Archives For poverty

haiti 4-edit

by Jess Bauer, California Development Intern

Last summer, I spent three months in Haiti learning about poverty in a hands-on and often heart-wrenching way. I listened to the stories of new friends and experienced the heartbreaking reality of material poverty.

One afternoon, I met an elderly man in Leveque, a village where families resettled after their homes were destroyed by the 2010 earthquake. A relief agency had distributed blue tarps to Leveque after the earthquake to be used as a temporary shelter. The tarps were designed for only a few months of inhabitance—any longer and the extreme heat could cause eye damage. After living in his tarp home for five years, this man was completely blind.

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At HOPE International, we believe that true restoration happens as we heed Christ’s call to abide in Him. Through worship, prayer, and studying God’s Word, HOPE-network clients grow in their faith and find strength to tackle challenges in their lives.

“Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.” John 15:4

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Jeannette Miburo, HOPE Burundi Savings Member

“My spiritual life has been impacted in such a way that now I feel pushed to pray and work for God more than before. … Before, I was very poor, and I was not able to give offerings or tithes in the church. But when I joined the savings groups things changed. Now, I am able to bring offerings and tithes!” Continue Reading…

Fanny is taking a leap forward

Suddenly raising seven children

When Fanny’s sister passed away, leaving four children behind, the choice was clear—she had to adopt them. Already a single mother, Fanny suddenly found herself the sole provider for seven school-age children.

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As one of Malawi’s 2 million small-scale farmers, Fanny set her mind to working hard, knowing that her efforts meant nourishment for her children. She managed to meet her family’s basic needs but struggled to find money for school fees or even soap. “Some months, I wouldn’t have money at all,” she says.

When Fanny heard about savings groups forming at her church, she recalls, “I was the first to sign up.” Saving small amounts of money with her group, Fanny no longer needed to sell her own family’s food for extra cash. It was the boost she needed to leap forward.

Refusing to give up

When severe flooding in early 2015 rendered 230,000 Malawians homeless, Fanny’s crops and home were washed away. Despite the devastating loss, Fanny quickly moved in with her sister next door and used her savings to launch a side business selling used clothing. Even though she lost everything, she determinedly began to rebuild her home.

Less than a year after the floods, Fanny did something few in her community have been able to afford: she paid to install a water tap next to her home to help with irrigation and household chores.

“I can say this is my testimony,” Fanny says. “Before the savings group, I had no business of my own, and my children were suffering from hunger. But now, I am rebuilding my own house, and my goal is to see my children educated.”

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A place to belong

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Joining the savings group has not only provided financial stability for Fanny; it has brought her closer to God and to friends in her community.  An active member of her church, Fanny leads worship and visits those who are ill or grieving. Eager to give back, Fanny’s savings enable her to bring offerings to church—something she wasn’t able to do before.

Fanny’s savings group has given her a sense of belonging. “My challenges have grown less because I am supported,” she says. “My fellow group members encourage me and pray for me. … Since I joined the group, I’m a more joyful person.”

HOPE GIFT CATALOG

Help entrepreneurs leap forward!

Like Fanny, millions of men and women are bursting with skills and talents but lack access to the financial tools needed to leap forward along the path out of poverty. Choose items from HOPE’s gift catalog to play a role in helping families flourish!

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Free bracelet!

With your donation of $25 or more, you’ll receive a leather bracelet, hand-crafted by Rwandan entrepreneurs!*

*Bracelets are available while supplies last.

Photo Credit: enditmovement.com

Today, thousands will mark their hands with a bright red “X,” demonstrating their commitment to ending modern slavery. Since 2013, the END IT movement, a coalition of leading organizations committed to shining a light on slavery, which can include sex trafficking, bonded labor, and forced labor.

In many countries throughout the HOPE network, we serve a population that is vulnerable to human trafficking and forced labor. Traffickers prey on those living in poverty, and several of the countries in which we work have some of the most prominent human trafficking industries in the world. While HOPE does not work directly with anti-trafficking agencies, our work in poverty alleviation addresses many of the root causes of modern slavery. Our approach is to move upstream from the problem in an attempt to prevent the conditions and vulnerability that traffickers prey on. Here’s how:

1. Jobs create opportunities.
With few options to provide for their families, many people living in poverty willingly enter bonded labor. Or, they are baited with the promise of a job in another country, realizing upon arrival that they’ve been lied to. Even more tragically, families in destitute financial situations are often forced to give up one child to feed the rest of their family.* When families have meaningful work to support themselves, they are spared from making these kinds of decisions.

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by Tyson Presnell, HOPE Field Communications Fellow

A journal entry after visiting a savings group in Lilongwe, Malawi

As I stand up to clear off the table, I carry a strange assortment of foods to the pantry: a pumpkin, peanuts (known here as groundnuts), beans, and eggs. You’d think I had just come from the grocery store or stopped at a roadside stand. No, this food was special. It was from my clients.

I traveled to this savings group on the outskirts of Lilongwe, Malawi’s capital. The group was singing as we arrived. Their group name was fitting: Chimwemwe, which is Chichewa for happiness. After we were introduced to the group, they continued their worship. Following a short message on the importance of prayer, it was time for the savings portion of the meeting. The group chose to worship while turning in their savings because they saw it as a time to celebrate. Continue Reading…

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Last month, over 200 golfers joined HOPE International in York, PA, at the Heritage Hills Golf Resort, for a beautiful and sunny day of golf! We are so grateful to our sponsors who helped us make the day a success, and we hope you’ll join us in 2016 for our 16th annual “Drive out Poverty” golf tournament on Friday, September 23. A special thank you to the following sponsors:

Community Banker sponsors

Domuss, Ltd.

Heritage Hills Golf Resort

Men of Iron

Merrill Lynch, The Swift Group

Residential Mortgage Services

Regional Champion sponsors

Advanced Insurance Solutions

Apple Nissan

Esbenshade’s Greenhouse

Hostetler & Church, LLC

Shepherd Real Estate LLC

Stewart Title Guarantee

Susquehanna Bank

Dignity sponsors

Akron Insurance

Associated Insurance Management

Barkas, Inc.

Conestoga Title Insurance Company

Fidelity National Title Insurance

Kaplin Stewart

McKonly & Asbury, LLP

mRelevance

Pine View Enterprises, Inc.

The Simkiss Companies

VAL-CO

Wells Fargo

Empowerment Promoter sponsors

Bare Wealth Advisors

BB’s Grocery Outlet

B.R. Kreider & Son, Inc.

Finance of America

Horst Realty

Lamar King Tournament within a Tournament

Lancaster Mortgage Company

Lesher Mack Sales & Service Inc

M&T Bank

Martin’s Trailside Express

Morgan Stanley

Realty 1

Ron Thompson

Sharp Shopper

Select Security

Speedwell Construction, Inc.

UGI

Weaver Energy, Inc.

Adventure Capitalist sponsor

Aero Energy

Convene

Master’s Advisors, Inc.

Metro Bank

Mid Penn Bank

Modern Eyes Optical

RP Electric

Startup sponsor

Abel Construction

Black Rock Financial Management

Donegal Insurance Group

EK Bare and Sons

Ivy Funds

L Star Management

Lori Miller

Markley Actuarial Services

Pikeland Construction, Inc.

Prudential

RS Investments

Voya

Waterford Management, LLC

Wilkinson Homes, LLC

Akron Insurance

Associated Insurance Management (AIM)

Barkas, Inc.

Conestoga Title Insurance Company

Fidelity National Title Insurance

Kaplin Stewart

McKonly & Asbury, LLP

mRelevance ($4,400)

Pine View Enterprises, Inc.

The Simkiss Companies

VAL-CO

Wells Fargo