How You Made A Difference In Nigeria

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Image: Food aid distribution in north-eastern Nigeria.
By Beth Ross | 7 August 2018

While the south of Nigeria is majority Christian, the 12 northern states are governed by Sharia (Islamic) law. Christianity here comes with a high cost. In recent years Boko Haram has killed and displaced thousands of believers. The northern government denies Christians basic access to things like medical care, education and humanitarian aid.

In 2017, Nigeria, South Sudan, Somalia and Yemen were reportedly suffering from the worst famine since World War 2. Around 20 million people were at risk of starvation and even the UN’s attempts to raise enough money to support them had fallen short. Christians in northern Nigeria were among those suffering the most, excluded from receiving emergency food relief because of their faith in Jesus. 

 

The Islamic State Of Africa

Since 2009 the Islamic extremist group Boko Haram have tried to take over the country. In 2015, they pledged allegiance to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. Two core parts of their mission are to destroy the church and establish an Islamic governed state. 

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Image: Food distribution in Nigeria.

Thousands of churches have been destroyed, businesses shut down and many Christians have been abducted – including the 276 Chibok girls. Thousands have been forced to flee their homes and now live in makeshift camps. Families haven’t been able to farm for three years, and their food reserves have run out. Now there is a man-made famine ravaging northern Nigeria. 

This famine wasn’t caused by a natural disaster. It was caused by war.

Your Response 

Your help provided food packs for 15,000 families – that’s 75,000 people! Each family received a 50kg bag of beans, 100kg of maize, and money for rent, oil and soap.

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Image: A woman receives food and relief aid.

Your help provided emergency relief for 75,000 Christians in Nigeria.

“We are so grateful for this food aid,” said Pastor Amos. “Please tell the people who gave towards this aid that we will never forget what they have done for us. This aid you gave us will last people up to three months. We have never experienced such help.”

“You have done what the church in Lassa could not do because we have become so weak you have demonstrated God’s concern for them. You have demonstrated the love of God. On Sunday, people came to church en masse to praise God. And they thank the people who provided this aid." 

Rhoda, a local believer, lined up with thousands of others at the local church. When she received the food aid you helped provide, she couldn’t help but cry and hug the nearest worker.

“When God says: ‘Never will I leave you nor forsake you,’ he was talking to me. Who am I that you send help to me? I am speechless. You are indeed angels sent by God to wipe my tears away. 

“I hated Muslims and swore never to help them even if they are at the point of death, because they always deny us any support. But this support I received through Open Doors is unconditional and it has helped me to alter my hatred for Muslims. I have found a new perspective.”

Walk To Water

In September 2017, 88 groups across Australia and New Zealand did Walk To Water for persecuted Christians in Nigeria. 

Of the $94,000 goal to fund 12 boreholes over the next three years, build health clinics and schools, you raised around $100,000!

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Image: Students drink from a borehole built by our partners in Nigeria.

Boreholes are being built in 12 Christian communities where Christians are denied access to clean water. 

In October 2017, we sent a team to Nigeria.

“Before the borehole was built, the nearest water source was a borehole located next to a Mosque. Local Christians weren’t allowed to use it. They had to walk several kilometres to get water for cooking, cleaning, washing and drinking,” said Anne, an Open Doors worker from New Zealand. 

“The borehole now serves the Christian community, and a Christian school that has been built next to the borehole.”

Thank you to everyone who was a part of Walk To Water 2017!

YOUR HELP MAKES A DIFFERENCE

Your ongoing support helps Open Doors respond immediately to the needs of the persecuted church.

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