Burma Background

ActionOverseas has partnered with Stand By Me, a global movement of people who rescue kids in crisis, to come to the aid of children in Burma. In 2009 land was purchased, staff trained and four homes built to cater for 48 young children who have no parents to care for them. The teachers come from a nearby Bible college where ActionOverseas has a good relationship with the principal. It is our hope that all children will come to accept Jesus as their saviour during their stay at the home.

Visits are made twice a year by teams from the UK to promote and assist with the work in these homes. Such encouraging progress is evident to see as each child has his or her own bunk bed with a comfortable mattress, which they are very proud to show you, this is something many Burmese children do not have. They attend a local school, have clean clothes and nourishing food, and are surrounded by loving, caring Christian people who have chosen to dedicate their lives to care for them.

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Malawi - Special Report

Special Report by Sandra Skene (Malawi)

There has been a real need for a feeding programme to be established in Malawi, where malnutrition and it's subsequent problems create many unnecessary infant deaths and childhood ailments. Sandra Skene, the ActionOverseas resident missionary in the country, felt compelled to act, here is her story.

Feeding Project Feeding Project Feeding Project

The feeding programme which we run in Malawi for malnourished children under the age of 5 years has been in place for almost 11 years. My colleague, Anne Davies and I would travel throughout Malawi with our husbands on church visitation and we would come home and share about the children looking hungry and with so many minor skin conditions/childhood ailments. After doing this for a few weeks we looked at each other and said "Well, either we do something about it or we shut up!" We decided to do something!!! We started by looking at other projects to see if we thought we could manage  and then set about finding funding. We identified a village in the Lower Shire and God quickly supplied the necessary funding - it was all systems go!

In Malawi the problems are so big it is easy to become overwhelmed and do nothing or you can do the little bit you can do and make a difference to some. We decided we could cope with 20 - 25 children on the project - over the years the project has grown and at present we have 45 children on our books! My colleague left after a couple of years and I was unsure if I would be able to continue this project alone - but how can you stop feeding children? So I prayed that if God would continue to send the funding, I would continue to run the programme! And up to this present day, God has been faithful and the funding has come. I thank God for the people who have been obedient to His prompting to support this programme.

Feeding Project Feeding Project Feeding Project

When we go to the project our truck is loaded up with everything we need the pots and pans, the baby cereal - even the water for cooking and clearing up! When we arrive we weigh the children while the mothers cook the porridge and while it is cooking we take the chance to present the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Once everyone has eaten and the mums have cleared up they are given a supply of cereal to give the child one meal a day until we return in two weeks. We used to go on a weekly basis but as some of the mums were walking up to 2 hours to reach us we agreed to give double supplies and come once a fortnight.

It is a joy to see the children grow and develop and although they should be discharged at the age of 5 years, many are kept on longer if that is
required!'

Burma Profile

Burma was once a prosperous country with thriving agriculture, rich deposits of jade and extensive timber industries; it was known as the Golden Land. However a cruel and military junta, persecution and corruption have resulted in poverty, starvation, hunger, child prostitution and the largest percentage of child soldiers in any country in the world. Until recently isolation and persecution of Christians and the closure of churches was an everyday occurrence. One million people live in the forests of Burma still afraid of the government forces.

There is a glimmer of hope for the country as a new government has come into power and progress is slowly being made. Some aid is now reaching the country from the UK, with an aim to tackle malaria, reduce child mortality and enable children to build their future. This is still only a tiny proportion of that truly required by the nation.

The country is still predominantly Buddhist with some 89% of the population following this religion. Christianity meanwhile accounts for only 4%, with people facing attack and persecution by the military. In early 2012 talks between the government and Christian leaders were held, there is hope these will lead to an end of the sixty year conflict within the nation but there is a long way to go as the conflict, the warfare, the death of civilians, and attacks specifically targeting Christians are long running issues.

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