Thursday, 7 November 2019
Food scarcity is an overwhelming issue in Niger as it has one of the world’s most difficult climates for farming. Ranked last on the Human Development Index (HDI), Niger's population are the least nourished, suffer from poor national security and have the least access to education and healthcare. This, along with poor hygiene and sanitation, leads to frequent sickness.
However, SIM’s Sowing Seeds of Change in the Sahel (SSCS), was started to empower rural farming families in Niger by teaching sustainable agroforestry systems and basic health care. The methods taught by SSCS are seeing farmers improve food security and nutrition, as well as empowering them to build a better future for their families through income generation.
Motivated by the love of Jesus, SSCS also incorporates Bible studies into their agricultural training and health care. Jeannette, SSCS Agricultural Project Manager, said, “Whether it be health care or agriculture, in all of our Bible teachings, we connect what we're reading with the realities of everyday life. We look at how we treat people, how we deal with relationships problems, how we see work, why we want to do the work we do and the way we do it.”
Below, you can read about how SSCS workers were able to care for a woman’s medical needs, with the support of many prayerful people around the world.
Mary* became paralysed after she caught a fever two years ago. The muscles in her legs became so contracted that her knees were permanently bent and jammed tightly together. Sadly, her only way of moving was to drag herself along the ground.
A visiting physiotherapist struggled to move Mary’s spasming legs but suggested a visit to the SIM clinic. With muscle relaxants and intensive physiotherapy, perhaps Mary could be helped.
Workers in the project prayed for Mary and also asked people around the world to pray for her situation. Many months passed and Mary didn’t visit the clinic. While the reasons are unknown, many locals don’t visit medical centres due to the cost.
One day, a SSCS worker noticed that Mary’s legs weren’t jammed together as tightly and they had a bit of movement. Knowing that Mary wouldn’t visit the clinic, the worker sought advice from a physiotherapist. The worker returned to Mary’s village with a list of exercises for her to do. Mary finally had some hope.
Since then, Mary has faithfully followed an exercise regime and praise God that she is finally beginning to walk. Mary has been listening to Bible stories and knows that people around the world have been praying for her. Please join us in praying that one day she will give God the glory for her healing and realise that her only hope is in Him.
*Name changed to protect identity
Photo: Joni Byker
You can make a difference in the lives of Nigerien farming families through SIM’s Community Transformation Fund (09320)! Give online here
Please pray for God’s continued guidance and wisdom for SSCS workers as they teach farming families about sustainable agricultural methods and healthcare.
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