A miraculous turnaround in war-torn D.R. Congo
What causes an impoverished village to thrive with hope in a devastating war zone? The answer can be found in four simple words: “Rise up and walk.”
Few regions on earth are more war-torn than North Kivu in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Rwanda’s armed conflict spilled over the border in 2004, plaguing North Kivu with hunger, poverty and death. For over a decade the area was a quagmire of hopelessness as opposing groups battled over political turf and control of the region’s lucrative gold trade.
When World Poverty Solutions (WPS) visited North Kivu in 2014, we found a community in despair. An outbreak of cholera had ravaged the area. People didn’t know how to treat the disease, so they waited for relief agencies to deliver medicines. Yet as often happens, help arrived too late.
Our team encouraged village leaders there were biblical solutions to their problems—that, in fact, God had already provided for them. We pointed out the natural resources and human skills the Lord had given them. We offered lessons from Scripture to help them identify healthy practices for living. Then we challenged them with Peter’s words in Acts 3:6, “What I do have I give to you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!”
A group of villagers responded with faith. Led by Pastor Roger Byangoma, they learned they could do a lot to prevent disease. They began by cleaning up the unsanitary marketplace, channeling standing water away from homesteads, and washing their hands regularly. “People laughed at us in the beginning,” Pastor Roger says. But when death rates dropped, the community took notice.
WPS returned in 2015 and 2016 to find amazing changes in North Kivu. Community members had pooled efforts to plant 3,500 fruit trees to provide nutritional food. Pastor Paluku Kilima challenged his community to open a school, and confident villagers rallied: One cut timber in the jungle, another donated a spare metal sheet, and others gave small donations. The school is now in its second year, with a salaried staff of a principal and teachers who educate 300 children through 6th grade. Local pride swelled when the school was rated in the nation’s top 5 percent.
Thank you for helping to restore hope and dignity to a war-weary people. 100% of your gift goes directly to the work in North Kivu and other crisis areas around the globe. To donate now, you can use our secure donation form. We hope you’ll continue to partner with us in unique opportunities to bring the love and peace of Christ’s gospel to the poorest of the poor. You are making a difference!