UPDATED August 12, 2020
India – Following the coronavirus positive test result of a security guard working at the main campus for the rescued children in India, each child and staff member are currently being tested. 381 children tested positive, and every one of them have recovered! 512 pastors have also tested positive, and 16 have passed away. Please pray for their loved ones as they are mourning this loss. Please also pray that God will bring healing, and that the coronavirus will be defeated. Additionally, the government has implemented “red zones” based on where active COVID cases are occurring, and these areas change frequently. Our partners are working around these zones and getting special permission to drill wells. Once the “red zones” are lifted, our partners will be able to begin hosting medical clinics again. Although the campus was once a red zone, it has been officially cleared, however the cases are still rather high so medical clinics have been moved to a neighboring county for the month of August.
Liberia – Travel between counties is restricted, but our crews have received special permission from the government to drill water wells. Our crews are now working closer to home but still providing much needed clean water and the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Sierra Leone – Our teams are continuing to drill wells as normal, however travel is restricted from county to county. Our drill crews have dedicated themselves to bringing clean water and have not been able to go home to their families for months. There is also a country wide curfew of 5:00 PM each night. Evangelism has switched from large group Jesus Film showings to house-to-house evangelism with groups of ten or less.
The coronavirus pandemic has changed the world as we know it. But, we’re all in this together. As our faithful supporters, we want to keep you up to date on the affects of the virus on our partners and work throughout India, Sierra Leone, and Liberia. We are so thankful for your prayers and continued support during this uncertain time.
Throughout the course of the coronavirus pandemic, our partners were faced with unexpected trials as the prices for food tripled within just a few short days. Following the initial shock, prices continued to rise as the country began to shut down. It became increasingly difficult for our partners to purchase food. But, thanks to our incredible donors, our partners were equipped to face this pandemic and care for the children fully over the last couple of months. With a lock down ordered, our partners received passes from the police to be able to travel to the children with supplies. India was under lock down until May 17th, however our partners received permission to begin drilling wells again. Now, as the lock down has been lifted, our partners continue to watch the frequently changing “red zones” where there is a heightened number of cases to determine their travel plans. Additionally, our partners have applied for government aid for charities to help with the increased cost for food for the children. We are hopeful this aid will supplement our donor’s generous donations to ensure the children’s needs continue to be met. On June 16th a security guard at the main campus where roughly 1,500 rescued children live tested positive for coronavirus. Each child is in the process of being tested. So far, 381 children have tested positive, with 97 of them in the hospital being treated for severe cases. 512 pastors have tested positive, and 11 have passed away. Additionally, 52 of our volunteers have tested positive. Please continue to pray for health, healing, safety, and peace during this time. The children are not currently attending school and are staying socially distant. The tailoring graduates who are employed with the tailoring companies are currently healthy and using this time to share the gospel in their dormitories. Through it all, our pastors are remaining faithful in God’s goodness.
When a lock down was instated our partners and drill crews sheltered in place with their families. However, when lock down was extended through the month of May, our partners awaited government approval for one drill crew to continue to drill wells even under lock down, as water is an essential need. This approval was granted and one of our drill teams was able to begin drilling in June in Lofa County. They will continue to drill here throughout the month of June as travel between counties is still currently restricted. Additionally, our partner pastors are still bringing the gospel to those they encounter in the villages, while practicing social distancing. The Lord has also watched over each of our partners and their families and kept them safe and healthy in Liberia!
The coronavirus was slow to arrive in Sierra Leone, but the country has taken the disease seriously and instated a lock down that was lifted on May 7th, followed by the advice to continue to social distance and practice good sanitation. Since the lock down was lifted, our drill crews have been able to resume their monthly schedule of well drilling. They have also been following their Ministry of Sanitation’s guidelines closely while interacting with others in the villages. Additionally, they are using this opportunity to share this sanitation information with the villages we serve as they are finding about 20% of the villagers do not believe in the existence of the virus. Again, the Lord has kept each of our partners and their families safe and healthy though this uncertain time.
We are praising God through these trials for His provision over our ministry and partners. Thank you for the part you have played in making our work possible during this time!
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