June will be the last month that the Christian Children's Fund will be calling itself by its present name.
Starting July 1, the children development organization will continue as ChildFund International following approval of the new name last month by its Board of Directors.
"We will begin our next 70 years with a new name – one that unifies us with others who are working for similar outcomes for children – broadening our reach and strengthening our impact to improve conditions for the world's children," said CCF President and CEO Anne Lynam Goddard months after the organization marked its 70th anniversary.
Though it helps more than 15.2 million children and family members worldwide, CCF has for years been criticized for the use of the word "Christian" in its name and its aggressive marketing to Christians despite admittedly being "non-sectarian."
"While CCF was founded by a minister in 1938 and continues to do good work on the behalf of impoverished children, they are not an organization that attempts to bring the Gospel message along with the relief they offer to needy children," MinistryWatch reported back in May 2004 amid concerns that the organization was misleading many Christians.
"Alternative Christian child sponsorship groups like Compassion International are available to Christian donors that desire to bring both spiritual and physical assistance to children around the world in dire need of both," the watchdog group added.
Despite criticisms over its misleading name, CCF has earned 4 stars from Charity Navigator and touts itself as one of the world's oldest and largest child development organizations as well as one of the first to offer "sponsorships" of individual children.
The organization has also provided nearly $3 billion in assistance to children and family members, with most funding coming from monthly child sponsorships.
"Our tradition of serving children around the world continues," Goddard said. "We are proud of what we have been able to do over the past 70 years and we are excited and optimistic about what we will be able to do in the next 70 years."
Today, CCF works in 31 countries and is affiliated with a network of 11 other international child development organizations that assist children living in poverty.
It was originally founded as China's Children Fund but switched to the Christian Children's Fund after its work expanded outside of China.