Sandra Meyer works with SAFINA Street Network in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Their main aim is to see young lives redeemed, restored and transformed through the love of Christ. Sandra writes…
A chance to talk
While still on the streets, kids come into our Drop-In-Centre where they can get food, medical care, a chance to talk about their lives and listen to our teaching about the Word of God. My heart really beats to help them through counseling sessions. These one to one times are good opportunities to teach them personally about the presence and love of God. If they decide to stop living on the streets they come into our shelter for about three months. Here they learn to get used to rules and a daily life again. We also try ascertain their education level and give them some schooling. Our main aim, however, is to get in contact with their families so that they can be reconciled with them. If that is not possible then they join one of our foster families where they live until they have finished school or training.
One day I met Gabriel, he looked so sad. He told me that he got into trouble with a neighbour at home, because the neighbour beat his dog very badly. Gabriel got very angry, beat up the boy and then ran away. But now in the shelter he told me how much he missed his parents. We have a branch in the area where he used to live, so we sent workers to try and find his family. His parents were already searching for him, and I had the privilege to drive his father and brother to the shelter. I won’t forget how Gabriel looked when his family suddenly got out of the car and he ran into their arms. It was an awesome and touching moment for me. Now he is home again.
Training for Pastors
Tony Swanson shares the vision of the Institute of Bible and Ministry to ‘Enable, Mobilise and Inspire’ pastors in Tanzania…
‘EMI’ is not only a record label but an acronym for the mission of the Institute of Bible and Ministry, to ‘Enable, Mobilise and Inspire’ pastors in a closer relationship with the Lord and greater effectiveness in ministry. Our ministry is in partnership with Africa Inland Church Tanzania and provides an in-service training programme for around 140 pastors and wives, most of whom, work amongst Muslim peoples along the coast of Tanzania.
One candidate shared, ‘Attending this training seminar has had many benefits for me… it has enabled me to reach Muslims in their areas without offending them.’ The mobilising part includes local initiatives for resourcing the programmes. As well as training we offer pastors opportunities to hear excellent speakers. One pastor shared ‘I have been blessed, I feel encouraged and I feel strengthened. My time here has aroused a new vigour to work andinspired me to develop fresh strategies to reach needy ones.’