To all who have donated to the Have a Heart and BeFree fundraising initiatives.
We wanted to take this opportunity to thank you personally for the support you have given to Elim Missions through the Have a Heart Fundraising initiative. Your generosity is deeply appreciated and we are sure that you will be delighted to know that, over the past three years, you have raised in excess of £20,000!!
This is an incredible achievement. All of the money raised from Have a Heart goes to support the Elim Missions Be Free Campaign, which is our stand against human exploitation. The money raised to date has been distributed largely in two countries, Cambodia and Pakistan, and we want to just take a few moments of your time to update you on our projects there.
The history of Cambodia is one stained by the civil war in the 1970s which led to the genocide of over two million nationals, during the reign of the notorious Khmer Rouge. Many people died in what has become known as The Killing Fields.
Sadly, one of the legacies of this situation is poverty, which has led to sex tourism in Cambodia, taking advantage of lower income families and an increase in exploitation of children in the sex trade.
Seeing the plight of many young women caught up in this industry, Elim Cambodia responded by establishing the Be Free Centre in the capital city Phnom Penh. The vision of Be Free Cambodia is to see lives restored, hearts mended and women with lives filled with God’s joy and peace!
At the centre young women who have been rescued from a life of abuse and human exploitation come in to a programme of healing, rehabilitation, mentoring and discipling. They engage in Bible study and are taught English, skills in handicraft and other life skills to equip them for life beyond the Be Free programme. Up to eight girls can participate in the year long programme. Some who join, although young, often have children of their own who are cared for by the staff at Elim Cambodia’s Early Learning Centre.
During the 7 years since Be Free Cambodia was established, 44 girls have gone through the programme, 39 have made commitments to Christ, 27 have been baptised and none have returned to the commercial sex trade!
The Manager of the Be Free Centre is a young woman called Sokim, who herself, graduated from the Be Free programme. Sokim is a Khmer national and came from a background of abuse and exploitation. You can hear her incredible story by watching the video below:
During the past year Elim Missions has set up an online shop called Shop With Integrity. Here you will find beautiful jewellery and other goods all hand made by the girls in our Be Free programme. You may wish to support Be Free further by purchasing from the shop using the link below:
Shop With Integrity
ALL ITEMS MADE BY ELIM BE FREE
CENTRE IN PHNOM PENH, CAMBODIA
Helping to break the cycle of poverty,
human trafficking and exploitation.
Modern day slavery is a term which you have probably become familiar with. This is never more apparent than in Pakistan where ‘bonded labour’ is prevalent. This is a practice in which employers give high-interest loans to workers whose entire families then have to work at very low wages to pay off the debt. In many situations this debt is never paid off. In the UK we are familiar with the term ‘loan shark’ and we understand the debilitating lifestyle of debt that people get into. It is the same in Pakistan, but the situation there is even more crippling because of the severe lack of any kind of benefits or the means to meet the most basic human needs.
Elim in Pakistan is doing an amazing work to help these children. The only way out of this existence is education and so Elim is providing excellent education at Grace School. The school has over 200 children in attendance and is looking to build more classrooms. In the past few weeks we have been able to raise enough funds to buy a bus, which will enable more enslaved children to go to school and break the cycle of poverty which they have been born into.
Another project is Little Bethel, where again, your generous giving is providing vital support. Little Bethel, was birthed in 2015 in Northwest, Pakistan. Here we help young girls who have experienced unimaginable tragedies and are often victims of violence, extreme poverty, sexual abuse, physical and psychological trauma, trafficking, malnutrition and impaired development. Elim Pakistan provides these girls with a home, food, education and opportunities to live a quality life in a loving Christian environment.
The vision of Little Bethel is to build a society which loves and accepts vulnerable girls so as to attain healing of their emotional wounds, build their confidence, and create space and opportunities to facilitate the development of their talents so that they can live in dignity, respect and manage their own lives independently.
I hope that by reading this ‘Thank You’ letter, you can get a glimpse of how the money you raise is making a difference in the lives of so many vulnerable people. If you would like to know more about any of our projects please do not hesitate to contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Finally, we would like to thank Leanne Mallett, the Aspire Director and her amazing team of women who have faithfully supported the work of Elim Missions Be Free. We have been blessed and honoured to partner with Elim Aspire and look forward to working together in 2021.
Read the full newsletter here
Elim International Missions Director