Andrea Hellemann

Sent from Evangelische Freie Gemeinde Pivitsheide e.V, Germany

Andrea works with Safina Street Network, serving the street children in Dodoma, Tanzania, providing medical, legal, social and spiritual help.

Safina Street Network serves the street children in Dodoma, providing meals, spiritual teaching and assistance with education, medical, legal, and social matters. The Network focuses on: a nursery school for children from nearby slums and foster homes, night-time outreach to children on the street and reintegrating children with their families.

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“Once a year, we normally try to organise a camp for our kids so that they can enjoy a little vacation. It’s also a good opportunity to reach them with the Gospel. But this year, it didn’t look like it would work out financially. However, Baton (a musician and former resident), who works in Morogoro as a Christian animator, arranged for us to use an inexpensive, large campground with everything included. He even ordered nine buses (!) so that all of the Safina branches would be able to send children—a total of 550 kids… Despite the euphoria, I was a little apprehensive, thinking that 500 kids all on one campsite might not be the best idea and that they might get into trouble. But thanks to the great activities, the kids didn’t have time for that. And the best thing about it: of our 110 Dodoma kids, 56 came to faith in Christ at the camp. Four others were baptized just prior to it.” Praise God that these children came to faith, and please pray for them as they start their new lives of walking with God.

“We used to have a “kindergarten” next to our office rooms until the social services department said that we were not permitted to combine children from the kindergarten with kids from the street. As a result, we were unable to register the kindergarten. The reason given was that a kindergarten is not allowed to be adjoined to office rooms. We then moved the kindergarten to Ntyuka, where our family houses are located and have begun building kindergarten rooms, which we also want to use for church services. The walls are up, but we don’t have a roof yet due to a lack of funding…Please pray for funding for the kindergarten roof.”

“We have begun with our work at the Shelter, though we have not yet had the dedication. Social Services and the Police have already sent us our first children. Indeed, two have already passed through the Shelter and are now integrated into one of our foster families. The idea behind the Shelter is to help these street kids with initial adjustments so that they can get along with others well enough to be accepted into a family. Peter and Ima, two former street kids, now grown up, serve as “house parents” – and are doing a good job. Presently, they’re looking after three teenagers and four children, three of which are of kindergarten age. Five-year old Ibrahim is one of our kids. He’d come for tea several times to our Drop-In Center while he was living with his mother on the police station property. Once we asked the police if she was still living there, and they told us she was crazy and that they had chased her away. She was now living with her son under a tree. This woman is quite apathetic and unable to care for her son. The police asked us to take him, which we did. His two big fears are, not to get enough to eat, and that he will be forgotten. Now he’s experiencing family.” Give praise to Him for the work of Safina and for the support and hope that they bring. Pray for others like Ibrahim who need to experience the warm embrace of our loving heavenly father.”

“When we get children from the street who tell us that they want to go to school, we usually try to bring them back to their homes. For those who return home we continue to help with school materials and fees. Once again we were able to return a child to his family. It was a real miracle to get the boy’s mother on the phone. She actually lives on the other side of Tanzania. It took us almost 16 hours to get there. The following day we were able to get a place in school and also connected the family to a local church. We hope that the boy will settle down, find good friends and manage to stay in school.” Praise God that the boy was able to be returned home and pray that he will settle well into family life and school.  

“School break is always a little bit more stressful than the “normal” routine. The reason for that is the kids feel that they have nothing to do, or they have stress at home so they start hanging out on the street again. That is why we have extra programmes for them during the holidays. This summer we had a camp for the children in primary school. About 50 children came to the camp. The last day was a special day to close the camp as we again received presents from Operation Christmas Child… Our children in 7th grade Primary and Form 4 Secondary are about to take the state exams. It is possible that they will have their exams early this year, probably in September, since we are going to have our presidential election this year. We hope that all our children will pass the exams.”

Tanzania

Tanzania is one of the world’s poorest nations; agricultural subsistence dominates its economy. Health and education sectors require massive investments.There is freedom of religion; all major faiths have the ability to share and propagate their faith. Christianity makes up 54% of the population with Islam totalling 31%. LEARN MORE

Children & Youth

In sharing the gospel with children & young people our hope is to develop disciple making disciples – to demonstrate God’s immeasurable love for children and to offer them the reassurance and peace that a relationship with him can bring. LEARN MORE
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