John Partington reported last Sunday on the completion of the work he and the Thames Valley churches of Christ have been involved with. This video gives a flavour of the official opening ceremony.
Albert May announced the appointment of Michelle Cheema to fulfil the role of researching how we, as a church community, can best fulfil our desire to help the needy around where we live and minister. Here are some thoughts from both Albert and Michelle.
“As we move into 2019 we’re all very excited about the prospect of being able to serve more in our local communities. For the first time in our history we will use our annual special gift for the poor to provide assistance to programmes in our very own regions. Because our church covers a wide area the range of needs is large so a lot of thought needs to be given to what will be the best solutions in different regions. With funds that we have collected that are in surplus to what we wanted to send Nepal in 2018 we will finance about 4-5 person months of part-time work to research, present, design and above all agree with all stakeholders local programmes to serve the needy that we can all be really excited about. We’re delighted that Michelle will undertake this work. Michelle will be aided by Albert whom has led our assistance to the needy for almost 20 years.”
“I am super excited to be given this opportunity to be the first Thames Valley Church of Christ community outreach coordinator. I am looking forward to seeing how God works in multiplying our efforts through sustainable Christ-centred projects throughout our different church locations. We have an amazing church where each and every member have something special to offer the poor and vulnerable in their local community. To God be the glory!”
Please be praying for Michelle to be given insight and wisdom in this role. Feel free to ask her or Albert for more details, and please offer any suggestions you have.
God bless, Malcolm
JP brought us an update on his time in Nepal and the project to which we are contributing.
Recently JP gave an inspiring and informative presentation on the work of HOPE worldwide in Nepal. He told us what had already been done, and what the vision was for the future.
His involvement most directly is in guiding the building of a factory.
Our part in Thames Valley will be to raise money to assist the farmers in making the most of the factory.
The way we will do this is by taking a collection in July, the first £30,000 of which will go to supplying micro-loans to the farmers.
All the details are in the attached TV Gift for the Poor.
Here is the TV Pledge sheet.
If you have any questions, please ask John himself. We are very grateful to him for his enthusiasm, compassion and vision.
God bless, Malcolm
Galatians 2: 10 – “All they asked was that we should continue to remember the poor, the very thing I was eager to do.”
Sharon sent this report through about the continuing work with “The learning tree” project.
Just click on the link.
Here is some news from Steve Clark in Zambia. Steve writes…
“A semi-regular news update for our staff, volunteers and partners, about our work to serve the poor in Zambia.
It’s exciting to announce that The HOPE worldwide Learning Tree preschool is now open. We have 6 classrooms, a dining room, 2 outdoor play areas and a kitchen that are all now ready to use. From the 11th July we have been able to advertise the school, both in the local community and further afield in Lusaka, for Children from 6 months to 6 years. A big thank you to all of you who have been involved in helping to make this idea become a reality. Please find us here: facebook
We’re looking forward to our next group of visitors to our projects here in Zambia. On August 19th 5 volunteers will join us for 10 days, from churches in London. They’ll be joined by the more familiar faces, our (not so!) old friends, John and Rose Partington. Three of the group have direct experience of working in schools or with young children. They’ll spend time strengthening our programs, and the organisation. Perfect timing for the opening of the school.
Our ViiV Healthcare funded HIV education program is gathering momentum. Over the last 2 months we have trained, alongside the Ministry of Health, 40 youths in HIV prevention and advocacy. A further 24 women have been trained in Safe Motherhood best practices. These 5-day courses give the youths and women the information and techniques they need to spread accurate information about HIV prevention into the heart of the townships and compounds in which HwwZ works. Over the next 2 years we will reach about 8000 women and youths with these messages.
Finally, we’re excited to be able to announce that the Dreams Innovation Challenge initiative, funded by PEPFAR, the Gates Foundation, Gilead Sciences and others, have provisionally award us funding for our program: “After-School Program to Inspire girls to Resume or complete their Education (ASPIRE)”. This program will be delivered in collaboration with the Zambia Open Community School, and will use recent innovations in technology and teaching methods to help to keep girls in secondary school. Girls’ education is often called the social vaccine against HIV because of the significant reduction in HIV incidence among better-educated girls and young women. Increasing girls access to and retention in education reduces their risk of contracting HIV. Better educated adolescent girls and young women tend to have more knowledge about how HIV is contracted and are better prepared to prevent transmission. This 2 year program will help to support 1,200 girls to either return to, or to continue to participate, in secondary school. Visit by clicking the link here.
Please keep all our staff and volunteers in your prayers, as they continue to work in the communities and compounds. This is especially so during the upcoming elections on the 11 August – please keep safe.
If you have any news that you’d like to share in the next update, please do let me know. Photos welcome too.
God bless, Steve”
Albert and his team introduced tremendous opportunities for us to participate in the HOPE work going on in Zambia. Have a look at the attached engagement opportunities document. Please read it and complete the questionnaire at the back.
Here is a link to a web survey page you can use if you’d prefer it: survey.
Recent research conducted at Stanford University and published in the Lancet Journal highlighted a serious public health issue that we see at the Sihanouk Hospital Center of HOPE every day.
The article showed that high out of pocket costs, such as the funds spent with local pharmacies and on private healthcare providers, was the most common correlating factor in the presence of multi-drug resistant infections. These types of infections require sophisticated antibiotics and are costly to treat. We’re at the final stretch of a fundraising campaign to help us provide effective drugs for very sick patients. You can help today for only $10.
Poun Saran, a 59-year-old widow who arrived at our doors barely conscious and feverish, was unsuccessfully treated at two other facilities before coming to us. Both of the clinics charged her, requiring collateral on her family farm in Svay Reing province. After she arrived at the Emergency Department, SHCH conducted extensive laboratory testing to reveal that Saran had Type 1 diabetes, hypertension and melioidosis- an infectious disease common with farmers in Cambodia.
With effective diagnostics, antibiotic medications and 3 weeks of hospitalization, Saran is returning to home. She has a long path ahead to maintain her health.
Without the effective interventions of SHCH, Saran would have certainly died. SHCH’s team of clinicians, laboratory professionals and research partners are on the front lines of the fight to determine antimicrobial resistance and provide effective treatment. Your contribution to our current fundraising campaign for antibiotic drugs will make the biggest difference if received before September 15. Please donate today.
Dr. Thai Sopheak
Interim Executive Director
Steve, JP & Albert tell us more about the work of HOPE worldwide in Zambia, the spiritual perspective on the needs of others and plans for the collection to be taken later this year.