Church of the Nazarene - South Asia Field
The Ministry of Compassion
“Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, ‘Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,’ but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it?” (James 2:15-16).
As Nazarene Compassionate Ministries, it is our mission to serve the destitute and underprivileged in society, to help those whom nobody else helps, to give a voice to the voiceless, to empower people to improve their lives through holistic and long-term development, to lift people out of poverty and help make their lives worth living: to transform darkness into light.
To transform people’s lives in a long-term, sustainable manner, development projects need to be holistic and affect all areas of their lives. The following aspects – also as individual projects – are a brief introduction of Nazarene Compassionate Ministries’ (NCM’s) strategy for holistic development on the South Asia field. For more detailed and in depth information on Nazarene Compassionate Ministries, click here…
Investing in the Future
“Child Development Centres” are the major focus of NCM’s development work in South Asia. We are currently providing thousands of underprivileged children with primary education, a nutritious meal and regular health check-ups in more than 100 Nazarene schools and so called Child Development Centers (CDCs). Here we address the needs of a child holistically. Meaning its intellectual needs, its spiritual needs, its physical need, its social needs, and its emotional needs.
Many of our Child Development Centers also become a base or center point for an extended community based development in form of e.g. adult literacy classes and vocational training. Read more…
Becoming Healthy Citizens
Community-Based Health Care
Health care in most of South Asia is accessible to few of the poor. Through community-based health care, NCM fights the evils of malnutrition and infant and maternal mortality by making health services adequate and accessible, serving around 500,000 people in various projects throughout South Asia. CBHC focuses primarily on pre- and postnatal care, provides immunizations and health education including family planning and hygiene/sanitation issues, and raises people’s awareness about diseases such as HIV/AIDS.
CBHC also trains village health workers to offer basic health services locally. Child Development Centres include regular health checkups for the children, health & hygiene awareness lessons for children and mothers, and linkages to local health services.
Pastors Health and Emergency Support
Assisting our Pastors in Times of Exceptional Need
Pastors in the South Asian context serve the Lord in very difficult conditions. Local churches normally cannot afford to pay their pastors and therefore most of our churches are lead by pastors which are subsistence farmers working mostly in their small vegetable gardens and rice ponds The South Asia Pastors Fund is intended to help pastors to cover medical bills for them and their families. Unfortunately for most of our pastors there is not social security plans that help them to cover their medical expenses and medicines when the needs arises.
Responding in a compassionate manner when a pastor or their families get sick or even to support the expenses of funerals is very much needed in the South Asia field. The Pastors Health Support is a blessing to hundreds of pastors and their families.
Micro-Credit and Self-Help Groups
During the last few years, thousands of women (as well as some men) have joined Nazarene self-help groups (SHG) throughout South Asia. SHG members save a small amount each week and eventually receive a loan, with which they purchase various assets to start small businesses and become self-reliant, such as raising animals, fishing, planting and harvesting fruit, providing transportation with bikes, rickshaws, or motorcycles, opening small shops, or tailoring. NCM representatives advise local people and train them to use the funds effectively and wisely. A number of large-scale projects, including CDCs, habitually encourage the formation of self-help groups and offer awareness trainings and other services in the context of these groups.
Reaching Out to Victims
Every year the countries of South Asia are devastated by a series of natural and man-made disasters, such as floods, earthquakes, droughts, cold waves, terrorist attacks, and civil wars. In Disaster Response, NCM provides emergency relief (food, shelter, clothes, health care) to the victims and strengthens communities through rehabilitation work and mitigation. Through training programs addressing awareness and emergency preparedness, NCM attempts to soften the impact of the next disaster and allow locals to be better prepared.
In short-term rehabilitation, NCM often conducts “Food for Work” programs, especially after floods and cyclones in Bangladesh, where beneficiaries receive food in return for labour, e.g. road construction or tree plantation. Seed programs help victims to replant fields or home gardens, such as after the Pakistan earthquake and regular famine disasters in Bangladesh.
If shelters were destroyed, NCM may help with construction of houses and schools: in Pakistan, earthquake victims received 500 houses, a high school for 800 children, and a vocational training centre for young people and adults.
In many disasters, schools and child development centres are the major component of longterm rehabilitation efforts. Three schools are currently run for refugee children in Pakistan; earthquake, cyclone and flood rehabilitation included the establishment of several CDCs to develop the children long-term and give them a chance for the future.
Clean Water - An Essential to Life
Water and Sanitation
Two of the major causes of child death in developing countries are unsafe water and lack of effective hygiene practices. Health awareness training and the installation of water wells and slab latrines significantly improve sanitation and can save many lives. Several families use a water wells. Local NCM staff is responsible for installation and for teaching the families how to maintain the water wells, as well as offer health and hygiene training. Safe water is also important for successful animal husbandry and gardening.
The costs of drilling a well depend on a variety of factors. For example, in Sri Lanka and Nepal the water wells installation is more expensive due to the rocky terrain. In Bangladesh, water wells in coastal areas have to be considerably deeper due to salty groundwater. In many areas the higher layers of groundwater are poisoned with arsenic. An alternative to water wells is a biological water filter that filters pond water through three different layers of stones. The installation of water wells and slab latrines as well as health & hygiene training are also important aspects of child development centers. Please consider a small gift today to help bring clean water to someone in need.