The Good News and the Bad News
Is anyone else as tired as I am of the media’s incessant focus on the US political situation? It is as if nothing else important is happening in the entire world. Or is it that we just that do not care about anything or anyone other than ourselves? Sadly, there is news that we need to know about, and most of it is not good news. In South Sudan, the world”s newest nation, more than half of the population is suffering from lack of food. A civil war, that has lasted three and a half years, has left 5.5 million souls in various stages of starvation. That statistic is increasing daily.
Living Water Community Transformation has worked very hard to eliminate the expected annual season of hunger in Akot, South Sudan. The food which families traditionally harvest and store, is typically depleted by May. Even if the quantity of stored food was enough to last until the harvest in September, it is always destroyed by pests before it could be consumed. The months of May through September are known as the time of hunger by the South Sudanese people.
LWCT, working alongside our Akot Christian Ministry staff, has made great progress toward eliminating this annual food shortage. Large church gardens, school gardens, and women”s ministry gardens are being cultivated. Several teams of oxen and ploughs have been purchased. Bucket drip irrigation systems have been demonstrated and distributed. And a solar powered irrigation system has been installed at Bread of Life Farm. A goat rearing business has been running successfully, and a chicken farm is in the beginning stages. Several new fruits and vegetables have been introduced to the community, as well as improved varieties of their familiar staple foods. Also a big emphasis has been placed on agricultural education. Several farm staff were sent for vocational training in agriculture. A 4 year university agriculture scholarship has been provided for 2 young men from Akot. And an agriculture curriculum was integrated into our 2 primary schools” program.
The good news is that we should have a plentiful harvest in September, with excess to sell in neighboring markets . The bad news is that there is a severe lack of food for our people right now. The effects of the civil war have finally reached Akot. Millions of people in other parts of South Sudan have had to flee their homes due to military and tribal fighting. As a result very few people were able to grow their own food, increasing the demand for purchased food in the markets. Daily robberies along the main route from Uganda have almost halted the importation of food. This week the rains started, which further complicates the problem. The neglected dirt roads will soon be impassable.
LWCT has a very small window of time to purchase a very large quantity of food. It will be stored and used as needed over the next 5 months. This food will need to be transported from Uganda quickly in order to arrive before the roads become totally impassable. Transportation costs will double the cost of this food.
Your prayers and your financial help are desperately needed at this time. Any amount you are able to give will be very appreciated. It will save lives.
Donations are possible by credit card or by check. See below for website and address.
Please note that Living Water Community Transformation has a new home. After a few months of using a temporary address we are now in our new permanent home.
230 Sydney Dr
Goodlettsville, TN 37072