Today we had the opportunity to meet with Andrew, The 410 Bridge Country Director, at the office in Nairobi and hear from him about the development that is taking place in the 14 communities they are currently working in. Andrew has worked for various organizations and at one time was overseeing the southern half of Africa for a NGO that focused on the HIV/AIDS crisis. He is a gifted leader with a passion to see the people of Kenya become empowered to change their communities through vision and unity in the Body of Christ.
The vision of The 410 Bridge is unique and that’s why we love it! With the billions of dollars of aid that is pumped in to Africa every year and the small amount of sustainable change, it’s time to think about our approach differently. We talk a lot with Journey students about the concept of actions and results and do so by starting with the definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. In many ways, this is how the church approaches “missions” today. We gather food, clothing, and supplies, send a team to go and build something, maybe participate in some type of evangelism, and then return home and tell everyone what we’ve done.
We asked Andrew today, this question, after hearing the stories of sustainable change that is taking place across Kenya: Why aren’t other NGOs catching on to the model that empowers local leaders to do for themselves, minimizes time spent on relief efforts but instead, focuses more on rehabilitation of the whole person and the whole community?
The answer is, "it’s messy, it takes time, it requires relationship and discipleship in addition to the typical demands of missions." Andrew explained it like this:
What a blessing it is to have the opportunity to expose our team to a different concept in missions, one that we think is very attuned to how God designed us to work together for His glory!
We are heading to Ngaamba (pronounced: Gom-buh) to join our friends to work together, investing in the next generation. We will be there for 10 days and are excited about camping and doing life with the people of Ngaamba. Thank you for your prayers and encouragement. Please feel free to leave comments for your students or staff on the blog and I will make sure your messages are passed along.