Bring the joy of the Gospel to the people of Nigeria through home-based care training!
GOAL: Enhance the current Home Based Care program in Nigeria to include health education and care
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Goal: $6,000 USD
Nigeria has one of the most rapid growing populations in all Africa, now exceeding 150 million people. Estimates show that 1 in 6 of all Africans is Nigerian. Additionally, Nigeria now has the largest economy in Africa. But the supply of these resources is uneven, and honest authority remains a significant challenge. Even though Nigeria is one of the larger oil producing nation in Africa, there are fuel shortages found throughout the country.
These challenges extend to health care as well. Many cities are unable to pay medical bills. Many All Saints rural church members lack the funds or transport to access care. As a result, many diseases go untreated and deaths from preventable illnesses remain high. These national level challenges are of course beyond the ability of Kingdom Workers (KW) to address. All Saints Lutheran (synod) is blessed to have a group of trained medical workers among their membership. All Saints Rural Health Services (ASRHS) is a group of Public Health Officers, Community Health Workers, and nurses who work to serve the churches in their synod. Organized in 2009, ASRHS is locally led. They have built a modest clinic with limited support from the Antioch Foundation. ASRHS uses synod conferences, women’s rallies, and youth gatherings to involve members in health education activities. The work of ASRHS also receives modest annual grants from WELS Christian Aid and Relief.
• Enhance the current Home Based Care program to include health education and care
The goal of this project is to train All Saints local congregations’ women’s groups to grow their current visiting ministry. This includes home-based care services. These women’s groups are currently visiting sick community members. When they visit they lead devotions and prayer with the individuals. They wish to expand their services to include basic health education and care. Local All Saints Rural Health Service (ASRHS) can help provide training. This training will show that women's group cares by providing needed precautionary health education in addition to the gospel messages they are already sharing through their devotions. Kingdom Workers (KW) cannot address all the structural and health care problems within Nigeria. Yet KW can help extend knowledge about disease prevention with local effort. This can lead to better health outcomes for our brothers and sisters in Christ in Nigeria.
Peter O. and Sunday U., the leaders of ASRHS, plan to conduct this project (training) in August 2016. Michael Toppe will remotely assist with oversight by Rev. Douglas Weiser (WELS Missionary). Read more about these KW volunteers in their bios below.
The ASRHS members will provide the training material. Financial support is needed for printing training manuals, meals, and accommodation for workshop participants.
Peter O. is a member of All Saints Lutheran Church, Woleche congregation. He works as a Community Health Officer at a Primary Health Center, providing primary care and preventative services to the Nigerian public. He also serves as one of two coordinators for All Saints Rural Health Services, providing oversight of the Woleche Clinic (southwest of Ogoja), as well as directing the health education ministry of the Synod. He has steadfastly, and without pay, worked to further the reach and efficacy of ASRHS since its inception in 2009
Sunday U. is a member of All Saints Lutheran Church, Woleche congregation. He also works as a Community Health Officer, in a similar capacity as Peter. As the other coordinator of All Saints Rural Health Services, he has also worked to further the health and evangelism goals of as a volunteer since 2009. His special interest is to locate All Saints members who are already engaged in health care in the heavily populated Boki area, southeast of Ogoja. When this group is found and formed, the plan is for ASRHS to build and operate a clinic in the Boki area.
Professor Michael Toppe is a physician assistant by training, and currently faculty at Concordia University Wisconsin, in the PA Graduate Program. He is very interested in medical care and mission work in Africa. His experience includes working as a Peace Corps volunteer in Niger, West Africa, training in tropical medicine in Lusaka, Zambia, and practicing as a Medical Officer in the Gambia, West Africa, as well as in Pretoria, South Africa. In July 2015, he was fortunate enough to visit Nigeria as part of a site assessment for KW. This project was developed in response to that visit.
Pastor Douglas Weiser serves as the WELS visiting missionary to Nigeria. He has been visiting there since 1997 and been the point man for WELS since 2002. Weiser has met with the medical volunteers of All Saints since the time they organized and continues to tend to the relation between WELS and its Nigerian partners.
WELS has been doing mission work in Nigeria since 1936. There are 2 synods we are in fellowship with: Christ the King Lutheran Church and All Saints Lutheran Church. This training will focus on the All Saints synod, which is composed of 26 congregations in northern Cross River State Nigeria.
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