Sun 25, Oct 2020
This Christmas and Advent, ABM is asking you to help people in Australia, Zambia and Kenya to be empowered to live life to the full.
For Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Christians this means growing leaders with the faith, vision and skills to build up their people, their churches and their communities.
Wontulp-Bi-Buya and Nungalinya colleges provide courses for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders which can enrich current and future leaders. Wontulp-Bi-Buya offers courses in Christian ministry, theology, suicide prevention, addictions management, community development, and more for students from all over Australia. The college does all this on a shoe-string budget, operating from a converted church hall in Cairns. As well as attending intensive teaching blocks in Cairns, the College also supports students with home-based studies once they are back in their local communities.
Nungalinya College receives applications from more than 500 remote Indigenous students each year. The college provides foundation courses that begin by teaching literacy, language and numeracy through the scriptures, since so many students arrive at the college without these basic skills. Thus, students can grow in their faith and biblical knowledge while improving their foundational skills. The colleges uses art, music and dance to explore how the Christian story can come alive within the students’ particular cultural contexts.
Pathway to Reconciliation by Rebecca Wilyuka. © Nungalinya College, 2020.
For Zambian communities, particularly those on the receiving end of gender-based violence (GBV), living life to the full is made possible by changing mindsets. It means spreading the word – to men and women alike – that violence is not the way to solve problems, and that girls have a right to complete their education, rather than being sent off into early marriages. It also means addressing the causes of poverty.
ABM’s Integrated Gender project in Zambia empowers people to end gender-based violence through door-to-door sensitisations and community drama performances. It returns girls who have been forced into early marriages back to their families and schools, and offers economic empowerment to survivors of violence, assisting them also to become advocates for their own rights. The project provides counselling and further support to the survivors. It engages church, school and traditional leaders to work with families to bring an end to harmful cultural practices such as child marriage.
The project has also established “Savings with Education” groups to enable people living in poverty, and particularly women and GBV survivors, to develop small business enterprises so that school fees can be paid and people can look forward to a better life.
Your donation can help train and grow networks of men’s groups, like the one Peter (pictured) belongs to. Groups have been created in the churches to spread the word - acting as role models, and encouraging other men to say a firm ‘NO’ to gender-based violence.
For Kenyan farmers struggling to harvest food crops, being able to live life to the full means less dependence on erratic rainfall, and having greater knowledge about how to work with the land to increase its natural productivity.
ABM’s Kenya Sustainable Livelihoods Project assists farmers to build better water storage and to use a range of water conservation methods, including extensive tree-planting. Farmers are trained to plant drought-resistant crops, and given seeds to begin with. Schools are supplied with rainwater tanks and handwashing facilities, and environment clubs are set up to inform the next generation of leaders about environmental sustainability. The project also reaches out to people with a disability, ensuring that disability is no barrier to inclusion. Thus, your donation can help people with a disability, like members of the Kiangini Farm Pond Self-Help Group (pictured), to continue to have bounteous vegetable harvests which provide them with enough income to live and thrive.
This Advent and Christmas, please consider making a donation to these tax-deductible projects, so that many more people may be able to live full and fruitful lives.
Online: You can make an online donation to the 2020 Advent and Christmas Appeal here or by clicking on the DONATE NOW button above.
Mail: you can enclose a cheque/money order (made out to the Anglican Board of Mission - Australia. Please include the campaign name 2020 Advent and Christmas Appeal with your donation) and send it to:
Anglican Board of Mission – Australia
Locked Bag Q4005
Queen Victoria Building NSW 1230
Telephone: Sydney 02 9264 1021, Local Call 1300 302 663
Gifts to ABM will be applied to the support of project(s) selected. In the unlikely event of the project being oversubscribed or not proceeding to completion, donations will be applied to a similar project to the one(s) selected.