Stories from the Mission Field

February 2022

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MALAWI

Population: 16 Millionen
Member union: BACOMA (Baptist Convention of Malawi)

Areas of work
Children at risk | 3
Church development | 4
Health care | 2

ZAMBIA

Population: 15 Millionen
Member union: BCZ (Baptist Convention of Zambia)

Areas of work
Church development | 1
Capacity Building | 1
Relief work | 2

Destruction after tropical storm Ana

Flooding in Southern Africa

On January 23, 2022, Tropical Storm Ana hit land in Mozambique and moved northwest across southern Malawi to Zambia. It left a trail of destruction: devastating floods hit Southern Africa. It is hard to predict what the long-term consequences will be or to what extent this will set back our partner countries in Malawi and Zambia. Both countries remain among the poorest in the world. Our local partners give an insight into the situation and ask for support.

Malawi: severe flooding, especially in the southern part of the country

“Malawi has never experienced a flood of this magnitude,” our Regional Representative for Southern Africa, Fletcher Kaiya, reports. He lives in Blantyre in southern Malawi. He and his family are doing well. Others have been hit harder: his neighbor’s house was destroyed in the middle of the night. The Misesa Baptist Church in Blantyre was also covered by the storm and parts of the building collapsed. The heavy rains caused the Shire River, among others, to flood its banks. Dams could not hold the water masses and broke. Malawi’s power supply was interrupted for days and is only starting up again with difficulty. It is in these next days that the full extent of the destruction will become clearer.

According to official estimates, almost 50,000 households have been affected. Most of them in the southernmost districts of Chikwawa and Nsanje. Fletcher Kaiya is noticeably shaken by how much suffering is already in the region: “It is shocking to see people desperately struggling to survive and how many have lost everything. One pastor told me about how his house was completely destroyed.” The Nsanje region in southern Malawi has been hit hard for the second time. In this lowland the water collects and also the floods from the broken dam ultimately arrive in this region, where the church founder Julius Damson has been active for years. EBM INTERNATIONAL, in cooperation with Pastor Julius, has already provided aid several times in recent years.

Balaka farm: only slight damage

“Climate change is a bitter reality here in Malawi,” says our missionary Karin Schwarz. On the farm, they have fortunately been spared to some extent from the current catastrophe. A workshop was destroyed and some houses were damaged by the heavy rain. The complete loss of electricity for several days due to a broken dam is badly affecting the whole country. “For a few days we have had at least six hours of electricity a day again. Because of the shortage, electricity is rationed to a few hours in all regions throughout the country. We can’t pump enough drinking water and now we have to ration water as well,” Karin says, still relatively relaxed. Her gratitude in all this becomes very clear. It has simply hit other people in the country much worse.

Zambia: Setbacks in agricultural projects

Our General Secretary Christoph Haus has been in contact with the head of the women’s work in Zambia for a few days. As recently as November, he was able to see impressive farm work in the Chokwe region, as the pictures in the margin show. “Now everything has been washed away. The farm is destroyed,” Lucy says.

We are now waiting for concrete requests for aid from both countries: “Of course we will help very quickly. Any support we can get for this will be greatly appreciated. And please pray for Malawi, Zambia and the entire region,” says Christoph Haus.

The best way to help is to donate to our disaster relief: Project 10600, which we can then use regardless of the country.

Our donation account at the Freikirchenbank (formerly SKB):
EBM INTERNATIONAL K.d.ö.R.
IBAN: DE 69 5009 2100 0000 0468 68
Intended purpose: Project 10600

Thank you for all your prayers and gifts.

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