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April 2010 - ARM Trip to Southern Sudan
Posted By: arm (8/4/2011 9:03:27 AM)
In April 2010, African Relief Ministries traveled to Nasir and Ulang Southern Sudan. This was during the first Presidential election in 20 years. While there, A.R.M started two Widows' Business Micro-finance groups and conducted pastoral training in both regions.

The widows' training consisted of business, esteem, group teamwork and trauma awareness and practical coping skills. The Pastoral training was in the areas of reconciliation, trust, tribalism, community, inter- personal relationships and unity.

The team participants were Amy Richards, a trauma nurse; Pastor Michael Gatkek a Nazarene Pastor from Portland, Maine, founder of A.R.M and native of Southern Sudan; and Pastor Hazel Seavey, President of African Relief Ministries.

At the trainings in Nasir and Ulang, more than 100 widows attended the training and fellowship meals together. Many widows shared their trauma experiences for the first time and found new hope! The groups were established with 30 widows, a group President selected from the widows and a secretary/treasurer. After the training, each widow was given a completion certificate and awarded their money to start their own business. Hope was given and joy was abounding!

Since that time, both groups in both Nasir and Ulang have paid back their principal allotments 100% and are now working on their second and third installments to the widows' group. (See tab for Widows' Business)

The Pastoral training was equally successful! There was a brotherhood only found in Christ Jesus and His healing. Working together, we shared and learned how to overcome obstacles that will hurt and destroy future growth both individually and collectively.

This October, African Relief Ministries will travel again to the regions of Nasir and Ulang, as well as Gambela, Ethiopia. While there, more widows' business groups will be established and pastoral/ leadership training will be conducted. We will also be researching material costs, possible locations and resources for the future goal of building a reconciliation center in Southern Sudan.

The A.R.M team members for 2011 are Pastor Michael Gatkek, Pastor Hazel Seavey, Sandra Kaiser- Grief/Loss social worker, Rebecca Lawrence- Seed/VBS project coordinator and Mark Carter- Youth & project worker.

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