The Nigerian orphanage: Please pray for the children of the orphanage who are in a state of trauma caused by shocking attacks by Sunni Muslim Fulani herdsmen nearby. The killings at a store that is sometimes visited by staff and older children really caused great fear. Most of the children at the orphanage have lost one or both of their parents to Islamic terror, and the vicious murders at the small store resurrected memories of the attacks at their own homes.
Feeding plan: The Religious Freedom Coalition is continuing the feeding plan for the orphanage again in 2021. This is the third year we have supplied funds for meals with protein for every meal.
Prior to our taking over the responsibility of feeding the children, their only protein food was two eggs per week. All other meals were mainly gruel, which is a form of hot cereal. The gruel occasionally had some fish meal added to it, but children cannot grow with so little protein.
Currently the cost of the meals is $3270.00 per month. In addition, we have funded the operation of a farm for the past two years to supply potatoes, corn, peanuts, and vegetables.
Benue State IDP Camp: Tens of thousands of the Christians driven from their homes by Islamic terror fled to Benue State because it is 95% Christian and has a Christian governor and legislature. Unlike the northern Nigerian states that have Islamic Sharia law, Benue is operated as a fair and open secular state.
But Benue State is faced with a real crisis in housing and feeding tens of thousands of Christian refugees who were run off their land by Sunni Muslim Fulani herdsmen or the Boko Haram. There is no aid from the central government.
The IDP camps have no schools except those operated by non-profit organizations such as the one operated by the Tiv Tribe. The king and queen of the Tiv Tribe are Christians, and the current king was the first to be sworn in on a Bible. The Tiv Tribe’s non-profit is offering a Christian based education for kindergarten through sixth grade at the IDP camps.
The teachers are volunteers from the Tiv Tribe and most of the classes will be outside in the sun, or in the rain during rainy season.
I have spent some time talking with Queen Felicia Ayatse and she appealed to me to help build some of the buildings to keep the children out of the sun and rain. The cost is not that great, since labor in Nigeria is not very high.
One building with three classrooms can be built for under $30,000.
The cost per child of textbooks, workbooks and book bags ranges from $39.25 per child to $52.50 per child depending on the class level, with the highest cost being for 6th grade. But at this point the primary goal is to build some of the buildings.
With funds that were previously donated for Nigeria, I can authorize the construction of one building at an IDP camp. But I believe we can do better than that, as there are thousands of displaced children who need some form of education, and their education is better available from the Tiv Tribe which is the largest in Benue State and Christian in nature.
Please pray with me for the expansion of this program to aid displaced Christian children.
William J. Murray, President