Understanding the Need...
Perhaps you are familiar with the tragic civil war that raged in the country of Sierra Leone from 1991-2002, the last of the peace-keeping forces being removed in 2006. Often referred to as the Diamond War, this war - fueled by rebels trained under the guidance of Moamar Quaddafi’s Lybian military training school - left over 50,000 dead, over one million displaced and thousands victimized by amputations, rape and assault. Most of these atrocities were committed at the hands of kidnapped children, forced to be child soldiers, who committed criminal acts against their own will in order to survive. The psychological and spiritual scars from this war run deep. This war, though intense, was the visible evidence of a history of abuses where innocent Sierra Leonean citizens had suffered for centuries at the hands of colonial powers, slave traders, class prejudices, corrupt leaders and power-broking expatriate businesses that robbed them of the benefits of their own natural resources. The results of these abuses are a nation in social, psychological, political and spiritual disarray.
In response to this disarray, multiple partners, compelled by their love and concern for this nation have joined forces to address issues of street children, orphans, troubled youth, frail infrastructure, educational deficiencies, inadequate medical and dental care, and spiritual lostness. Although varied in our focus and skills, our partners are working as a united force to address these issues in a holistic manner under the campaign, Restore Hope: Sierra Leone. Our mission statement reads as follows:
Project Restore Hope is intended to bring hope and sustained health to the nation of Sierra Leone through unified strategies with Sierra Leonean and other international partners that result in transformed lives, stable infrastructure, social responsibility, and capacity for development. Potential strategies include orphan and family care, educational enhancement, workforce development, micro-loans, youth-at-risk programs, business attraction and technology transfer.
- GCPN - Global Connection Partnership Network
- The University of Texas at Arlington, The Africa Program
- Buckner International
- Baylor University, Louise Herrington School of Nursing
- The University of Texas at Arlington School of Social Work
- The University of Texas at Arlington College of Engineering
- The University of Texas at Arlington School of Nursing
- Global Ministries, First Baptist Church of Arlington
- The Evangelical College of Theology, Jui, Sierra Leone
- Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone
- J.R. Ministries
Global Connection Partnership Network has established Non-Government Organizational status in the country of Sierra Leone and in partnership with First Baptist Church of Arlington, Texas, has placed four persons on site to facilitate and coordinate the efforts of all partners. With a land grant given our partnership by The Evangelical College of Theology in Jui, Freetown, Sierra Leone, we will be developing a multi-purpose center and orphan ministries to include foster care, kinship care, educational assistance and orphan sponsorships. Hope Village will be developed in two distinct phases.
How You Can Help...
The first phase of this project requires the construction of a physical presence where the ministries of orphan care training, dentistry, medicine, technology, youth programs, spiritual guidance and volunteer/staff housing can be centered. This center, House of Hope, is due to begin construction in September 2009. The projected cost of Phase I construction is $500,000. Broader partnership efforts will require additional funds.
The beauty of partnership is that we can each bring our unique gifts to the table. We can also join hands in collaborative efforts to accomplish much more together than any one of us can possibly do alone. We offer you many ways to participate in this effort. We ask that you prayerfully consider the financial needs and join us in giving as the Lord leads you.
As Dr. Alusine Jalloh, Founding Director, The Africa Program, UT Arlington and a Sierra Leonean himself, recently stated, “There is no academic program, no measure of financial prosperity, no degree of development that can change Sierra Leone. The nation of Sierra Leone will only be changed by divine transformation of individual lives rooted in an experience of God’s love which will enable Sierra Leoneans to love their neighbors as they love themselves.”
GCPN joins Dr. Jalloh in this conviction. We invite you to join us in this worthy endeavor.