Samira, Alia, and Layla’s Story: Syrian Refugees in Lebanon

Post a Comment » Written on December 17th, 2014     
Filed under: Community Development, Special Projects
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Week 6 Samira, Alia, and LaylaFACT:

The refugee camp in Lebanon is very crowded. Yet more people come every day, fleeing from the war and violence in their homeland of Syria. It’s nothing like the homes and apartments people are used to. There is food and water, some medical help, and a couple of hours of school offered each day.

STORY:

Samira, Alia, and Layla are best friends. Samira and Alia are eleven years old, and Layla is ten. Layla says, “I was very scared and sad to leave my country and I didn’t want to leave but we had to  because of the bombing.” Alia feels sad about leaving Syria. For her it’s hard to come to a strange place and a strange country. “I don’t like living in a tent,” she says, “In winter the rain will fill the inside and we will have to go outside and wait for them to fix it.” Samira says, “I was so scared. I miss living in my beautiful house. All my cousins still live in Syria and
I cry always. I am afraid they will get hurt.”

Samira, Alia, and Layla do most of the chores like sweeping out the tent or washing the floors, dishes, and clothes because their older sisters are working in the fields. Mostly the girls love to play and talk with each other. Samira likes that Alia can always make her laugh. They don’t have toys but sometimes they play with a rope. All three girls are lucky that their parents send them to school a couple of hours each day. Otherwise they would never learn how to read and write.

When the electricity goes out at night, each family lights a candle and the family sits together. Because the camp is so crowded and they only have plastic or cloth for walls, it gets very loud at night. “I close my ears and try to sleep,” says Samira “but I feel upset and then my ears are hurting me.” When Layla has a bad dream she says she “runs to her mom and sleeps next to her.” She feels
safe with her mom and dad.

REFLECTION:

How is life for Samira, Alia, and Layla the same or different from your life? If you were in their situation, what would be the hardest thing for you? What are ways you have helped others? How does Jesus help us? Look at a map and find Syria and Lebanon.

RESPONSE:

Pray for the girls and all the children at the camp. Your offering will help Samira, Alia, and Layla along with the other children in the camp.

 

Weekly, we will be posting the materials from the Kids Helping Kids: Refugee curriculum for your ease on our blog. You can access this project and learn more here. On our website you will find helpful resources for these stories including a powerpoint, prayer cards, and maps. Give to this project here.




Standing against Exploitation in Mexico

Post a Comment » Written on December 15th, 2014     
Filed under: Community Development
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A group of leaders from the Covenant Church of Mexico have formed an organization to fight abuse and exploitation. The leaders of Ministering to the Abused and Exploited in Mexico (MAEM) include Marisol Martinez, president of the Covenant Church of Mexico, Covenant missionary Janice Kelly, and ten other women and men ranging in age from young adults to retirees.

MAEM_logotipo-1In its early stage MAEM is focusing on:
• raising awareness of domestic abuse and violence and their connection to human trafficking;
• providing relevant resources to pastors and other leaders;
• equipping pastors and other leaders to respond to instances of exploitation and abuse in their churches and communities;
• helping individuals and families heal from abuse;
• and equipping pastors and leaders to train others.

 
According to Janice Kelly, those being trained are “receiving biblical instruction that teaches that God’s image lies at the core of what it means to be human and that abuse is a perversion of the image of God.” CWR is grateful to be able to partner with MAEM as they carry out this vital ministry.




Leave a Legacy with CWR

Post a Comment » Written on December 12th, 2014     
Filed under: General

A charitable bequest is one of the easiest ways you can leave a lasting impact on the ministries of the church. You may want to share this suggested language with your legal advisor:

“The Evangelical Covenant Church,
c/o Covenant Trust Company,
8303W. Higgins Road,
Chicago, IL 60631-2903,
designated for Covenant World Relief.”

For more information, contact us at cwr@covchurch.org.




Gatwech and Nyayual’s Story: South Sudanese Refugees in Ethiopia

Post a Comment » Written on December 10th, 2014     
Filed under: Community Development, Special Projects
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Week 5 Gatwech and NyayualFACT:

Tierkitde, a camp in Ethiopia, hosts more than 37,000 South Sudanese refugees who came from the Upper Nile and Jonglei states of South Sudan. These refugees are mainly from the Nuer, Dinka, Shiluk, and Murlee tribes. The fighting has injured many of the refugees. They all lack basic needs.

STORY:

Exploding bombs from the war in South Sudan left three-year-old Gatwech, his five-year-old sister Nyayual, and their mother, Mary, seriously injured. Everyone else in their family was killed.

United Nations workers took Gatwech, Nyayual, and their mother to a UN Mission hospital where they were treated for their injuries. Gatwech lost his ear and can only see out of one eye. Nyayual is still in shock and is deaf because the explosions destroyed her eardrums. After partially recovering from their injuries they had no home to go back to and decided to travel to Ethiopia. Mary, Gatwech, and Nyayual walked for two weeks until they arrived at the Ethiopian refugee camp, Tierkitde. Continue Reading »




A Water Buffalo Provides New Hope

Post a Comment » Written on December 8th, 2014     
Filed under: Community Development
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How a gift from the Covenant Cares catalog changed a family’s future

Shiv Chandra with his family and new water buffalo in India.

Shiv Chandra with his family and new water buffalo in India.

My name is Shiv Chandra and I am from Bihar, India. Born in a low-caste family, I am reminded every day that I am poor, marginalized, and untouchable. Poverty wipes away any happiness my family has had. Because of my caste, I have not had an opportunity to go to school, to learn a trade, or even to read. It is a challenge to take care of my family members. Many times I have thought about fleeing my village, but I have not done so because of my small children.

Recently, I met Jitendra from the Hindustani Covenant Church who prayed with us about all our struggles and shared from Scripture. After a few meetings with him, he suggested that a water buffalo would bring change in our lives. It turned out to be a bright hope for all of us.

The animal is like a new blessing for us. We are now taking proper care of it and the water buffalo is giving 14 liters of milk per day. We are selling milk in the market and earning some profit. Receiving this water buffalo is like an impossible dream coming true.

We are grateful to Jitendra and the organization for the noble work done for my family and me. And now, when the buffalo gives birth to a calf, the new water buffalo will be passed along to another  family.

Learn how to make a Covenant Cares gift at CovChurch.org/covcares.