Zambia, Africa

ZAM13b - Bethsada Mercy Ministry: Partnership Reports



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Report Date: August 16, 2022

Report from BHW Zambia Partnership Facilitator Following Visit

Key people: Dan Bullock (Zambian Director)
                    Gerad van Asselt
                    Melvin Chione (African Director)

great timeWe attended the Love Africa Conference 2022 at the Kabwe base and talked with Dan Bullock and Melvin about the partnership and events going on.

Recent Events

Missionaries

The funds Bright Hope World gives are used to help support missionaries that have been sent out to other countries from Zambia, and some of the support staff that work at the OM base in Zambia.

Most missionaries that are sent do have some amount of support, so the fund we give too often helps them with one off costs such as medical emergencies. There are a few missionaries that really struggle for support, and they are given a regular monthly amount.

There is still a push for the missionaries to become more self-sustaining. A global initiative was introduced a few years ago to help set up missionaries but this has so far had limited success. Mutita Kashimoto has been engaged to try and help with this area, especially in the area of farming and missionaries raising capital while working on his own farm.

In talking with Melvin (OM Africa Director), they have been seeing a lot of opportunities in the area of farming, not only to provide support for the missionaries in their ministry but as a way of entering the community and opening doors to share the gospel. OM is very interested in training more missionaries in Foundations for Farming. This may require training in-country for leaders, bringing them back to the Kabwe base to be trained, or sending them to Harare, Zimbabwe for training at the Foundations for Farming base. They are interested in engaging with Bright Hope World for follow-up visits after the initial training to help the farming get established. The three countries initially targeted are Niger, Chad, and Ghana.

There are a couple coming to work with OM Zambia from Switzerland who have been involved in sustainable agriculture in South America for several years. Dan is hopeful that they will restart the demonstration garden at OM Zambia. The garden has very large Musungu trees that were planted 12 years ago, which are known as the fertilizer tree, taking nitrogen from the air and putting it into the soil. It is great to grow crops under these as the trees lose their leaves in the rainy season. We discussed the possibility of the new people having input from local Foundations for Farming people to ensure they understand the local context. 

 

Bethsada Mercy Ministry (ZAM13b)

changing mindsetsPeter and Brenda Chila are still managing the ministry for disabled children. Peter is currently on training in South Africa, learning about disabled sports ministry, so we couldn’t meet him. We did meet with Brenda who said things are going “just ok”.

They now have a second new premises in the Makalulu township of Kabwe caring for more children. They have started a sensitization course for local churches running a three-week course to try and address the stigmatism towards disabled children in the area. They are also running these courses within all the ministries of OM Zambia to make sure people are making any programme accessible for people with disabilities.

The picture is of the Bethsada wheelchair basketball team.

 

Impact Multiplied

good income generatorThis business model that has created flats and rentals in Kabwe continues to grow. The flat that Bright Hope World sponsored at the Aroha complex continues to help fund the activities at the Makwati community school. 

The Aroha complex supported a total of US$5,291 last year, of which the Bright Hope World flat provided a quarter.

OM still have land at the Maia complex where they are planning to build more flats. The cost of another flat in the complex is US$30,000 dollars and would provide a return to OM of US$3,000 after all costs of tax, administration, and maintenance fees, to be used to help fund OM ministries.


 

Personal Stories

Costa and Katie

caring for peopleCosta and his wife Katie have been with OM since 2015. They have three children. Costa is involved with both financial development and people care, and Katie helps to manage the training programmes.

The people care programmes are put in place to help the missionaries work through the “storms of life”. Costa says the main area the missionaries struggle with is how to support themselves in the field and look after their families. They help them through these times by reminding them that they may never know the reasons they are going through storms, but God is faithful and has his purposes. They aim to communicate via technology on a monthly basis. 

They also have contact with the local sending Zambian churches to encourage them to support the missionaries more. Costa feels that the churches do have capacity but tend to only focus on what is in front of them, especially where they have a paid pastor. Sometimes the church might buy the pastor a brand-new vehicle for their birthday, instead of looking to support the missionaries they have sent out.

For financial development Costa helps the leaders write up financial plans of the ministries, create the financial reports, and use the information to try and engage more local church support.

Katie's role in training sees her lecturing, coaching, and mentoring, and involved in the curriculum development.

One issue they are facing is how, when, and where to take a break from the busyness of the role.

 

Amos Sakulanda 

Amos is married to Elizabeth and has four children, with another about to be born. His family has moved to Chipata where they are missionaries with OM.

Amos grew up as an orphan, his mother died when he was a baby. His father struggled to provide for the children, so they struggled to live and go to school, but Amos feels this time was preparing him for the desire to help people in the same circumstances. He managed to complete Grade 12, but it was a struggle. He enjoyed going to Sunday school and youth camps.

After finishing Grade 12 he was thinking to go and train as a medical clinic officer, but in 2013 he visited OM and felt God was calling him there. He completed the Discipleship and Missions Course, but afterwards felt the need to try and go to support his own family until 2016. He was growing and selling tomatoes.

In 2016 he decided to come back to OM and repeated his training. In 2019 he moved to Chipata to help with the outreach team there. He started a hospital ministry where he obtained permission from the hospital board to visit anyone who was sick in the hospital. Many of the people in hospital had no hope so he would pray with them, encourage them, and teach them about Jesus. He would ask God to heal them, and in many cases some miracles have occurred. Through this ministry Amos says around 200 people have come to know God. As some patients have been discharged, he links them up with local churches to help them with their faith.

He is also involved in rural outreach in the area, where there are many issues of witchcraft and early child marriages. 

 

Nephat Banda

serving in TanzaniaBanda has just returned from a two-month mission trip to Tanzania, where he helped 18 local churches with crusades into their local communities preaching the gospel and releasing people from demons.

Growing up Banda was orphaned at an early age. He loved school but the family he stayed with were unable to provide for his school fees. He decided to start doing some piece work for people. It meant that he would complete a grade of school in one year, then the next year take a year off school to work and save to fund the next grade of school the following year. He did this until Grade 5, until the family had some funds to help him.

After school he managed to get a job working as a cook in an Indian shop, but that employment soon ended. He had heard about the OM base in Kabwe and that they might be employing staff so visited there. He was told no, there is no work, but you should come and train in discipleship. He couldn’t afford this but after some time, he went back again and was told “sorry no work” but they took his number down. A month later they called him, and he ended up being employed as the cook on the base starting from 2012.

A man from Germany who came to the base got to know Banda and offered to sponsor him through the Discipleship and Missions training, which he accepted. He was trained in 2013 to 2014. In 2015 he took up a role with OM Mercy House that helps vulnerable children in the Makululu township. There are about 200,000 people that live in this area of Kabwe. They help provide children with school fees, uniforms, a feeding programme, and other school requirements, while the children still live at their own homes in the community.

Banda was involved in crusades in the Makululu township, going out preaching God's word and praying for people. One lady he talked too was saved, and they started a house group at the lady’s place that quickly grew to 15 people coming after three months’ time. Now that group has become a church of over 100 people. 

He had a calling to go to Tanzania in 2015, and worked towards that, finally getting there in May 2022. Now he is back for the OM Love Africa conference but is planning to go back to Tanzania with his wife Mercy. He has five children.

 

Chad

making a differenceSimon Bistroi (Field leader and sports ministry) and Idriss Adoum (Children and farming ministry) have been working in Chad since 2014.

Idriss is a local from a Muslim background who became a Christian in 2002 and has been working with OM since 2014. He is married with eight children. Simon was married in 2017 and has one child.

In Chad it is very hot, up to 46 degrees from March to May. It cools down a little in the rainy season from July to October. The rains are not very consistent causing some crop failures. The main crops grown in Chad are millet, sorghum, maize, and karkati hibiscus tea. The vegetables are okra, tomatoes, aubergine, peppers, onion, and garlic.

OM has four plots of land where they have gardens. Two are 3 hectares, and two are 1.5 hectares. They use just a small portion of this land to create gardens. Each garden has an OM sponsored bore hole (50m to 70m deep), with a diesel generator and electric pump that fills tanks to supply the local communities with water and to water the gardens. They charge some farmers to provide water for their livestock, but for the rest of the community the water is free.

They have been surprised at the community’s response to the gardens and bore holes. Some are given jobs to help in the gardens, and other's small plots. It has given the OM team the opportunity to disciple people and to tell them about the gospel as they work. 

They would like to have more bore holes at each garden site to help with the watering and provide the communities with more water. Fencing of the garden areas with barbed wire is also required to keep the grazing animals out of the crops.

They have another man who is coming to Chad to help the OM team who has been trained in agriculture. They are interested in using the Foundations for Farming methods to help with the very dry sandy hot soil. 

 

Plans for the Future

OM continues to make an impact in many communities. We will investigate if contributing a capital sum for another flat at the Maia complex and reducing our yearly missionary support would be beneficial. 

The Foundations for Farming request that came from Melvin will be interesting to look at once they come up with more detail about how they want to do this. We will wait for them to communicate, especially after the new people from Switzerland arrive.

In the meantime, the budget for both OM Zambia and Bethsada will remain the same.