Today we are going to focus on praising God for He's been doing in Maramara. We are going to review some of the incredible steps that have been taken over the last 5 years to highlight how God, through World Concern, has dramatically changed this community for the better.
We began partnering with World Concern in 2013 as a part of their "One Village Transformed" program. The goal was to identify a number of villages that were ready for transformation, then walk alongside them to build self-sufficiency all while sharing the hope found only in Jesus.
A number of villages were engaged and only a few were ready for such a partnership. The people of Maramara were resilient and willing to work hard to see transformation. They had leaders who wanted to help and serve their people. Effective development programs, like OVT, are not handouts that create dependency on American resources. Instead, they are opportunities for deep transformation: the village receives training that helps them grow and flourish long after the partnership ends.
The women of Maramara, at that point, were forced to walk hours every single day in order to dig for water in nearby dry river beds. As the season progressed, the water line continued to decrease, forcing them to dig deeper and deeper to find something to drink. The water was filthy and illness was rampant.
The village leaders, in consultation with World Concern, determined that their primary need was fresh water. Experts were brought in to do some testing and installed a water well that to this day provides clean, life-giving water.
In March of 2014, a fire destroyed most of the village, and because of the partnership with Northridge, they were able to survive in a way they had never been able to before. Typically, this kind of fire takes years to recover from and leaves a significant death toll (as people starve or grow ill because grain, food, and livestock are destroyed). But we were able to step in to provide temporary food and supplies, as well as seeds necessary to grow a crop to cover lost food until the next rainy season.
Since those early days, much has changed. Solar panels and a pump have been mounted on the well to allow water to flow easily and quickly without manually pumping. New crops have been introduced to extend the growing season and allow for farming during the dry season. A market has been opened to allow the villagers to open small businesses and sell their goods. Three mills and an oil press have been built to allow the village to produce flour and oil to sell. Two school buildings have been built and three teachers have been hired to provide an education for the children of Maramara to open new opportunities for success.
Let's pray thanks to God today for all He has done!
- Praise God for a dramatic reduction in death due to illness and malnutrition.
- Praise God for the school and the opportunity the teachers have to share about Jesus with the children.
- Praise God for the World Concern team that brings their expertise into the conversation with the village to help spur them on and to provide insights that are physically transformative for this community.
- Praise God that the people of Maramara are willing to engage and take the steps necessary to grow and flourish.
- Praise God for the relationships being built between the teachers, World Concern, and the village.
- Praise God that the village leaders are willing to engage in conversations about Jesus and the Bible.
Thanks for praying!