[“SHARE” APR – JUN 2019 ] FOCUS ~ Community Development & Advocacy
Written by: Lai Ka Chun
In mid-2018, a junior football team and their assistant coach were rescued after 18 days in Tham Luang Nang Non cave in Chiang Rai Province, Thailand. Their 25-year-old coach’s care in the cave was indispensable. This incident made the coach a hero in Thais’ hearts. However, this coach was originally stateless, as well as the other 3 boys, who had no Thai citizenships.
[Annual Report 2011-2012] Mobilising Churches and Christians
Review of 2011 to 2012
In the past year CEDAR reached out to 73 churches/groups. Some want to know more about serving the poor and have put the theory into practice. We also have close cooperation with two churches, organized seminars, visited marginalized communities such as low-income families, new migrant single mothers and needy students, explored midnight markets to try and understand what goods or services low-income communities buy. The social concern group of one of the cooperating churches has plans to mobilise other churches and the general public, to help them learn about the needs of low-income families in Hong Kong through publications and exhibitions in the coming six months.
73 times of sharing at churches/groups
Learning and Prospect
In the past ministry year, we are happy to know that many churches share the concept of integral mission, however so far our cooperation with churches are mainly one-off therefore we believe more coordination and preparation are needed on how to explore and develop church ministry on social concern. CEDAR has plan to develop more simple and ready-made information and materials for churches to teach and encourage congregations to respond to the need of the society and the world.
‘In Christ, every churches, organisations and Christian groups are part of the body of Christ, bearing the same Kingdom mission. We are looking forward to have closer partnership with local churches and Christian groups by in-depth communication, cooperation and mutual learning, in order to work out the integral mission of Church more appropriately and effectively.
Dhading is one of the most impoverished districts in the central region of Nepal. Most of the population is ethnic groups. Nearly 40% of its population lives in very poor and marginalized situation. They are mainly subsistence farmers, surviving by scanty means. There is poor sanitation with over 60% of the population in the district has no access to clean drinking water and very few villagers have toilets. Due to lack of basic health and hygiene knowledge and availability of medical services, child mortality rate is more than 10%. Villagers do not receive suitable medication when they suffered from commonly found diseases as diarrhea, gastritis and typhoid.
Our partner Shanti Nepal provides training and technical support to local clinics through implementing a Community Health and Empowerment programme. In order to improve medical services, trainings are given to local government health workers. Meanwhile, indigenous organisations and local churches are taught how to respond to local needs on primary health care and basic livelihood. Partner also supports small scale drinking water initiatives, antenatal and postnatal checking to pregnant women and teaches villagers about children nutrition and health. For the economic improvement, trainings are given to community development groups on techniques of planting, chicken and goat / sheep raising and handicraft. For improving the health of villagers, the programme actively promotes the importance of sanitation as well as building of toilets. Many villages experienced community transformation because of this programme.
The Kumal community is a good example. Several years ago, only 6 households out of 154 had pit latrines in the village. The level of hygiene and sanitation of the community was low. People practiced open-field defecation therefore wastes laid around and gave off offensive smell in the air. In 2009 partner setup an Environmental Sanitation Coordination Committee to address the environmental health issues of the community. The committee raised villagers’ sanitation awareness through cultural events and audio-visual media. Before long, villagers started to commit in building toilets. Shanti Nepal supported the community by providing materials and technical skill training on toilet building. Villagers then started to dig pits, make walls and collect materials for the toilets. Within 3 months, all 154 households in the community built toilets successfully. Community members have transformed from the poor habit of open-field defecation. Local rules are also developed to keep the village clean. Now the Kumal community can enjoy an improvement in sanitation and a clean environment.
With your support:
HK$250 will subsidise a household to build a toilet;
HK$500 will provide two basic health sessions for mothers’ groups;
HK$1,000 will provide four training sessions on livelihood skills to community groups