Unreached Network

Unreached People Groups – An Introduction

At the Unreached Network, we are often asked, “What do you mean by the term ‘Unreached People’? So we wanted to run a little series on our blog to begin to explain, to unpack who these ‘Unreached People’ are that we keep going on about and what we can do to reach them. 

This blog post is part of a series. You can read parts 1, 2 and 3 here

What do you mean by the term ‘Unreached People Groups’ (UPG’s)?

For those who like a good video, Global Frontiers Mission: What is an UPG? have produced a very helpful introduction. 

In summary, there are about 16,000 people groups in the world, and approximately 7,000 of those are ‘Unreached’, meaning they have very limited, if any access to the good news about Jesus. 

Almost 3 billion people fall into this category. For context, the whole of Europe is only 742 million, the whole of Africa is 1.5 billion. 3 billion would be just a little over the population of India and China combined.

Copyright: The Joshua Project


  1. Around 3,000 Unreached People Groups are considered UUPG’s, which means they are Unreached and Unengaged. This means that they have no churches, no believers, no bibles in their language and no-one actively focussed on engaging them. 
  2. 95% of all UPG’s are located in the part of the world we sometimes refer to as the ‘10/40 window’. That’s roughly 10 degrees longitude and 40 degrees latitude. 
  3. Less than 3% of cross cultural missionaries worldwide are working with unreached people groups, and less than 1% of money that is given to mission work worldwide is going to support missions to unreached peoples. 

The 10/40 window where 95% of the world’s UPG’s reside.

How do you think it might feel to be in a country where you would never meet another believer, never be able to go to church, only be able to access some parts of the bible if you were able to get an internet connection and the nearest believer to you lived 700 miles away? 

What is the Unreached Network and what role do YOU have to play in reaching Unreached People Groups? 

The Unreached Network works with Newfrontiers churches to help engage unreached people groups all across the globe.  The Unreached Network is a hub of encouragement, good practice, resources, cross-cultural training, prayer, raising awareness while supporting those who are sending and church planting. Our main agenda is to keep the priority of reaching unreached people groups on the agenda for our Newfrontiers family of churches. 

In this series, we want to dig a bit deeper, explore key questions and apply biblical truth. Come with us as we ask, “Why do we go?”, “Where do we go?” and “Who should go?”  

Do you have more to add? Want to Join us? Connect with us on socials or contact us.

Sources and Further Information

The Unreached Network Cross cultural mission training and resources.





IMB Global Research Department

Global Frontiers Mission: What is an UPG?

Reaching the Unreached (VIDEO) – What’s it going to take? 

This blog post is part of a series. You can read parts 1, 2 and 3 here