Give

Stay Connected

Stay Connected

Stay connected with Hands at Work to hear what is happening on the ground in Africa, and around the world as we unite with the international church to bring hope to the hopeless. Hear what is inspiring us, read stories of transformation among the most vulnerable, and stay informed with how you can serve as we are called together to serve our brothers and sisters in Africa.

Stories of the Drought Crisis

Stories of the Drought Crisis

“I planted 12 meda* of soya beans, I expected to harvest 18-20 x 50 kg bags. I only harvested 2 bags.”

“I planted 20 kg of maize seed, I expected to harvest 60 x 50 kg bags. There is no harvest; the rains just did not come after I planted.”

“I planted 15 kg of maize seed. From planting the same amount of seed last year, I harvested 32 x 50 kg bags. This year I only harvested 12 bags.”

When the Water Runs Dry

Once a plentiful flowing source of water, the river that runs through the community of Baraka, Zambia is now stagnant. A severe lack of rainfall has left the community and its people in a desperate situation. Precious* and her grandmother daily collect water from this river; they don’t know what will happen when the water runs dry. 

 

Give Life this Christmas

Give Life this Christmas

This Christmas, Hands at Work invites you to join us in giving to support the most vulnerable children across Africa. Each day, volunteer Care Workers from the local church care for the poorest children in the poorest communities in the eight countries Hands at Work serves.

Your gift to support a child will bless them with access to education, basic health care, and one nutritious meal per day. Your generosity will not only be a part of bringing life to a child, and encouraging their Care Workers, but Hands at Work believes you too will be blessed as you witness the transformation that occurs in the life of the most vulnerable children when ordinary people reach out to give them hope. Children like Lumumba…

GIVE Life to a Vulnerable Child

GIVE Life to a Vulnerable Child

I came that they may have life and have it abundantly – John 10:10 (ESV)

This Christmas, Hands at Work invites you to join us in giving to support the most vulnerable children across Africa. Each day, volunteer Care Workers from the local church care for the poorest children in the poorest communities in the eight countries Hands at Work serves.

Our Call to Give

Our Call to Give

Hands at Work envisions the local church in Africa united with the international church around the world, serving together to care for the most vulnerable people in the poorest African communities. In the US, Suzette, Michelle and Sara are three members of the Hands at Work US team who have answered this calling on their lives. Here they reflect on their call to GIVE:

Care Workers Intervened to Save Valentina's life

Care Workers Intervened to Save Valentina's life

Valentina* is only 7 years old, yet most of her life has been spent struggling to survive. When her father passed away, her mother was left with five children to care and provide for. In the extremely poor community of Kitabataba, finding income to buy food is almost impossible for the most vulnerable families.

Stay Connected!

Stay Connected!

Stay connected with Hands at Work to hear what is happening on the ground in Africa, and around the world as we unite with the international church to bring hope to the hopeless. Hear what is inspiring us, read stories of transformation among the most vulnerable, and stay informed with how you can serve as we are called together to serve our brothers and sisters in Africa.

The Church: Our Hope for the Future of Africa

The Church: Our Hope for the Future of Africa

Our vision is a challenge for the church. Will the institution that the church has become simply fulfil religious cravings, or will the church spend itself on behalf of the hungry ‘lifting the cause of the fatherless’ and becoming Christ-like in its humility and servanthood. Can religion be as pure and faultless as this?

Buhle and Grace: A Spirit of Giving

Buhle and Grace: A Spirit of Giving

When Buhle was only two years old, her mother passed away and she went to live with her grandmother. With a small widow’s pension as their only income, Buhle and her grandmother struggled to survive. Buhle was left feeling alone as she tried to provide for herself and her grandmother. 

GIVE this Christmas

This Christmas, Hands at Work has an opportunity for you to give to the most vulnerable children in Africa. Your gift will bless a child with access to education, basic health care, and one nutritious meal per day. A child like Chibesa…

Chibesa (middle, yellow shirt) waits in line for his daily nutritious mealChibesa is a six-year-old boy who lives in Chibote, one of the poorest communities in Zambia. Abandoned by his parents, Chibesa has been raised by his aunt, Peggy, who has struggled to provide for her household of 12. She could not send Chibesa to school, and most days he went to sleep without eating. Fortunately, Ruth began visiting Peggy and quickly realised how desperate her family was for even basic support. Ruth is one of many local volunteer Care Workers who are caring for the most vulnerable in their community. She arranged for Chibesa to receive a free daily meal, access to education and basic health care. In love and compassion, Ruth has taken Peggy and her family into her heart. And Peggy, wanting to be a blessing in return, has become a Care Worker!  She walks alongside Ruth ensuring many more children are able to survive, and know they are loved.

Chibesa is receiving love through Ruth and Peggy, and because of this, he has hope.  Through your giving, you can support Care Workers across Africa who desire to be able to provide for the children they care for physically, emotionally and spiritually.  Your generosity will not only bless others, but we believe you too will be blessed as you witness the transformation your support can make in the life of a child.

If you want to give and support the transformation of a child this Christmas, please learn more about the giving options for your country:

Australia | Canada | South Africa | UK | US | Other

You may want to give on behalf of someone else. Download & Print the Gift Cards and distribute to your friends and family. With four cards to choose from, these gift cards tell the stories of Chibesa and three other children who now have hope for life and life abundantly. Through your giving, people in your life can read and share these stories, becoming a voice for the voiceless as well. 

This season, may we all reflect on the birth of Jesus. He came down from heaven to be with us on earth as a human. And like so many children today, he was born into vulnerability. "And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn."-Luke 2:7

Given Freely

The vision of Hands at Work is to see the local Church in Africa effectively caring for the most vulnerable, and unified in this mission with the Church outside Africa. The second part is just as vital as the first. Outside of Africa, support comes from churches, volunteers, advocates, prayer warriors, businesses and more. When people give, and give sacrificially, to the most vulnerable children in Africa, there is transformation happening on both sides: the giver and the receiver. And when people understand that they are blessed to be a blessing, they give freely.

A Church Story

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Daphne with a Care Worker in Oshoek, South AfricaIn Australia, Daphne has been a friend of Hands for over 10 years. She has supported our work and been a voice for the children of Africa in her community, even when she was often the sole voice. But her endurance has been honoured by God. Daphne came to Africa to serve with Hands on the Short Team Service Team in July 2013. When she returned to her church in Perth, and having invited George Snyman to speak to her congregation, they began to support a community. Heart City Church is now supporting 25 children in Welverdiend, South Africa, with the hope to increase this number even further in the future. Heart City Church joins the Sunbury group, also from Australia, who support a further 75 children in Welverdiend at Pfunani Community Based Organisation. Heart City Church is now hoping to send their first team in September 2014 to experience Africa as Daphne has. We praise God for her dedication and His work in the hearts of so many people in Australia.

A Business Story

We are often inspired by how one person’s story of Africa can create a ripple effect. In the US, Lauren Lee, who works as part of the Hands US International Office, shared her passion for the children of Africa with her friend Bill. Bill works for Microsoft and this company has a program where they will potentially match funding for charities. Lauren encouraged Bill to apply to this matching program and his application was successful! Bill contributed 5,000 USD and Microsoft matched this funding, allowing 10,000 USD to be donated to Hands at Work, specifically to the Malawi Service Centre! This support is an amazing example of how we can each use our influence and voice to advocate for the most vulnerable children. 

An Advocate Story

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Jacob Erick with new friends in AfricaIn September 2010, Todd and Katie Wells served in the Democratic Republic of Congo for 7 months, living with Pastor Erick, our Hands at Work Congolese leader. As they returned to Canada, they knew their hearts would never be the same. When they gave birth to their son, they named him Jacob Erick, after the pastor whose life had inspired them. They also decided to raise funds for the community of Kitabataba in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where children were receiving home visits from Care Workers, but had no food security, access to education, or basic health care. In the beginning it was quite difficult. People who had not been to Africa did not understand the level of urgency. But in His mighty faithfulness, God gave Todd and Katie the strength to persevere, and they secured support for 50 children. In September 2013, Todd and Katie returned to the Congo and visited Kitabataba where they witnessed the transformation that has happened over the past couple of years. They could see the part that their support had played, but what impacted them more deeply was seeing the servant hearts of the Care Workers who had become like parents to the 50 children of Nyota Community Based Organisation. They could see Erick’s influence everywhere as the Care Workers displayed his same compassion and love. Also, Erick had the opportunity to meet baby Jacob in Zambia for the first time! Todd and Katie and their friends and family are now increasing the number of children they support to 75 children. This commitment requires sacrifice, but it is a sacrifice that is building God’s kingdom.

As the lives of the children we give to are changed, our own hearts experience a deeper understanding of how God has given everything to us. He gave us His son. “Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.” (Luke 2:11)

This Christmas, may we give thanks with a grateful heart.

The Many Faces of War

Since the first invasion into the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), almost 2 decades ago, more than 5 million people have died in the deadliest conflict the world has seen since the Second World War. It’s an incomprehensible truth when one stops to consider the scale. Each one known to somebody. Each with a face and a name.  Each with a story to tell of a life lived or yet to be lived. The Congo is a beautifully vast and mineral-rich landscape in central Africa but it also bears the scars of wars that have raged for many years and are continuing to terrorise its people. Half of Congo’s inhabitants are under 14 and have only ever known war.

Furaha, as featured in storyFuraha was born in Goma, in Eastern Congo. At just 4 years old, Furaha’s entire existence has been characterised by instability. She is a refugee in her own country, running constantly from the threat of rebel invasion and oppression. The war killed her father. Furaha and her mother desperately sought shelter with other war widows and their children, but food was scare and access to even basic medical supplies was impossible. Desperation is written all over Furaha’s face and yet, Furaha could not be picked out of a crowd. There are millions of children just like her.

In Goma, tens of thousands of people are displaced and find themselves in over-run and unsafe refugee camps which offer little protection or provision for the traumatised and vulnerable. People are too scared to return to their destroyed villages and too damaged by the brutality and oppression they have suffered at the hands of rebels. Women, left traumatised by abuse and rape, bear deep emotional scars, and carry, too, the resultant children. Used as a cruel and barbaric instrument of war, rape will give birth to a new generation of children who will be born into brokenness and chaos.

In one of the refugee camps lives our own ‘Mother Theresa’. A lady whose compassion for the orphaned singled her out in her own village. In Luhonga , a village on the outskirts of Goma, she fought for the children the world does not know. The ones who have only ever known fear. She was there when these children gathered in a hut, all desperate and all terrorised, for their first ever plate of nutritious food. Women like this are named by Hands at Work as ‘Mother Theresa’ because their desire to bring hope and life stands in contradiction to their environment, to their own stories of brutal abuse and to the threat that constantly surrounds them. They are light and life to the most vulnerable. And yet, our Mother Theresa from Luhonga is not in her village caring for the children she has been called to serve. She is too afraid. She remains in the refugee camp and is terrified of returning to her home for fear of another invasion.

Refugee camp outside of GomaAnd yet, the world is unaware. A raging conflict, on a world-war scale, rages in the Congo. And the faces of those most affected are unknown to the world: The children kidnapped to become child soldiers, joining a military regime that killed their own parents, and thousands of women who fled their own homes after they were raped and abused, many of whom had witnessed their own husbands, sons and neighbours being slaughtered.

Hands at Work are 100% committed to reaching the poorest and most vulnerable people in Africa today. And these people include little girls like Furaha and our ‘Mother Theresa’s’ in the DRC. We will stand up for them and make their stories known. We will know their names. We will know their faces. And we will fight for them.

Will you join us?

In Goma, we are working in 2 villages, Luhonga and Buhimba, where poverty and the number of orphans is extremely high, and support services and levels of safety and protection is very low. The threat of rebel invasion and displacement is constant.

But you can join us by doing something amazing with your VOICE, your RESOURCES and your TIME to serve the most vulnerable people in the DRC and across Africa. 

PRAY for children like Furaha and for peace to prevail across the DRC.

SPEAK UP for the men and women who are trying to care for the most vulnerable in their communities and tell others about what is happening in Goma.

To learn more about what it means to ‘speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves’ in countries across Africa, visit our Advocate page.

SUPPORT Hands at Work financially to ensure we can continue to travel into the DRC and to support the work in the poorest villages with the most vulnerable children.

To give towards our work in the DRC or to find out more, contact Hands at Work in Africa: info@handsatwork.org

First day of Care Point feeding in Luhonga village, Goma

One small church in UK: they saw, they told others and together they became a part of healing in Africa

When Iain and Martin touched down on African soil in February 2013, it was to be the start of something special for them personally, and for their church back in the UK. Long term volunteers, Dan and Jen Waspe invited Iain and Martin to come and see for themselves what is happening through Hands at Work in Africa.  Iain is the pastor, and Martin a church member from Dan’s childhood church, Battisford Free Church. Iain and Martin were keen to find out more about what Hands at Work is doing in Africa and to explore how they could be part of God’s story of transformation in a broken community. They wanted to challenge their church in the UK, to give sacrificially to more than just an organisation; they wanted to have a personal connection to their giving. Iain and Martin could see the privilege of their church becoming true partners with Hands at Work.

In the 2 weeks that Iain and Martin spent in South Africa, they were exposed to true brokenness and suffering. They saw for themselves just how devastated many communities are and how the orphan crisis continues to sweep across Africa. They saw vulnerability in its most severe form. Iain and Martin also experienced the beauty, vibrancy, richness and joy of Africa. They served alongside both local African people and volunteers from Hands at Work. They became part of the Hands family.

Without Condition

Ashley Humphreys, is a volunteer from Canada and has been serving with Hands at Work in South Africa and Zambia since May 2012. She reflects on her time in Africa and a recent encounter with a special Care Worker, Jean.

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When I came to volunteer in Africa, I said I was coming to give.  Give my time, my passion, my resources.  Soon after arriving, I realized I wasn’t very good at giving at all.  I came into living in a community of people from all over the world and learned that at Hands at Work, we live as a family.  We live by the core values of servanthood and giving freely.  Freely.  Not conditionally.  It didn’t take me long to realize I lived by giving conditionally.  Maybe it’s because I grew up in a first world country.  Maybe it’s because deep in my heart there is a selfish girl who doesn’t want to share, who wants things to be about her sometimes, who wants people to recognize when she does something well.  I saw this ugly side of myself in little things.  Someone would ask to borrow my milk and I’d say yes but I’d think, “Now I’m going to run out and I can’t get to the grocery store for a week! They should really be more organized.”  I hated myself for thinking that way.  Why couldn’t I just let it go? Why couldn’t I give and be happy my family member knew I was someone they could ask?  Why didn’t it feel like a privilege to give to my brothers and sisters?  I started praying God would help me give freely – give without condition, give to glorify Him, give because His word says “Each of you must give as you have made up your mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” (2 Cor 9: 7)

When I came to volunteer in Africa, I said I was coming to give. Give my time, my passion, my resources. Soon after arriving, I realized I wasn’t very good at giving at all. I came into living in a community of people from all over the world and learned that at Hands at Work...we live by the core values of servanthood and giving freely. Freely—not conditionally.
— Ashley Humphreys, volunteer from Calgary, Canada
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In Zambia I met Jean, a Care Worker at Chibuli Community Based Organization.  I was honoured to walk with her through the community and go on home visits with her.  The children we visited would cuddle up to her as we sat outside.  She would wrap her arms around them, all of them children who have been orphaned and are living with aging grandparents.  We walked so far through the tall grass and huts of Chibuli to get to four homes, something Jean is used to doing every week.  On the long walk back to the Care Centre after our visits, Jean started talking to me about how to be a Care Worker, it was like she was training me for my future as one.She said, “It was hard at first, giving to the children.  When I started it was really hard.  But, it gets easier!  I’ve been a Care Worker for 3 years.  I just kept doing it and it got easier.  Now there are children in my home all the time.  I have my 3 children, but I have many more.  I tell all the children to come to my house and I will bathe them.  And feed them.  I say ‘bring your clothes!’  So they come, they bring their clothes, I wash their clothes and I wash their bodies and I give them food.”  She said it with joy and with love. 

God spoke right through Jean to me: Giving gets easier. I can give with my heart like Jean does.  Not today, but maybe one day.  It’s a strange thing, to think of practising giving. But it’s exactly what we can do as we seek out God and grow in our understanding of who Jesus truly is.  As I have tried to answer God’s call to care for and love others, He has shown me how to give without condition.  After a year of volunteering in Africa and praying about giving, it is a little bit easier.  I still have lots of moments where I see my hard heart, but I have more where I feel the love of God come through me.  We all have walls around our hearts, and ideas in our heads that make us second guess giving freely.  We have to keep fighting through.  Keep praying and asking God to radically transform us so we build His Kingdom in everything we do.