[ ‘SHARE’ May-Jun 2014 – Loving Care Passing On from One Generation to Another ] JOIN HANDS JOIN HEARTS
Interviewed and arranged by>Jojo Poon
Last November CEDAR staff Chik Tsan-ming (‘Chik’) visited our partners Family AIDS Caring Trust (FACT) and Trinity Project Trust (‘Trinity’) in Zimbabwe and met some of the children and families under their assistance program. To Chik, Zimbabwe is rich in natural resources, has good infrastructure and a high adult literacy of over 90%, but at the same time many vacant shopping malls and factories, an 80% unemployment rate and the typical day of having no lunch for most people.
Zimbabwe became independent and the white minority rule ended in 1980. The country then elected its first democratic president Robert Mugabe and he has been ruling Zimbabwe since then. After coming to power, Mugabe evicted the white landowners and confiscated all their lands, ruining Zimbabwe’s agricultural production and development, causing a sharp fall in the nation’s economy. Facing a weak economy and long-term debt, the Zimbabwean government printed banknotes in an attempt to cover the deficit but that only resulted in inflation in terms of millions and currency devaluation. High inflation, high unemployment rate and a high AIDS population all contributed to Zimbabwe’s poverty today.
‘I believe what the Zimbabwean children need most is an “identity”, legally and psychologically.’ Chik visited a local primary school in which two-thirds of the pupils do not have any identity document, without which they can neither continue their education nor inherit their parents’ possessions.
A staff member of FACT told Chik that her wish is these orphans could feel loved like other normal children. This touched Chik deeply. Yes, love is not restricted by blood relations, and although these orphans no longer have their parents’ love and protection, they are still loved by the church and the local community. We pray that the AIDS-orphans in Zimbabwe will truly know and experience that they are also being loved.
Chik was saddened with what he saw in Zimbabwe but he also witnessed how God trained the local churches to respond to the community needs according to the bible’s teaching, that the churches take part in nurturing and training the Zimbabwean children for the nation’s future development. Chik believes this is the ultimate objective of children ministry in poverty relief.
‘Join Hands Join Hearts’ Children Ministry Scheme