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Along a dusty, crumbling road, 15 minutes from Gokwe Town Centre in the Midlands Region of Zimbabwe, two villages are scattered across the southern African landscape – Bandawa and Mabuyani.
Earlier this month, I spent a few precious days with people in those two communities who, with the support of All We Can, are overcoming the challenges in their lives.
All We Can is supporting several initiatives in Gokwe, enabling people to take control of their lives and build hope for the future by generating income. Nine people from Bandawa and Mabuyani villages have formed a group to rear and sell chickens, and I’ve seen how that simple idea is changing lives. The group’s profits are being spent on survival – getting food to last until the next harvest – but also on investing in the future; paying school fees, varying their children’s diets, expanding homesteads, and buying chickens or goats of their own.
These are highly significant changes for people battling on the poverty line, but perhaps even more transformative has been their ability to come together in a time of need. We heard stories about how they have supported each other and are ‘holding things in common’, like the early church of Acts 2. As they are discovering; sharing resources, working together and the companionship of relying on each other is truly bringing about change.
As one woman shared with me: “It is being together that makes us joyful, and that helps us.”
What about me, as I return to my comfortable life? What about us, as we journey with these people over the coming months? What about you, as you read this? Can we come together too, and stand with people in need?
This year, All We Can is inviting you to join with the people of Gokwe and do all you can so some of the poorest communities around the world can be transformed. Will you join us? Perhaps your church would benefit from catching something of that spirit of togetherness – find out about becoming an All We Can Partner Church.
And please pray, as so many of the people I met asked us to, “that we might be able to continue this work and have a better future.”
Tim works at All We Can as Churches and Volunteers Manager and is based in Yorkshire. In this role, he leads the Churches team, speaks at events and leads worship, helping to raise awareness and support for All We Can's inspiring work. Tim is a lifelong Methodist and spent his younger years in the south Caribbean as part of a family of mission partners.