Zambia Spring Update
Zambia, Church Partners
Livingstone Christian Centre
The LCC Church identifies the most vulnerable children in the community as they travel throughout the city sharing the Good News of the Gospel. The church registers children for school when they cannot afford to attend, offers food packs to malnourished children, and operates a reading program for children who are falling behind.
Rev. Imasiku & his wife Cindy recently shared stories and inspiration from Hope Story’s work and ministry in Livingstone, Zambia with Livingstone Christian Centre (LCC).
Cindy, a teacher, speaks about the Saturday literacy program she runs. It was created by happy accident. Passing children saw her reading to her 2-year-old son Benjamin outside, and joined in. There were so many school-aged children who could not read that she started the literacy program. At school, some children drop through the cracks, due to lack of resources, with up to 72 children in every class, and never learn to read.
She says, “Sometimes I have to be brave for the children” to take them from the place where they are in life to where they need to be “to walk that mile with them.” She runs JBQ (Junior Bible Quiz) to encourage kids to learn God’s word through this gently competitive and fun program.
LCC is also providing counselling for guardians – frequently grandparents, or a single mother, or an older child leading a household. The strain of the last year has taken an emotional toll.
Hunger is another significant concern during the current crisis. Some children show up to school with just a container of glucose and water as their only lunch. The church provides a balanced and nutritious lunch for these kids.
Calvary Church distributes school fees for children who cannot attend school and provides food packs to families suffering from malnutrition.
Calvary has managed to continue their Bible Explorer program – albeit with fewer children – and have distributed the solar lights to children lacking electricity in their homes and unable to read or study at night. Pastoral staff also spend time counselling and mentoring young people and families, as many are out of work now with the collapse of tourism.
The new Calvary Community Centre will continue the church’s education-strengthening work, with after-school tutoring and computer skills training with some of the parents too, to give them the ability to re-train enough to re-enter the workforce. It offers hope that a community heavily dependent on one industry (tourism and the service jobs it creates) will be able to acquire transferrable job skills.
And COVID-19 relief provided by the generosity of Hope Story supporters has made a world of difference for many struggling families.
Chabota (featured in the photograph, with her mother) is one of many children benefitting from the stability of the Calvary Church community. The supervision she receives at Calvary Christian School has kept her little person safe in so many ways – since at-risk children like Chabota can end up alone on the streets if they have no safe place to go.
We are grateful for the ministry of Calvary Church and ask your prayers for them as they plan creatively for a strong future for their community. Please pray for the capacity to bring food relief for vulnerable families and for the creation of Calvary Community Centre.
Mongu Evangelical Church
Mongu Evangelical Church provides holistic care to orphans and vulnerable children with a focus on education. In 2009 they established Mongu Christian Academy for at-risk children ranging in age from 4-7 years old. They also provide school fees for older children in the community when they can’t afford to go to school.
Because of the support of Hope Story supporters, Mongu Evangelical Church was able to provide 121 families in the community with emergency COVID-19 food relief. Thank you!
There are still families in need, and they refer people who show up at their door to social services – only to find out that the local social services agency is overloaded and is referring people to Mongu Evangelical Church for help!
Please pray for...
LCC’s outreach in Livingstone, and for creative ways to continue nurturing literacy, especially after this year of disrupted schooling.
Mongu Evangelical’s work in the community – for capacity and resources.
Strength to continue their good work – with growing needs in the community, encouragement in new plans for long-term alleviation of child poverty, and spiritual nourishment through these times.