Southern Province in Zambia is a dry and dusty part of Southern Africa. Average rainfall is below average for the nation, many struggle to raise crops. In recent years the province has had a State of Emergency declared because of drought.
It was to the remote village of Nyamuteze near Siavonga that Jon and Bernard travelled in July to make contacts for what we hoped would be future work.
Fast forward to the beginning of October. A 3 strong team from the UK came to help Jon and Bernard with Dignity’s first Life! Group training in Southern Province. The training itself had been organised by a local villager called Justin and some friends. He had managed to gather 25-30 people from 3 remote villages.
Dignity’s approach is based upon individual and collective Christian action. We begin with an educational approach that seeks to help Life! groups know God and create a fertile arena where villagers are free to assist one another. We teach about who Jesus is, group work, how to bring people together and what our responsibility is to our village. When we combine this with other approaches in caring for orphans, helping the disabled and he like we create a powerful combination for God driven, community enacted love and care.
We refer to them simply as Life! Groups.
Justin and his friends have now returned to heir villages. Over the next weeks and months we will keep in touch with Justin and his friends, supporting them where we can and inviting them to regular training meetings we hold. We try and take the long term view.
With our small effort, the large effort of the villagers and some help from God, we are all working for those villages to become streams in the desert, water in a dry and dusty land.