A Father to the Fatherless
“Before I received help from ACM (Akot Christian Ministries) I did not know where I could find food for my myself and my brother and sisters. I used to think a lot about school, but our future seemed hopeless because we did not have parents,” wrote Petero in a thank you note via Facebook. Petero is an orphan who graduated from Abundant Life Primary School, one of Living Water Community Transformation’s schools in Akot, South Sudan. He is one of 10 orphans LWCT is currently sponsoring in Secondary School in Rumbek. He, like our other orphans, makes very good grades. Petero ranks second out of 179 students in his class at Savannah Secondary School. In 2016 one of our graduates, who is also an orphan, ranked number one in Western Lakes State.
LWCT has always welcomed children who do not have the ability to pay school fees. The families are requested to pay the equivalent of $3 USD per school year. If the parents can not afford the fees, the children can bring garden produce, grass for making roofs or sticks from the forest for firewood. Orphans are not required to pay anything.
Living Water Primary and Abundant Life Primary have a significant number of orphans enrolled. In South Sudan orphans typically live with a relative who will take them. In most cases, when there is not enough food or other resources, the orphans are the last to have their needs met. For many the meal they receive at school is the only food they receive in a day. On holidays, ACM sends grain home with the orphans.
We have noted that the orphans tend to thrive in the loving Christian environment that our schools provide. Like the other schools in South Sudan, the teachers at ACM schools are mostly men (15 of the 17 teachers are male). Thankfully these Christian men are serving as good father figures to these young disciples who have no earthly father. A father’s presence influences the type of relationship a child has with his/her Heavenly Father. I praise God for our godly teachers, guards, cooks, cleaners, chaplains and counsellors.
“A father to the fatherless, defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling.” Psalm 68:5
According to UNICEF, the children of South Sudan are the greatest victims of the ongoing civil war and famine. More than a million children have been displaced within South Sudan, and another one million have sought safety in refugee camps in neighboring countries. Many of these children reach the camps unaccompanied by any adult. Three-fourths of the children in South Sudan are not in school. The number of orphans in South Sudan is increasing daily.
Please pray for Living Water Community Transformation to be able to continue to minister to the orphans in South Sudan.
Happy Father’s Day
Nhialic abi thiei (Dinka for God bless you),
Ann Rao, President