2016 Zambia Update

Finding Joy!

A movement of the gospel that multiplies. 

Photo Above: Visiting a family at home that received a new wheelchair for their grandmother.

It is estimated that at least 100 million children and adults worldwide are in need of a wheelchair but cannot afford one. Some international organizations have shown that the number could be as high as 6% of the population in some developing countries. A wheelchair can truly make a profound and life-changing difference in the life of the person and their family.

ECW had the opportunity to work alongside Global Aid Network (GAiN) and Life on Wheels Zambia on a week-long mission trip that was designed to provide training in wheelchair fitting and discipleship.  This training allows the Zambians to provide for and maintain contact with the disabled in their community.  A disabled person in Zambia is greatly impacted by societal barriers, such as lack of mobility aides, transportation, discriminatory attitudes and religious syncretism that believes that those with disabilities are “cursed” and should be avoided. This belief informs our selection of Partners and projects; we aim to have an impact upon all facets of disability within Zambia by working with Life on Wheels, the local church and other local organizations in breaking down institutional and attitudinal barriers at all levels.

One highlight of this trip was the hosting of a pastor’s dinner. Our participants, working with Life On Wheels Zambia, had invited pastors from all over the city, representing many different denominations, in order to provide awareness of the needs for those with disabilities and their desire to go and participate in the local church. Moving testimonies were given and many pastors were interested in developing a disability ministry within their own church!

Vickie with friends
Vickie Blackson with new friends at the Luke 14 dinner.

Another highlight of this trip was facilitating a Luke 14 dinner.  The Bible says, “Then, addressing his host, Jesus said, “When you give a luncheon or a dinner party, don’t invite your friends or your brothers or relations or wealthy neighbors, for the chances are they will invite you back, and you will be fully repaid. No, when you give a party, invite the poor, the lame, the crippled and the blind. That way lies real happiness for you. They have no means of repaying you, but you will be repaid when good men are rewarded—at the resurrection.” -J.B Phillips  So, we invited families impacted by disability and had a wonderful time of fellowship and sharing the love of Jesus.

After the training, we were able to leave behind 160 wheelchairs for the graduates to give away after we were gone.  We are also currently working with our local partners to develop a day program to give those with disabilities the opportunity to engage in meaningful individual and group activities focusing on the development of interpersonal, social and vocational skills. Our team experienced the joy of equipping and encouraging Zambians to take an active role in loving well and meeting the mobility needs in their community.

As we celebrate God’s blessing in helping disabled children in Zambia grow in freedom with their mobility and a brighter future of tomorrow, we remind you that you can get involved to help us further strengthen our work! You can make a donation which will be invested so we can reach countless more disabled children in Zambia. If your workplace would like to get involved, we’d be delighted to have your company be a part of future stories. Click here to make a donation: Donate

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