Jordan, Middle East

JOR01a - Manara International - Sewing Training: Partnership Reports

Other Reports Available:

Print friendly version

Back to Partnership

Report Date: September 9, 2021

Final Report from BHW Partnership Facilitator

much appreciatedSince 2013 BHW has been partnering with Manara International to assist refugees coming into Jordan. Manara's focus in terms of refugees was on Christian refugees fleeing the internal war in Iraq instigated by ISIS.  

Since the internal conflict has died down, the numbers arriving since 2018 are no longer significant and the need has dropped away. Manara has therefore shifted it's focus to the other aspects of its ministry. This includes development of the camp site in Gilead, the development of young Christian leaders and producing resources for Arabic speaking Christians in the Middle East. Included in this is running the Good Bookshop in Amman and a lot of online media production.  

resourcesThese activities have been running for the whole time BHW has been involved with Manara but they are not our focus. For the immediate future we are not investing resources with Manara but will of course continue to consider them great partners and stay in touch. Who knows what new opportunities will open up with them in the future. 

Below is a summary of some of the achievements the partnership has produced and photos of some of the people and activities. 



2011 - BHW personnel first met the leader of Manara at a conference in France. He invited us to come and see what was happening. This was just as the Iraq and Syrian war against ISIS was beginning and support of refugees was not high on the agenda. 

very grateful2012 - BHW Field Director visited Amman and met with the team there. Over a period of four days he gained an insight into what Manara was doing. They were focussing on young people at the camp site in Gilead, a well established preschool, a Christian bookshop and developing a cafe. At that time the first trickles of refugees were entering into Jordan. After that visit communication began through 2012 and 2013 as we tried to establish how we could best partner with them. 

2013 - The war against ISIS in Syria and Iraq escalated and through 2013 the numbers of refugees shifted from a trickle to a flood. Towards the end of 2013 Manara was fully engaged in helping refugees and their focus had landed on Christian refugees from Iraq. They were being targeted by ISIS and they had no option but to run. Towards the end of 2013 BHW engaged with this and made an appeal for the situation. 

meeting people2014 - BHW began generating funds and sending them to assist with the care of refugees. Most was for relief and some for mattresses and blankets to set up 11 apartments for refugees under an evangelical church. 

2015 - The BHW Field Director and Middle East Facilitators visited Manara to see what was happening. We visited the apartments which were about to be occupied, and visited several churches that were hosting the refugees and trying to care for them. We met many of the refugees, interviewed some and attended some meetings with them. 

The wars were still raging, the flood of refugees had become a tsunami by this time and the needs were immense. 

good visit2016 - The Field Director visited Jordan in March with the leaders of Chase Oaks Church, Plano, Texas and saw what was going on. They returned to Texas and raised significant amounts of funds to assist with the refugees. By this time Manara had started a small sewing programme for women and soon after this, BHW began separate support for this programme (JOR01a).  

2016 - The Field Director went back to Jordan again in October to assess the situation and report. The churches were under huge pressure dealing with the huge influx of people. It was approaching winter so there was a need to use funds for heaters and blankets. Regular feeding programmes were operating in several churches and food packages were being regularly distributed. 

tsunami of refugees2017 - In March the Field Director visited with a team from Chase Oaks Church to see the situation on the ground. The war was at it's height in Iraq and the numbers continued to pour into Jordan. We visited refugee camps and churches and interviewed several families. 

2018 - ISIS was defeated in Iraq and the numbers of refugees subsided. BHW continued to provide support as many of the refugees were still trapped in Jordan awaiting repatriation. 

2019 - BHW personnel visited again with a team. It was obvious that the refugee numbers were continuing to decline and the focus of Manara was shifting to the other apsects of their ministry. new skillsThe sewing was continuing with about 15 girls each year being trained. 

This was the final year BHW sent any funds for refugee support. 

2020 - A visit by BHW personnel had to be cancelled because of COVID. The final amounts for the sewing programme were sent.  


Partnership's Influence within the Community

serving the vulnerableHow do you measure this? How do we ever work out the impact? We served the vulnerable when they needed it. The majority have now moved on to other countries and established new lives in Europe, North America and Australia. 

From 2013 - 2020 BHW sent around US$330,000 to help with refugee care. Between 50,000 and 60,000 people were helped and supported. Tens of of thousands of meals were provided. Almost 1,000 heaters were distributed along with thousands of blankets. Shoes, toys and food packs were regularly distributed by Manara. 


Ideas for the Future 

helping outCurrently there are no plans within this BHW / Manara partnership. However, we remain partners, we are communicating, will visit when we are able and are in the vicinity, and perhaps one day there may be further opportunities.   


Prayer and Praise Points

1) That so many people were able to be helped.
2) That there will be no further upheaval in this region that requires relief on this scale.
3) For the Manara team as they develop new ways to serve the church in the Middle East.



A few observations:
- The refugee relief was particularly Isam's vision who I suspect is coming to the end of his active involvement in Manara.
- The younger leaders, Safa and Suhail, have a different vision aimed at young people and are developing great resources for Arabic speaking young people. There doesn't seem at present to be much we can do there.
- We'll stay in touch, keep a watching brief and try to visit when we are able to get to that region again.