality of life for our neighbors in need by providing programs that offer education, guidance, and support. IOA serves as a vehicle for interfaith cooperation in Central Virginia whereby congregations become members of IOA and enter into partnerships with each other, their respective denominations, and community agencies to accomplish its mission. IOA serves the cities of Lynchburg and Bedford and the counties of Amherst, Appomattox, Bedford, and Campbell.

Our History…

Interfaith Outreach Association (IOA) began as a program of Lynchburg Covenant Fellowship (LCF) in 1966. The Reverends Bev Cosby of Church of the Covenant, Doug Oldenburg of Covenant Presbyterian Church, James Pannell of Jackson Street United Methodist Church and Alex Robertson of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church joined together to help meet needs in our community. Through their efforts, a program that provided tutoring for inner city children was established. As additional needs became apparent, IOA formed its own 501(c)(3) agency in 1982, known as Kum Ba Yah Association. The name was changed to Interfaith Outreach Association in 1991 to more clearly state the Association’s mission to work in an interfaith effort.

Our success in developing programs that respond to the needs of our neighbors is reflected in the spin off of agencies that began as programs of IOA, including the Greater Lynchburg Habitat for Humanity, the Adult Care Center, and the Free Clinic of Central Virginia’s MedsHelp prescription program. IOA continues to develop programs and partner with other agencies to accomplish its mission.