Field notes, perspectives, stories & updates from IAFR's work in Kakuma Refugee Camp, Kenya
The three day conference for pastors from the refugee camp and local community ended this evening. Over 200 pastors participated. Kenyans, Ethiopians, Sudanese, South Sudanese, Congolese, Burundian, and Yemenese were in the mix. Some come from tribal communities that are at war with one another int heir homelands. But here, they were together. Their faith in Jesus makes it possible for them to transcend their many differences.
Today's meetings included speakers from the local government. This was mutually beneficial as the churches felt seen and heard, and the officials had opportunity to meet with the pastors.
Of course, with a group of 200 pastors, there was plenty of preaching and teaching too this week. As they left the KISOM campus that IAFR helped them build, I could see that the brothers and sisters had been refreshed and that new connections were made with one another. May God add God's blessing. These women and men do the heavy lifting of keeping hope alive in the camp.
IAFR sponsored this conference thanks to a generous donation from a partner church in the USA. We are so grateful to be a conduit through which the Church at Large can partner with our brothers and sisters here.
The network of churches in Kakuma celebrated 27 years since its founding during the conference with a special cake. There was so much joy.
I come away encouraged to see the KISOM buildings used in this way. IAFR financial partners funded the buildings over several years. It is so much more than a training school for pastors here.
I spoke with the local World Vision leader here before leaving. She shared how they too are thankful for the KISOM campus as they oftennuse it for their training conferences.
I found these guys when I went to take a photo inside the new KISOM kitchen (see previous post). I asked if they were helping with the cooking during the conference. They said, "No. We are not cookers, we are eaters." It made me smile.
IAFR has been serving people in Kakuma refugee camp since 2010. The camp population is about 250,000 people (mostly women and children). They came to find temporary refuge here from war, persecution and gross violations of human rights. But for many, "temporary" refuge lasted fordecades with no end in sight.
We visit Kakuma 2 times annually, during which time this blog is most active.
Visit the Kakuma page on the IAFR.org website to learn more!
We partner with United Refugee and Host Churches (URHC) - a refugee initiated association of over 160 churches from within the camp and surrounding host community.
We also partner with Windle International Kenya (WIK), an exceptional humanitarian agency through which IAFR provides secondary school scholarships for girls.
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