Sunday, December 30, 2007

Village Wells Update


What a wonderful experience to watch how God connects resources with needs around the world. In early December, Robby at Hopegivers International called to tell me that his donor was ready to sponsor a village well in Malawi, and that he'd like to join me on the mission trip in March to see the project. Then, last night, Mike Rose, my partner in raising funds for village wells,called me tonight to tell me about another one of his business buddies who wanted to sponsor two village wells before the end of the year. We seized the moment to celebrate the great success that a total of seven Village Wells were sponsored and funded through CitiHope in 2007. Here's a summary of the seven:

1. Zowe (3 hours outside of Mzuzu) is a remote preaching point of the Circuit of Mzuzu, United Methodist Church, requested by Pastor Copeland Nkhata. “Zowe is a small village with a primary school and a prayer hut church in larger village catchment area of about 5,000 people. It is a very dry place and people suffer a lot, as they have to drink dirty water from the same ponds where animals drink, especially in dry season and this makes people more vulnerable to diseases. And a bore hole would be a great solution to the problem. A bore hole would serve the church, the primary school and the entire community.” Number of users: 1,000
Project sponsored and funded by Barry Emen and Chris Grant in July, 2007



2. Mosanto preaching point of St Andrews Presbyterian Church of Mzuzu, requested by Rev. Levi Nyondo, senior pastor of the largest Presbyterian church in the Synod of Livingstonia. “This is a very poor, small and needy village in the bush outside Mzuzu City,” Levi explained, “accessible only by 4x4 rugged vehicles. I’ll provide the vehicle and go with you. Come and see.” Number of users: 1,000
Project sponsored, funded and implemented directly by mission team from Westside Presbyterian Church in Washington State in August, 2007



3. Kamphenda I After doing the necessary need assessment and documentation, the Church and Society program of the Presbyterian Synod of Livingstonia requested the help of CitiHope International to provide at least two deep water wells for the neediest of 200 villages in the rural area of Kamphenda. The Church and Society program had already trained a large number of volunteers who are working in the villages for human rights and community development (see attached information). Their next step, once a sponsor was found, was a village well in one of the neediest villages. Number of users: 1,500
First village well project sponsored and funded by Mike and Bonnie Rose of Summit, New Jersey, currently scheduled.

4. Kamphenda II A second village well in Kampendha catchment
Number of users: 1,500.
Sponsored by Mike and Bonnie Rose
Currently scheduled



5 Euthin is another remote preaching point in the growing Methodist circuit served by Rev. Copeland Nkhata that is so disparately in need of a village well. “If God would grant you the grace,” writes Copeland, “it would be pleasant to assist this young congregation with clean water. Many villagers have to walk 3, 4, and 5 kilometers to fetch water for domestic use from streams. And often the water is polluted by animals. A borehole would safeguard lives from dangerous waterborne diseases and reduce mortality. Waterborne diseases often destroy the children and old people. Please help us rescue these precious souls. We thank God because you love Malawi. Your works amongst us are priceless.” Number of users: 2,000
Sponsored by Hopegivers International for implementation in March 2008

6. Kamphenda III third village well in Kampendha , sponsored by Bob and Diane Noelke of Chatham, NJ

7. Kamphenda IV fourth village well in Kampendha , sponsored by Bob and Diane Noelke of Chatham, NJ



Seven in 07 is a very spiritual and motivational number for me. If I get 13 more wells sponsored in 2008, I will have fulfilled my commitment to 20 village chiefs who did not have fresh water in their villages in Malawi. See blog

In March 2008, I will have the joy of retuning to Malawi with some of the village well sponsors to see with our own eyes the difference fresh water makes in a village of 1500. And to celebrate together God’s great gift of living water.



Note: A Village Well project includes: community organizing and grass-roots training, securing local supplies and labor, management of installation of deep water wells strategic areas, adding community garden and agricultural development training, and establishing a system of long-term maintenance and community development.

Sponsors are needed for each village well project at a cost of $10,000.

For information, contact:
Michael J. Christensen, Project Director
11 Ardsleigh Drive\
Madison, NJ 07940
mchriste@drew.edu