Jesus told his followers in John 6:35, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.” He was referring to spiritual food. However, his statement followed the miracle of his feeding 5000 people with 5 barley loaves and 2 small fish. Jesus used food to prove he was the Son of God.
Over 2.7 million people in South Sudan have been forced to flee their homes, due to conflict, to other countries or to refugee camps. For a nation who’s people traditionally survive on subsistence farming (growing only enough to feed one’s family), this is devastating. At least 40% of the population is in need of life-saving assistance, with many on the brink of starvation.
By God’s blessing, through the faithful partners of Living Water Community Transformation, the community of Akot is thriving on physical and spiritual food. Akot Christian Ministries (the name by which LWCT is known in South Sudan) is addressing the food shortage in Akot (and the surrounding communities) in each of its 4 areas of ministry.
“Bread of Life Farm” has 20 feddans (acres) planted with grains, beans, ground nuts, vegetables and fruit trees. It is managed by an outstanding team, Moses, Kuot and Isaac. Kuot, our first sponsored university graduate, recently returned to Akot to lead this ministry. A solar powered irrigation system will water a significant area of the farm.
“Women of Hope”, our women’s ministry operates a vegetable garden. Under the direction of Mary Agum, the women have expanded their garden this year. Home drip irrigation systems have been introduced and women trained to use them.
“Living Water Primary” and “Abundant Life Primary” schools, under the direction of Rev. Gabriel Amat, are studying agriculture in the classroom. They are learning better farming skills and practicing those in their large school garden. Protein rich ground nuts are being harvested this month. Hungry children are served ground nuts from their own school garden for breakfast each morning.
ACM churches, under the direction of Pastor Daniel Mabak, have planted gardens for the first time this year. Church members work together to ensure that enough food is produced for their own communities.
Much of the population of Akot has embraced the good news of the gospel. Their children are being educated in a loving Christian environment. The women and men are learning to be strong disciples of Christ. Seventy residents have employment. And many women are learning vocational skills, which allow them to start small businesses.
None of this would be possible without your prayers and financial support. Now, more than ever we need your support. Everything we do is becoming more difficult and more expensive each day because of the current political situation.
We thank you and God for His provision. However, this is a very small area of South Sudan. The nation as a whole is suffering and there are threats of renewed fighting between military groups. For the people who have been able to cultivate this year, ground nuts are being harvested now. This will provide some relief from hunger, but this food will not last until the harvest of sorghum in late November and early December. There is no food being imported due to military conflict, impassable roads, lack of fuel, and many desperate people looting delivery trucks along the road. The situation is dire. Please pray for South Sudan.