About NFI


photo_overviewNeighbors First founder and president, Mark Carter, is an architect in private practice and has designed a variety of building types over many years. He has also organized and implemented projects to assist those in need both locally and internationally. The Neighbors First board of directors is "hands-on", all of whom have building experience and a strong history of cross-cultural missions. Most importantly, the leadership of Neighbors First is passionate about serving the Lord Jesus Christ through serving people in need.

How We Work

photo_howNeighbors First is dedicated to helping people in need, by way of building projects and basic needs development projects. Because we are project oriented, we recognize that NFI may not have a presence in a particular area for an extended time. For this reason we intentionally partner with other missions organizations, groups or churches that have established a Christ-centered work of physical and spiritual help for the people we also hope to serve. In this way, we hope to build hope both now and into the future.


Where We Work

whereweworkNeighbors First Inc. is headquartered in Northern Maine, USA. NFI works throughout this large, rural area of the State and, with international partnerships, also reaches to Central and South America. Through financial donations to NFI, building materials are purchased and with the help of many volunteer workers and trades-people, construction projects continue to help those in need.

Statement of Faith

  • We believe the Bible to be the inspired, authoritative, and only infallible Word of God and that all scripture is the final authority for life and faith.
    II Timothy 3:15-17; John 17:17; 2 Peter 1:19-21

  • We believe that there is one God, the infinite and perfect creator of all things who exists in three distinct persons- Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, who are one in nature, attributes, power, and glory.
    Matthew 28:19; John 1:1; Ephesians 4:4-6


Why We Work

photo_whyA "neighbor" is generally considered someone who lives close to you. In the Bible, Jesus defines our "neighbors" as anyone in this world, stranger or acquaintance, that is in true need and that our response should be to selflessly give our time and resources to help.

We at Neighbors First, Inc. see and understand that many people have true physical needs. NFI was established to help meet those construction related needs and to "build hope".



photo_leadershipBoard of Directors

Mark G. Carter - President

Mark is a licensed Architect having worked in the profession since 1981 and in private practice since 1993. He has organized and led numerous volunteer construction projects throughout Northern Maine and Central America. Neighbors First, Inc. is born of the desire to extend God's hand of compassion by designing and building to meet the needs of our poor and marginalized neighbors, whether near or far.

Patrick Ballard - Treasurer

Patrick is the owner of a full service general contracting business, having worked in the construction field since 1988 and as a business owner since 1998. Patrick has been involved with short-term missions efforts in Guatemala, Africa, and in Northern Maine. He is also on the governing board of a local youth camp.

Rick Duncan - Secretary

Rick has been a Funeral Director for over 30 years. His desire to share Christ's love by meeting the physical needs of people who suffer from poverty has led him to Mexico, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Africa. He is also the president of a local Hospice organization.

Dave Whitaker - Director

Dave has worked in the produce business for over 30 years and is currently the vice-president of Maine Farmers Exchange. He has been extensively involved with construction related work in Guatemala and Nicaragua, as well as local relief and ministry work. Dave is also an active youth leader.

Josh Cheney - Director

Josh is a real estate agent and information systems consultant. Josh serves on the board of directors of a local youth camp and has worked on relief and construction related projects in Haiti and Guatemala.

Gabe Cheney - Director

Gabe is a National Guardsman, and owner of a small construction company. Gabe has worked on numerous construction related projects in Central America and in Northern Maine. He is also on the board of directors of a local youth camp, and an active youth leader.

Across the street, across town, or across the globe … There are people enduring poverty and true need; whether it be lack of food, clean water, shelter, access to education or medical care. In the Bible, Jesus explains that those who are in need are our neighbors and we are to put our neighbor’s needs before our own… Neighbors First.