Africa: Learning to Read and Write using the Bible
When his parents fled for their lives after civil war broke out in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in November 1996, Jimmy Nkandu was left behind. So, he grew up speaking
French in the DRC believing he was an orphan. When he discovered, years later, that his parents were alive in Zambia, he got there as quickly as he could.
A new life through literacy
Reunited with his family, Jimmy faced a language barrier. He could neither speak, read, nor write English since he grew up speaking French. Through his local church in Zambia,
Nikandu was introduced to Bible League’s Bible-based Literacy ministry. Now, the former refugee is moving towards English proficiency. As he puts it, “I thank God for Bible League because, so far, I can read and write some basics,” he reports.
Now I can read the Bible
Harriet Phiri lives in Zambia’s Kanyama region, a densely populated area where literacy and poverty are the norm. In answer to her many prayers, Harriet’s local church invited Bible League-trained facilitators to train literacy teachers, and Harriet was one of the first students to receive literacy training. “Now I can read and write. This has enabled me to read the Bible,” she says, showing off her copy of the Easy-to-Read English Bible fromwhich she learnt to read.
Guatemala: God’s Word transforms School Children
What does a rainbow mean to a child living in darkness? For many, a rainbow after the rain reminds them of Noah’s ark and a promise God made to humanity. But, a child without a Bible might never know what God is saying to them every rainy day. Bible League partners with ministries in Guatemala to place Scriptures in the hands of school children, in impoverished areas, so they can know the stories of the Bible and learn, early on, that God loves them and desires a relationship with them.
Changes in life direction
Gloria Puga, Director of Education in El Peten, remembers the joy on the face of a boy who received a Bible. “Now that I have a Bible, I promise I’ll read it. I want to know about it and God,” he said. A junior high boy from Flores shared, “I always wanted a Bible but I couldn’t afford one. I stopped going to church. Now that I have a Bible, I’m going back to church with Mom.” Providing Bibles impacts children and influences the direction of their future.
The Director of the National Institute of Education in San Benito wrote how the Bibles changed the school where he worked. “A few years ago, a gang infiltrated our school. The teachers who remained received death threats from some of their students,” he described. “We decided to apply the values taught in the Bible. Bible League provided God’s Word to all of our students and in three years, the school has changed dramatically. The students recognise a need for God and have the chance to know Him better by having their own Bible to read and study.”