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Christians suffering oppression and violence

The following projects help Christians suffering oppression and violence.

EGYPT

PROJECT: Strength To Stand Groups

The Strength to Stand (S2S) project has been established to increase resilience of the local church and to protect the most deprived and vulnerable Christian women in Ezbeth el Nakhel. S2S groups have been contributing to the improvement of women’s spiritual and social development and to a lesser extent economic and leadership skills in the community.

Spiritual growth takes place as women are exposed to the Bible at every S2S group meeting. They are coached in leading devotions for fellow group members and to develop a prayer life. They engage in prayer for one another, make efforts to share Biblical values within their families, and recognise that they a valuable part in church life.

PROJECT: Hope for MENA

The main aim of this project is to share God’s love in practical ways to persecuted, marginalized and destitute Christian families.  In partnership with local churches, Hope4MENA seeks and serves families who face extreme poverty. By extending our hands and offering compassionate assistance, the Lord enables us to help people move above the poverty line and accordingly support their families and assist in developing the community. As we work through the churches, these people are encouraged to attend their churches and take part in serving others in need.

PAKISTAN

PROJECT: Lahore Evangelical Ministries – Strength to Stand Groups

Strength to Stand (S2S) Groups were established to increase resilience and to protect the most persecuted, deprived and vulnerable Christian women in Pakistan. The S2S groups have been contributing significantly to female empowerment and help with alleviation of poverty in Pakistan. The S2S groups have been contributing to the improvement of women’s spiritual, social, economic and leadership skills in the community.  Women have the opportunity to access literacy to be able to read the word of God by meeting together regularly. They engage in prayer for one another to increase their faith and recognise that they are a valuable part in church life. S2S Groups also offer socio-economic development by promoting saving and teaching financial management skills. They also offer improved access to the S2S savings and credit services. S2S Groups aim to improve living standards and enable members to reap economic benefits out of mutual help, solidarity and joint responsibility. S2S Groups also give opportunities to develop leadership skills.

Read two testimonies which illustrate how the Strength to Stand ministry has helped two people, Waqar and Perveen.

NIGERIA

PROJECT: Stefanos Foundation – Love In Action

The aim of this project is to provide relief materials for 3600 affected families in the ethno-religious violence in Nigeria covering a span of three years. This involves providing food and non-food supplies to affected areas, targeted to reach Christian families affected in the conflict. The provisions will be packed in a plastic bucket that will sustain an average family of 6 members for up to four weeks. The Relief Program will take place in different regions affected by Fulani militia attacks (most recent places include Benue, Kaduna and Enugu States) and to Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Abuja. Each instance of the relief distribution will target to reach 300 households. The plan is to handle at least 4 distributions per year so this project should cover a total of 12 distributions to reach 3600 families in the 3 years. Historically, (2019) Stefanos were able to supply food and non-food to 4 areas (in Kaduna State, Kogi State, Zamfara State and Bauchi State) where there had been attacks. About 900 families in total received a bucket of aid which assisted them for about 4 weeks.

KENYA

PROJECT: International Aid Services Kenya – Pastoral and Practical Support for Muslim Background Believers

This project aims to support Muslim Background Believers (MBBs) in fledgeling fellowships in Nairobi by giving them financial assistance and helping them to a position where they are better able to support themselves thereby encouraging them in their faith and encouraging them to be generous with others.

The effects of persecution are bearing heavily on this community. Many are in very difficult financial positions and are suffering. Primarily this project will alleviate their suffering and the hope is that this will encourage their spiritual development and increase engagement in the Church. Many of the MBBs in Nairobi cannot get employment because of their limited educational background, lack of family support and/or their refugee status.

Funding from this initiative has also helped one of the Church leaders to complete their Masters Degree and to start two small motorbike taxi businesses which provides him with support for his family and is also intended to be a test business that they can suggest to other believers.

Read more here: Ysuf, Asad and Yasmin’s Stories.

SRI LANKA

PROJECT: National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka – Legal Aid

The main aim of this project is to assist with both legal aid and advocacy costs whilst also meeting local government officials, implementing advocacy and lobbying on behalf of religious freedom issues with the goal of furthering religious freedom in Sri Lanka.

For more than a decade there has been a growing trend of persecution against Christians who barely account for 1% of the total population in Sri Lanka. This project enables the  National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka (NCEASL) to serve Christian pastors, from low income backgrounds, who are wrongfully implicated in legal matters by villagers who oppose the construction of Churches or the conducting of prayer meetings at homes.

Additionally there is also the challenge of State authorities misapplying the law to damage Church-related activities. From church property being damaged to social media threats against churches and pastors, the challenges of navigating through these issues is ever more difficult and complex. 

In the previous project year 138 Church workers were supported. The project was also able  to provide legal aid to 28 churches during the project period. Some churches have multiple cases and a large majority of the cases ran throughout the year. The cases supported were from all parts of Sri Lanka

See here for an example of a case which this project supported.

PROJECT: National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka – Evangel Care

This project provides scholarship support for 250 children from persecuted and marginalized homes. By regular monitoring it ensures that the children are going to school, passing their exams and progressing in their education.  It also seeks to meet special needs of the children that may arise – spiritual support (through prayer and teaching), psychosocial support (counselling for children experiencing trauma) and any special and serious medical needs that may arise.

See here for an example of a case which this project supported.

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