After spending time helping at the Tumaini Counselling Centre in Nairobi as part of a short term trip in summer 2011, Mark & Barbara believed that God was calling them back to use the skills he has given them on the mission field for his glory.
‘Tumaini’ is the Swahili word for ‘hope’. The missionary life can be very rewarding, but can also be tough. There is a real spiritual battle, and, of course, missionaries are not exempt from the physical and mental health problems that can afflict anyone. The staff, who are themselves missionaries, work to ‘provide preventative and restorative mental health services and pastoral care in order to enhance missionary resilience and fruitfulness.’ Mark had been a counsellor for over 30 years and took early retirement from his position as Head of Counselling at Cambridge University to go to Nairobi.
Barbara taught adult literacy in Essex for over 15 years, and while Mark worked at Tumaini she worked at Africa International University, teaching English and discipling theology students and pastors’ wives.
In 2016 the Phippens moved back to the UK, and until the end of 2019 Mark remotely supported the work of Tumaini as their Clinical Team Leader.
Partner with the Phippens
Until the end of 2019, Mark worked remotely as a counsellor and Clinical Team Leader for Tumaini Counselling Centre, in Nairobi, Kenya. Barbara supported him.
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Latest prayer points
- 13 December 2019
The Phippens will be retiring from serving with AIM at the end of the year. Mark writes: “I am recently back from three weeks in Nairobi and Kampala. The trip was primarily to hand over the Clinical Team Leader role to Gunilla, a colleague at Tumanin in Nairobi, but it was in many ways a ‘farewell trip’. It was a time of great blessing and joy for me, mixes with the sadness of goodbyes… Officially speaking, Barbara and I retire at the end of December, but I continue to be involves in mentoring Gunilla as she takes up the Clinical Team Leader role, and also in recruitment matters for Tumaini. So, work is a lot quieter, but I am glad to still be involved… Praise God for his faithfulness in all things, including my recent trip to Kenya and Uganda. Please pray for Gunilla as she steps into her new role as Clinical Team Leader for the Tumaini Counselling Centres, and for the ongoing work of Tumaini as the team seek to serve and support many missionaries working throughout Africa.”
- 11 October 2019
“The time is approaching when we will retire as missionaries with Africa Inland Mission. It is a time of mixed feelings for us, as we have been associated with AIM since February 2010. However, as this season draws to a close, we wonder what the Lord has in store for us; after all, we don’t retire as Christians! After six years, Mark passes on the Clinical Team Leader role for the Tumaini Nairobi and Kampala Counselling Centres at the start of November, but will continue with the handover until the end of the year. In fact, Mark has also been handling recruitment enquiries for Tumaini and will continue with this into 2020, until a colleague who has recently returned to the US can take that on. So, we are in a period of gradually bowing out… Please pray for Mark’s upcoming trip to Nairobi and Kampala and the handover of the leadership role to Gunilla, and for the Lord’s leading in our lives in retirement.”
- 5 July 2019
Mark shares, “We have several times wondered whether it would be possible to keep the centre going in Kampala, as the staffing there is so small. But each time, so far, the Lord has provided. Yet here we are again wondering about the future from 2020. Judith [who leads the centre in Kampala] returns to Kampala in September after her home assignment in Germany, but we are all clear that we need a team there for it to be sustainable; for a single therapist working alone, it really cannot be done. So, again, we find ourselves thinking and praying…” If you know someone with counselling, psychiatry or psychology skills why not point them to our current vacancies?