May 20, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – GFA World (Gospel for Asia) founded by K.P. Yohannan, whose heart to love and help the poor has inspired numerous charities like GFA World Canada, to serve the deprived and downcast worldwide, issued this third part of a Special Report update on girls facing decreased opportunity and increased violence, the young victims who remain hidden in the shadow of the COVID 19 pandemic.

Mother with her son and daughter in front of an outdoor toilet gifted through GFA World donors
This mother no longer needs to worry about her young daughter as her family now has safety and dignity through the generous Christmas gift of a toilet provided through a Gospel for Asia (GFA) donor.

Fostering Safety and Education

While meeting the basic needs of girls, non-profits and communities and families must also work to value and protect girls and their education. Malala Fund is partnering with organizations and governments in several developing nations to promote digital learning, secure education funding for girls and ensure girls’ mental and physical well-being during school closures.[33]

Malala Yousafzai, Malala Fund Co-Founder
Malala Yousafzai, Malala Fund Co-Founder Photo by Dr. Flavia Bustreo, Instagram

“Our goal should not be a return to the way things were but instead a renewed commitment to the way the world should be, a place where every girl can learn and lead.”[34]

Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers have encouraged communities to promote girls’ education, even during the pandemic. Last October, Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers in one community held a small International Day of the Girl celebration at the local church, where regional pastors and a Women’s Fellowship leader shared about the importance of valuing girls.

“Children are a gift from God; they are His reward,” explained the Women’s Fellowship leader, referencing Psalm 127.

International Day Of The Girl Child observed in GFA World church
To mark the International Day of the Girl Child, Gospel for Asia (GFA World) held an event at a local church during the COVID-19 pandemic in October 2020, to promote the importance of girls’ education, and highlight ways to value daughters, and to distribute pens and chocolate bars to those in attendance, and pray for each girl present.

One of the pastors then prayed for each girl present while the other attendees lifted their hands toward the girls in a sign of agreement with his prayer of blessing. At the end of the program, the girls each received a pen and a chocolate bar.

These may seem like small gifts, but even small ways of showing respect for girls can impact a community.

“I acknowledged the fact that a girl child is a great blessing for the family, church and in our society, who must not be considered as a burden, rather an instrument for source of blessings,” said one woman present.

“A girl child must not be shown any partiality from her parents nor put down without knowing her potential. … She must be educated well and needs to be motivated,” shared a 15-year-old girl who attended.

As churches, non-profits and governments work together to help girls reach their potential, girls will most likely have safer communities. Parents who value their daughters will probably spend more time with them, engage them in conversation more often, and help them to develop healthy relationships. In countries where technology is available, this means parents will safeguard their daughters’ online experience.

As families and communities choose to embrace and educate their daughters, girls will face a lower risk of trafficking, violence and abuse.

Group of young women / girls
Over the next three years, Malala Fund is addressing the immediate and long-term implications of the pandemic on girls’ education in five ways: 1. Keep girls learning through school closures; 2. Re-enroll girls to catch up on missed lessons; 3. Support teachers with resources and training needed to deliver a quality education; 4. Strengthen education systems against future crises; 5. Ensure girls’ physical and psychological well-being in the classrooms. Photo by Dr. Flavia Bustreo, Instagram

Fighting Injustice

A mother, daughter and child in Ethiopia, where child marriages are common.
Ethiopia – east of Addis Ababa: The Hunger Project is actively working with Her Choice to end child marriages by setting up Girls Clubs and making sanitary pads available. In this way teenage girls can attend school as much as possible. Alemtsheya was able to ask the Girls Club for help when her parents wanted to marry her at the age of 15. “My step-mother suddenly found me a man who wanted to marry me and he had a good income. My parents liked that. But I didn’t like that at all! I wanted to stay in school and learn a profession. But my parents didn’t want to listen to me.” Photo by Her Choice

While creating safe environments for girls is key, organizations and governments must also work together to end child marriage and trafficking and provide justice and care to girls who have already been victimized.

In 134 countries, child marriage (marriage where at least one partner is under age 18) can happen if a parent, judge or authority consents.[35] In the United States, several states allow for child marriage if a parent consents. North Carolina and Alaska allow a girl to be married at 14 if she is pregnant.[36] In 2002, North Carolina received a marriage application from a 57-year-old wanting to marry a 17-year-old.[37] Because of exceptions in the law, a teenage girl may be pressured or even forced into marriage by her parents or others, so advocates suggest that governments should keep the marriage age at 18—with no exceptions.[38]

Calling on governments to remove exceptions to the legal marriage age can protect girls from experiencing statutory rape and/or being forced to marry someone who may have abused them. It can help these girls grow up with a better chance of finishing school and choosing a partner when they are old enough to know what is right for them.

As churches, non-profits and governments work together to help girls reach their fullest potential, girls will most likely have safer communities. And as families within communities choose to embrace and educate their daughters, girls will face a lower risk of trafficking, violence and abuse.

The Dominican Republic reached a milestone this year in the fight against child marriage: On January 6, the nation’s president approved a bill removing any grounds for child marriage.[39] Now that marriage is prohibited for anyone under age 18 in the Dominican Republic, girls there will be less vulnerable to human trafficking and abuse.

Portrait of a girl
It is estimated that nearly 30 MILLION people are being trafficked worldwide. The average lifespan of a trafficking victim is 7-10 years, and the average age of sex trafficking victims is 13 years old. Girls are at a higher risk.

Meanwhile, despite the pandemic, organizations such as International Justice Mission, Freedom Firm and Exodus Cry have continued their work to rescue girls (and other victims) from trafficking, bring justice to traffickers and provide care to survivors.

One victory in the fight against trafficking occurred in the success of the Traffickinghub campaign, which has been shining a light on the prevalence of the abuse of women and children found on the website Pornhub.[40] The Traffickinghub campaign, along with a New York Times editorial by Nicholas Kristof, drew attention to this and eventually encouraged government leaders and businesses to investigate allegations that Pornhub was profiting from child pornography and rape.[41] Eventually, Visa, Mastercard and Discover refused to process transactions on the site, and Pornhub had to remove nearly 80 percent of its videos. Meanwhile, senators have introduced two bills in Congress to help protect women and girls from pornography being posted online without their consent; one bill makes it easy for victims to sue platforms like Pornhub, and another requires such platforms to provide proof of age and consent for the individuals appearing in videos.[42]

Malala Yousafzai, Malala Fund Co-Founder
130 million girls were already out of school before the pandemic. Now 20 million more might never return. COVID-19 is creating a global girls’ education crisis. That’s why Malala Fund is working to ensure girls can keep learning during and after the crisis. Around the world, they’re funding local activists and education leaders, helping girls continue their education from home and fighting for policies that will allow them to safely return when schools reopen. Photo by Malala Fund, Facebook

A New Beginning

Portrait of a girl in darkness
COVID-19 has been making the lives of girls more difficult and dangerous. Months of poverty, neglect and violence have the potential to derail girls’ futures. For girls, a single mistake—or a single experience of abuse—can yield years of pain or injustice.

Serena, one of the women interviewed by Kristof, was 14 when a classmate asked her to send him a naked video of herself. She did, and he posted it on Pornhub without her consent. As classmates mocked her for it, she fell down a spiral of shame, suicide attempts and drug addiction.[43]

“A whole life can be changed because of one little mistake,” she told Kristof.[44]

Making mistakes is a normal part of a child’s development. But for girls, the cost of a “mistake” is often too high. Trusting someone who turns out to be untrustworthy or failing to stay safe online could entrap a girl in years of abuse and exploitation. For some girls, lacking a strong family or support system simply endangers them, apart from any decisions they have made. Girls’ risks are increasing, whether they are making “mistakes” or not.

For Alexis Martin, one mistake was trusting a man who ended up trafficking her.[45] Now, although life on parole has its hardships, she is free from trafficking and free from prison. She has been living with a mentor and working to save money, buy a car and attend college. She now goes by Kee, a shortened version of her middle name, to remind herself that she is a new person.[46]

Young girl holding a chalkboard with Education written on it
“If girls learn one thing from my life so far, I hope it’s that speaking out about the issues they care about can make a difference, no matter their age.” — Malala

For girls, a single mistake—or a single experience of abuse—can yield years of pain or injustice. COVID-19 has been making their lives more difficult and more dangerous. Months of poverty, neglect and violence have the potential to derail girls’ futures. Like Alexis, girls who have endured trauma can gain a fresh start, but they will need support, advocacy and help to break the grip of destructive forces on their lives. That’s why it’s more vital than ever to provide girls with safe, nurturing environments and to bring justice and aid to those who’ve been abused.

There is much work to be done, but organizations, communities and governments can work together to equip girls with education; protect them from trafficking, child marriage and violence; and help girls who have been exploited find restoration. The COVID-19 pandemic will have years of consequences, but with God’s help, we can prevent it from destroying girls’ lives. We can witness a new beginning.


Give to Help Girls at Risk »

If you want to support girls in South Asia and Africa, consider a one-time donation to help young victims who have been delivered from desperate situations in their lives, but are still struggling everyday. Your gift will provide for their pressing needs, while we locate permanent sponsors to cover their monthly needs to remain in school.


Read the rest of this Gospel for Asia – Transforming Communities (GFA World) Special Report: Young Victims Remain Hidden in Pandemic’s Shadow  Part 1, Part 2


About GFA World

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national workers bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In GFA World’s latest yearly report, this included thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 1,200 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 260,000 needy families, and teaching providing hope and encouragement available in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry. GFA World has launched programs in Africa, starting with compassion projects in Rwanda. For all the latest news, visit our Press Room at https://gfanews.org/news/.


Read more blogs on GFA World, National Missionary Workers, World Missions and the COVID 19 Pandemic on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

GFA’s Statement About Coronavirus

Learn more by reading this Special Report from Gospel for Asia on the Lord’s work in 2020 through GFA and the partnerships worldwide while following Him in His work in 16 nations, including Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal.


Learn more about Gospel for Asia: Facebook | YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | SourceWatch | Integrity | Lawsuit Update | 5 Distinctives | 6 Remarkable Facts | 10 Milestones | Media Room | Widows & Coronavirus | Endorsements | 40th Anniversary | Lawsuit Response | International Offices | Missionary and Child Sponsorship | Transforming Communities through God’s Love

Notable News about Gospel for Asia: FoxNews, ChristianPost, NYPost, MissionsBox

Read what 25 Christian Leaders are affirming about GFA World.

This Special Report originally appeared on gfa.org.

May 18, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – GFA World (Gospel for Asia) founded by K.P. Yohannan, has been the model for numerous charities like GFA World Canada, to help the poor and deprived worldwide, reveals a troubling new report for World Water Day on March 22 — a growing shortage and scarcity of the planet’s most “precious” resource, water, could lead to “dire consequences” worldwide — including the Western U.S. — as hot, arid regions get thirstier.

Growing scarcity, shortage of the most precious resource, water, could lead to dire consequences worldwide -- a new GFA World report reveals.
WORLD ON BRINK OF ‘DIRE’ WATER SHORTAGE: Growing scarcity of the planet’s most “precious” resource could lead to “dire consequences” worldwide — including the Western U.S. — as hot, arid regions get thirstier, a troubling new report for World Water Day on March 22 reveals. The report, Water: An Increasingly Scarce Resource That Is Precious As Gold, from GFA World says global demand is expected to surge more than 50% in the next 20 years.

Surging global population, urban development and rising temperatures could leave billions worldwide struggling to find enough water to drink within the next two decades, according to the report Water: An Increasingly Scarce Resource That Is Precious As Gold.

“The consequences are dire,” says the report by global humanitarian agency GFA World. “Areas could become uninhabitable; tensions over how to share and manage water resources like rivers and lakes could worsen; more political violence could erupt.”

Water shortages contributed to both the Boko Haram insurgency in Nigeria and the civil war in Syria, the report says, noting: “Water scarcity is the ‘invisible’ hand behind many humanitarian crises.”

Citing a New York Times article, the report says 40 million people living in 7 states in the Western U.S. who rely on water from the Colorado River could face severe shortages in coming years.

‘Runaway’ Crisis

In the next 20 years, demand for water is expected to surge more than 50%. “Once we’re on that train, it’s not clear where it stops,” the report quotes Jennifer Pitt, director of the Colorado River program at the National Audubon Society, as saying.

The looming water crisis could also hugely impact agricultural output, including staple crops, meaning people could struggle to find food and beverages in the stores, according to London-based financial giant Barclays.

Worst affected will be those living in the world’s hottest — and poorest — regions, including Africa and South Asia. Already, 1.1 billion people — one in every 7 people on earth — lack reasonable access to drinking water. In Africa, more than a quarter of the entire population spends several hours every day walking miles to get to a water source, the report says.

Drilling for Life

Humanitarian agencies such as Gospel for Asia (GFA World) are drilling thousands of deep-water wells, supplying reliable, clean drinking water for millions in remote places where children often suffer and die from waterborne parasites and diseases like diarrhea, typhoid and cholera.

“This desperate situation is especially acute in Asia, where millions of families get their drinking water from the only source available to them — often a dirty river or stagnant pond,” said Gospel for Asia (GFA World) founder K.P. Yohannan.

The faith-based organization has provided enough wells — called “Jesus Wells” — and simple sand-gravel filters to supply more than 38 million people with safe drinking water.

“Just as Jesus offered people ‘living water,’ we’re striving to do the same as an expression of God’s care for them,” Yohannan said.


About GFA World

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national workers bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In a typical year, this includes thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 1,200 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 260,000 needy families, and teaching to provide hope and encouragement in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry. GFA World has launched programs in Africa, starting with compassion projects in Rwanda. For all the latest news, visit the Press Room at https://gfanews.org/news.


Read more blogs on Human Trafficking, Water Shortage, the Global Water Crisis and GFA World on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

Learn more about how to provide pure, clean water to families and villages through GFA World Jesus Wells and BioSand Water Filters.

Learn more about Gospel for Asia: Facebook | YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | SourceWatch | Integrity | Lawsuit Update | 5 Distinctives | 6 Remarkable Facts | 10 Milestones | Media Room | Water Scarcity | Endorsements | 40th Anniversary | Lawsuit Response | International Offices | Missionary and Child Sponsorship | Transforming Communities through God’s Love

Notable News about Gospel for Asia: FoxNews, ChristianPost, NYPost, MissionsBox


Source: GFA World Digital Media News Room, Earth On Brink of ‘Dire’ Water Shortage, GFA World Warns

May 16, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – GFA World (Gospel for Asia) founded by K.P. Yohannan, has been the model for numerous charities like GFA World Canada, to help the poor and deprived worldwide, issued this second part of a Special Report on Malaria – new vaccine heralds a game-changing development.

Tricking Mosquitoes With … ‘Toxic’ Beetroot Juice?

Malaria is responsible for the deaths of more than 400,000 people worldwide in 2019.In the seemingly never-ending quest to wipe out malaria—responsible in 2019 for the deaths of more than 400,000 people worldwide, roughly equivalent to wiping out the entire population of Miami, Florida—scientists are experimenting continually with new ideas to combat “the enemy” … the pesky mosquito.[17]

Perhaps one of the most unusual ideas involves “toxic” beetroot juice.

Researchers at Sweden’s Stockholm University have been preying on mosquitoes searching for their next tasty blood meal. They’ve shown that it’s possible to mimic a blood feast using beetroot juice laced with a “toxic” plant-based solution that kills mosquitoes but doesn’t harm other species, such as bees.[18]

Until the malaria vaccine usage is widespread, there are still a number of simple but highly effective solutions to combat malaria. One is mosquito bed nets. Another in process, is toxic beetroot, which kills the female carriers.
Beetroot
Beetroot is part of a simple “pink juice” mixture which mimics mosquito’s food drawing in the pest and safely dispatching of it without harming other organisms.

According to an October 2021 report in ScienceDaily, the Swedish team tested four different ingredients in a beetroot juice cocktail. All the mosquitoes feeding on the “fake blood” died within a few hours.[19]

“This mixture, [which] we call ‘pink juice,’ is a harmless … eco-friendly solution, but it is naturally toxic for female mosquitoes,” said Noushin Emami, a professor in the university’s Department of Molecular Biosciences.[20] The Stockholm researchers hope to see their “feeding trap” tested in the field and eventually used alongside other effective mosquito control measures.

“There are a number of … approaches targeting mosquitoes … but I believe that there is a lot of potential in developing very simple but highly effective solutions,” Emami said. “We used beetroot in this study to demonstrate exactly this point.”[21]

Molecular Attraction team. From left: Johan Paleovrachas, Noushin Emami, PhD, Aleksandra Gromnicka, Lech Ignatowicz, PhD.
Molecular Attraction team. From left: Johan Paleovrachas, Co-founder and Chairman, Noushin Emami, PhD, Co-founder and CSO, Aleksandra Gromnicka, Project Manager, Lech Ignatowicz, PhD, Co-founder and CEO. Photo by Molecular Attraction
Mosquito bite
People typically get malaria after being bitten by an infective female Anopheles mosquito.

Facing a Global Emergency

Despite recent breakthroughs and progress, malaria remains one of the biggest threats to children’s lives on the global stage. “Every two minutes, a child dies of malaria,” said UNICEF’s Stefan Swartling Peterson.[22] According to the agency, nearly half of the world’s population is at risk. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says the mosquito is the most deadly creature in the world—killing more people each year than sharks, wolves, lions, crocodiles and snakes combined.[23]

Alarming facts include the following: 8 out of 10 malaria deaths occur in only 15 countries—14 of them in Africa, plus India. Third largest killer of children under age 5, after pneumonia and diarrhea. 9 out of 10 malaria deaths occur in sub-Saharan Africa. Deaths of thousands of women and unborn children every year, are due to Malaria in pregancy.
Background Photo by Rod Waddington, Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Quest to Become Malaria-Free

USAID malaria initiative in Uganda
USAID’s indoor residual spraying activity has protected almost 7 million Ugandans from malaria, and contributed to reducing malaria infection rates in targeted districts by 55 percent.

In a June 30, 2021 news release from the World Health Organization, it was stated that “Globally, 40 countries and territories have been granted a malaria-free certification from WHO—including, most recently, El Salvador (2021), Algeria (2019), Argentina (2019), Paraguay (2018), and Uzbekistan (2018).”[25]

In June 2021—following a 70-year battle against malaria—China joined the coveted list of malaria-free countries. WHO described it as a “notable feat” for the world’s most populous nation.[26]

In the 1940s, China reported 30 million cases of malaria each year.[27] According to a CNN report, during the Vietnam War, more Chinese soldiers died from malaria than bullets in the mosquito-ridden jungles.[28] China is the first country in more than 30 years in the Western Pacific region to rid itself of the disease.[29]

Many nonprofits are on the frontlines, operating health clinics, providing medicine, and distributing lifesaving bed nets in even the most isolated places.

WHO credits China’s success in eradicating malaria to aggressive government action to wipe out mosquito breeding grounds, develop better antimalarial drugs and pioneer preventive measures. In the 1980s, China was one of the first countries to test insecticide-treated bed nets on a large scale—showing that widespread use of bed nets at night could significantly reduce mosquito bites and malaria cases.[30]

China received a malaria free certification by WHO in 2021
China has a long history of malaria, but it has now maintained zero indigenous malaria cases for four years running, down from an estimated 30 million cases and 300,000 deaths per year in the 1940s. This malaria free certification by WHO in 2021 is a significant life-saving achievement for China, showing the potential for real progress in the fight against malaria. Photo by WHO/C.McNab

The Battle On the Frontlines: Mosquito Nets

Science and facts tell part of the story. But the real-life impact of malaria is unfolding right now in the rural villages of sub-Saharan Africa, the teeming cities of Asia and the Amazon rainforests of South America.

Many global nonprofit organizations—including World Vision, Save the Children and GFA World—are on the frontlines, operating health clinics, providing medicine, and distributing lifesaving bed nets in even the most isolated places.

Dr. K.P. Yohannan, GFA Founder
Dr. K.P. Yohannan, Gospel for Asia (GFA) Founder

“Some of their communities are in such deep trouble fighting this disease, our workers were dealing with thousands of cases,” said Gospel for Asia (GFA World) founder K.P. Yohannan. In one malaria-prone area of Asia, workers climbed a mountain on foot to reach a remote, mountaintop community caught in a malaria death cycle, Yohannan said. “The people of this community, extremely isolated … didn’t know how to prevent or treat malaria.”

GFA World national missionaries traversing mountainous terrains to deliver supplies and provisions to villages in need.
Sikkim: Because of mountainous terrain in many parts of India, Gospel for Asia (GFA World) teams often hand carry critical provisions, like mosquito nets, on their backs while climbing mountains to reach the villages in need of supplies.

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) missionaries—driven by the belief that every human life is precious to God—distributed some 200 mosquito bed nets they’d carried up the mountain, as well as malaria medicine, and showed the local people how to protect themselves and halt the deadly wave.

“From the day they brought the medicine and nets, not a single person in that community died of malaria,” Yohannan said. “What does this tell us? In remote, malaria-ridden places across Asia, a mosquito net can change an entire community.”

Motherless daughters received a mosquito net from GFA World gift distribution
West Bengal 1-4-22: These four motherless sisters were very happy to receive a bed net for their family to keep them safe from mosquito bites and other insects. The oldest daughter works to make ends meet, but earns less than 100 rupees a day.

One Less Thing to Fear

Living in an area with high rates of malaria, Bahman and his wife, Salli, were terrified they’d lose their two young daughters to the disease. They knew a mosquito net—costing about $10—would be a potential lifesaver. But they were too poor to afford one.

Increasing their fear, one of their daughters had been paralyzed for three years. If she contracted malaria, would she survive?

That’s when a local Gospel for Asia (GFA) missionary realized the dilemma facing the couple and their neighbors. He took action—and 100 families, including Bahman’s, were given bed nets. “You helped us by providing a piece of mosquito net in our lives, though you never knew us before,” Bahman said. “We are touched with your love.”

GFA WOrld mosquito net distribution
West Bengal 8-17-16: Gospel for Asia (GFA World) national missionary, and helpers, and the local village head, distributed some eight hundred mosquito nets to local villagers from economically poor and underprivileged backgrounds.

Making It Personal Makes a Difference

Father from India received a life-saving mosquit net
For $10, about the cost of morning coffee, you can gift a life-saving mosquito net to an Asian parent, like this father in West Bengal, India, who earns just $3/day, and cannot afford to buy one himself. He can then safeguard his loved ones from harmful mosquito bites that carry vector-borne diseases like malaria. His family will be forever grateful to you.

For many of us born and raised in a malaria-free country, malaria is not something we worry about. It’s a “tropical disease” that’s a long way from affecting our lives. Mosquito bites are an itchy annoyance—that’s all.

This was certainly true for me—until the day I watched malaria’s deadly fever grip my African friends in Uganda. That’s when it became personal for me. They were suffering on the edge of death because they couldn’t afford a basic bed net or antimalarial tablets that cost just a few dollars—things that were readily available, and that I took for granted.

For $10, you can place a life-saving bed net into the hands of a family at risk, a family—like Bahman’s—who will be forever grateful. So far, GFA World’s national missionaries have given out more than 1.3 million mosquito nets. They’d love to hand out millions more.

China has shown us it’s possible to obliterate malaria from the world’s most populated country. And now—with an effective vaccine—the end is finally in sight around the globe. If we all work together, we can see malaria eradicated everywhere.

One shot … one bed net … one child at a time.


What can we do about mosquito-driven scourges? »

One simple way to fight mosquito-borne diseases like malaria, is to consider giving a needy family a simple Mosquito Net. For only $10, Gospel for Asia’s field partners can distribute one of these effective nets to an at-risk family in Asia and provide them with safety from insects during the day and at night.


About GFA World

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national workers bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In a typical year, this includes thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 1,200 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 260,000 needy families, and teaching to provide hope and encouragement in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry. GFA World has launched programs in Africa, starting with compassion projects in Rwanda. For all the latest news, visit the Press Room at https://gfanews.org/news.


Read the rest of this GFA World Special Report: Malaria – It’s Time to Buzz Off! New Vaccine Heralds a Game-Changing Development Part 1

Read more blogs on Christmas Gift Catalog, Malaria, Mosquito Net and GFA World Special Reports on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

Learn more about how generosity can change lives. Through GFA World (Gospel for Asia) and its Christmas Gift Catalog, gifts like pigs, bicycles and sewing machines break the cycle of poverty and show Christ’s love to impoverished families in Asia. One gift can have a far-reaching impact, touching families and rippling out to transform entire communities.

Learn more how to save families from the sickening agony or death from malaria through the gift of Mosquito Nets that offer protection from the sting of an infected mosquito and help to give their owner a restful nights sleep.

Learn more about Gospel for Asia: Facebook | YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | SourceWatch | Integrity | Lawsuit Update | 5 Distinctives | 6 Remarkable Facts | 10 Milestones | Media Room | Water Scarcity | Endorsements | 40th Anniversary | Lawsuit Response | International Offices | Missionary and Child Sponsorship | Transforming Communities through God’s Love

Notable News about Gospel for Asia: FoxNews, ChristianPost, NYPost, MissionsBox


Read what 27 Christian Leaders are affirming about Gospel for Asia.

This Special Report originally appeared on gfa.org.

May 13, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – GFA World (Gospel for Asia) founded by K.P. Yohannan, has been the model for numerous charities like GFA World Canada, to help the poor and deprived worldwide, issued this first part of a Special Report on Malaria – new vaccine heralds a game-changing development.

GFA World (Gospel for Asia) founded by K.P. Yohannan Special Report on Malaria - new vaccine heralds a game-changing development.

It’s the “buzz” millions around the world have been waiting to hear—the news of a mosquito-busting breakthrough decades in the making.

Nurse Janet Wanyama prepares to vaccinate a child against malaria
Nurse Janet Wanyama prepares to vaccinate a child against malaria at the Malava County Hospital, Kakamega, Kenya. Photo by Gavi/2021/White Rhino Films-Lameck Orina

On Oct. 6, 2021, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced that for the first time ever it was recommending the widespread use of a vaccine to protect children at risk of mosquito-borne malaria—one of the biggest killers of children under 5 in sub-Saharan Africa.[1]

In a news universe saturated by COVID-19 recently, this “historic” announcement struggled to make a splash in the mainstream media. But in the ongoing worldwide battle against life-threatening mosquito bites, this vaccine heralds a game-changing development in the fight against malaria.

“This is a historic moment,” said WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. “Using this vaccine on top of existing tools to prevent malaria could save tens of thousands of young lives each year.”[2] Every year, more than 260,000 children under the age of 5 in sub-Saharan Africa die from the effects of malaria, according to WHO.[3]

Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa
Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa. Photo by WHO, Regional Office for Africa

After years of stagnated progress in the fight against the disease in nations such as Ghana, Kenya and Malawi, the breakthrough finally came with a trial vaccine known as RTS, S/AS01—not exactly a memorable name for such a landmark moment.

WHO endorsed widespread use of the four-dose vaccine in areas with “moderate to high P. falciparum malaria transmission,” following a pilot program that’s involved giving the shot to more than 900,000 children since 2019.[4] P. falciparum is also the most prevalent strain in Africa.

“For centuries, malaria has stalked sub-Saharan Africa, causing immense personal suffering,” said Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, WHO’s Africa Regional Director. “We have long hoped for an effective malaria vaccine, and now for the first time ever, we have such a vaccine.”[5]

The breakthrough offers “a glimmer of hope” for the continent that “shoulders the heaviest burden of the disease,” Moeti said.[6]

As of October 2021, more than 2.3 million shots-in-arms had been administered to children in the three-nation pilot program, covering parts of Ghana, Kenya and Malawi. Initial results indicated that more than two-thirds of children who were not sleeping under insecticide-treated bed nets were protected by the vaccine. And the shot—more than 30 years in the making—reduced cases of severe and deadly malaria by 30 percent.[7]

Madagascar malaria initiative campaign by government and USAID partnership
U.S.A. government via the President’s Malaria Initiative and USAID, donated $1.8 million in malaria commodities to the Ministry of Public Health that oversees Madagascar’s annual malaria campaign, including over 2 million rapid diagnostic tests and nearly 2 million doses of treatment for both normal and severe forms of malaria. The supplies were timely because Madagascar had seen a spike in malaria — in the first six months of 2020, over 1 million people there had been diagnosed with malaria and over 600 people died from the disease.

Malaria and Changing Temperatures

The encouraging news, at long last, of an effective vaccine against malaria comes just months after a study by the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine suggested rising worldwide temperatures could cause a dramatic increase in malaria cases.[8]

Sick african child
Malaria and dengue fever may start having an even broader reach worldwide if temperatures continue to rise and extend the disease’s transmission season. Transferal will also happen faster as population density increases causing many more to become ill.

According to a report in The Lancet Planetary Health, the European study estimates 8.4 billion people could be at risk from malaria and dengue fever by the end of the century if rising temperatures were to go unchecked and the world’s population continues to ramp up.[9]

While the year 2100 seems a long way off, the European researchers base their dire predictions on “worst-case scenario” effects of greenhouse gas emissions and population density producing warming temperatures of 3.7 degrees Celsius—about 6.6 degrees Fahrenheit.[10]

Malaria could “gradually increase as a consequence of a warming climate in most tropical regions, especially highland areas,” said the report, citing countries potentially at risk as including Ethiopia, Kenya, South Africa, Somalia, Saudi Arabia, Peru, Mexico and Venezuela.[11]

Encouraging news of an effective vaccine against malaria comes just months after a study suggests rising worldwide temperatures could cause a dramatic increase in malaria cases.

What’s more, researchers also predict changes to weather patterns could cause a “northward shift” of the malaria-epidemic belt into North America, northern and central Europe and northern Asia if temperatures heat up, placing populations in the developed and largely malaria-free nations of the West at risk.[12]

But researchers also acknowledge their study faces limitations because they’re unable to predict advances in vaccines and drugs, or future mutations in malaria parasites.[13]

Malaria ‘Cat and Mouse’

Plasmodium malariae schizont
A 1125X photomicrograph magnification of a Giemsa stained, thin film blood smear, revealing a mature, Plasmodium malariae schizont.

Meanwhile, researchers at Texas Biomedical Research Institute are playing a game of “cat and mouse” with malaria parasites—trying to catch parasites in the act of mutating into different strains.[14]

Scientists at the San Antonio facility have been studying five different malaria parasite species that infect people, probing how certain parasites mutate as they hide in the liver, where they can lie dormant for months—only to strike later with a vengeance.[15] While such studies of new mutations are in the early stages, it’s hoped they’ll eventually help researchers understand how malaria parasites develop resistance to drugs and evade the body’s immune system. It could also pave the way for new malaria treatments in the future.[16]


What can we do about mosquito-driven scourges? »

One simple way to fight mosquito-borne diseases like malaria, is to consider giving a needy family a simple Mosquito Net. For only $10, Gospel for Asia’s field partners can distribute one of these effective nets to an at-risk family in Asia and provide them with safety from insects during the day and at night.


About GFA World

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national workers bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In a typical year, this includes thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 1,200 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 260,000 needy families, and teaching to provide hope and encouragement in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry. GFA World has launched programs in Africa, starting with compassion projects in Rwanda. For all the latest news, visit the Press Room at https://gfanews.org/news.


Read the rest of this GFA World Special Report: Malaria – It’s Time to Buzz Off! New Vaccine Heralds a Game-Changing Development Part 2

Read more blogs on Christmas Gift Catalog, Malaria, Mosquito Net and GFA World Special Reports on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

Learn more about how generosity can change lives. Through GFA World (Gospel for Asia) and its Christmas Gift Catalog, gifts like pigs, bicycles and sewing machines break the cycle of poverty and show Christ’s love to impoverished families in Asia. One gift can have a far-reaching impact, touching families and rippling out to transform entire communities.

Learn more how to save families from the sickening agony or death from malaria through the gift of Mosquito Nets that offer protection from the sting of an infected mosquito and help to give their owner a restful nights sleep.

Learn more about Gospel for Asia: Facebook | YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | SourceWatch | Integrity | Lawsuit Update | 5 Distinctives | 6 Remarkable Facts | 10 Milestones | Media Room | Water Scarcity | Endorsements | 40th Anniversary | Lawsuit Response | International Offices | Missionary and Child Sponsorship | Transforming Communities through God’s Love

Notable News about Gospel for Asia: FoxNews, ChristianPost, NYPost, MissionsBox


Read what 27 Christian Leaders are affirming about Gospel for Asia.

This Special Report originally appeared on gfa.org.

May 9, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – GFA World (Gospel for Asia) founded by K.P. Yohannan, has been the model for numerous charities like GFA World Canada, to help the poor and deprived worldwide, issued this final part of a Special Report on the world’s greatest ‘badge of shame’: Children in Crisis.

Each of their children were suffering and it was all preventable…if only they had clean water. But their nearest source was a contaminated pond and it wasn’t always possible to walk the 3-6 miles to reach safer water, so they drank what was poisoning them. One day though, everything changed.

Kids at Risk of Sexual Exploitation

For millions of children around the world, hunger, thirst and disease are just three of life’s cruel injustices. They are, however, not the vilest or the most horrific.

While an accurate number is difficult to pinpoint, it’s estimated millions of children worldwide—from the slums of Haiti to the sordid child sex industry of Bangkok, Thailand—are victims of sexual exploitation and prostitution.

Millions of kids around the globe are at risk of sexual exploitation
These three children are safe for now in a loving family in the state of Haryana, India, but millions of other kids around the globe ages 10-17 are at risk of sexual exploitation or enforced prostitution.

A report on child trafficking by UNICEF, the U.N. children’s agency, says:

“Sexual activity is often seen as a private matter, making communities reluctant to act and intervene in cases of sexual exploitation. These attitudes make children more vulnerable to sexual exploitation. Myths, such as the belief that HIV/AIDS can be cured through sex with a virgin, technological advances such as the internet [that] has facilitated child pornography, and sex tourism targeting children, all add to their vulnerability.”[32]

UNICEF’s report highlights the following highly disturbing facts:

  • Surveys indicate that 30-35 percent of all sex workers in the Mekong sub-region of Southeast Asia are ages 12-17.
  • Mexico’s social service agency reports more than 16,000 children engage in prostitution, with most of them active in tourist destinations.
  • In Lithuania, 20-50 percent of prostitutes are believed to be children, some as young as 11. Kids from orphanages and children’s homes are especially at-risk, and 10-12 year-olds have been used to make pornographic movies.

“Prostitution is legal in some parts of Asia so the chances of girls being victimized are drastically increased,” said GFA World’s Yohannan. “Many of the poorest families are manipulated into selling their daughters to opportunists who promise a better life for them. But many of these girls are never heard from or seen again. It’s a fate worse than death.”[33]

National Geographic tells the harrowing story of “S” in Asia (name withheld) who left home at the age of 12 with a family acquaintance who promised to find her a job in the city. She was sold to a brothel where she was kept as a sex slave for two years before the police freed her and sent her to a shelter. Six months later, “S” met a woman who promised to take her back home to her family—but sold her to another brothel instead.[34]

A vulnerable young girl
The young and unprotected are easy targets for those who would carry out unspeakable atrocities against them.

The shameful catalog of sexual abuse against unprotected girls is a global disgrace.[35]

According to the Korea Future Initiative (KFI), North Korean girls who escape across the border to China are forced to stay “invisible” and often end up in brothels and the cybersex trade. “Girls as young as 9 are forced to perform graphic sex acts and are sexually assaulted in front of webcams, which are live-streamed to a paying global audience,” says KFI.[36]

In Haiti, many young girls enter into “survival prostitution” because they have no other way to feed themselves.

A church leader in Haiti explained to me: “Let’s say that a girl does not eat for a day. She’s hungry but she will survive. However, the next day, she has nothing to eat. Now, she has gone two days without food. A married man asks her, ‘Can I take you to a restaurant?’ She will not say ‘no.’ The next day, he offers to buy her clothes… a nice dress. Do you think she will say ‘no’? Before long, she is his mistress. She has become dependent on him for food and clothing. This happens all the time in Haiti.

1 in 5 children worldwide is married, according to a startling 2020 report by CBS News.“Many girls practice prostitution in our cities and even in our churches. Their parents encourage them because they are desperate for food, so they encourage their 15-year-old daughters to have sex to bring in money. It’s a desperation trade: ‘You help me, and I will have sex with you.’”

In Haiti, these child sex workers are known as “Degaje.“ In the local Creole language, the term refers to sex workers in survival mode. Their families are known as “Brase,” also a reference to being in a state of survival. Hence, Haitians talk about “Degaje” from “Brase” families.

In nations around the globe, poverty also leads to child marriages, with men frequently marrying girls under the age of 13. According to a report by Gospel for Asia (GFA World), there are as many as 650 million “child brides” in the world today, including adult women who married in childhood.[37]In 2020, a startling report by CBS News stated that one in every five children in the world is married.[38]

“Globally, millions of girls—a number so vast as to defy comprehension—are trapped in a web of exploitation,” said Yohannan. “Girls living in areas of political instability, conflict, or oppression are especially vulnerable to forced marriage and sex slavery.”

In 2014, the kidnapping of 200 schoolgirls in Nigeria by Boko Haram terrorists grabbed the news headlines, but globally the ongoing, rampant abuse of girls continues largely under the radar:

  • In Bangladesh, a survey of 375 sex workers revealed nearly half of them were child brides, married as young as 11, and trafficked into prostitution.
  • In China, sex-selective abortions resulted in a national shortage of women, fueling demand for child brides and sex workers.[39]
  • In the U.S., more than 200,000 minors were married between 2000 and 2015. Most were girls and more than 80 percent were married to an adult, CBS News reported.[40]
Girls trying to survive in the slums
Maharashtra, India – February 2018: Life is anything but simple for these girls who live in one of the many slums in their state. Survival here is often dependent on scavenging and selling what you can.
Children with their mother collects stones to help earn a little money for their family
West Bengal, India – August 2020: COVID cost their father his job which made his drinking problem worse. Their mother was forced to Delhi to earn money, leaving these three siblings alone and abandoned. Without alternatives, these children at risk of starvation, had to visit the river each day to break up stones to sell to somehow get something to eat.
Little girl selling vegetables in the weekly market
Maghalaya, India – October 2021: This little girl runs her family’s stall to sell various items in the weekly market. Like her, many children have to work to help their family make ends meet. But the practice can hinder a child’s education, especially if they drop out of the school for ongoing work at home.

Children at Risk of Slavery

In addition to trafficking for sex and forced marriage, children worldwide are also highly vulnerable to labor exploitation and modern-day slavery.

Millions of children in Asia, like this young boy, are involved in child labor
Millions of children in Asia are involved in child labor. Some children are forced into it, while others have to drop out of school so they can work to help their struggling families.

Around the world, 152 million children as young as five are engaged in some form of child labor. More than 4 million children work in factories, sweatshops, brick-making kilns, hazardous mining operations, rice fields, domestic servitude and other exploitive, forced labor.[41]

In Southeast Asia, 13-year-old Min Min searches for precious stones at a quarry. In 2020, at least 160 people were killed by a mudslide at a jade mine in the region where he lives. “We risk our lives for these stones,” Min Min said. “A man died last night … I saw it with my own eyes.”[42]

Because of the dire economic situation in Haiti, many young children are turned out of their homes by parents who can’t afford to feed them. Often, these children—some younger than 10 years old—enter into domestic servitude, a form of child slavery, with another family.

Facing neglect and physical abuse, these children are known as “rest avek,” translated “stay with,” and are treated essentially as slaves, expected to rise early each day to do the most menial chores.

Real-life Cinderellas

These real-life Cinderellas don’t have the opportunity to attend school, so they have virtually no chance of escaping their situation.

Bhil boy works in the brick making factory alongside other adults and children.
Bhil boy works in the brick making factory alongside other adults and children.

“Haitians dream of escape,” one Haitian man in the capital Port-au-Prince told me. “If you look at Haitian paintings, many of them depict the ocean. The ocean represents escape… liberty. For Haitians, the outside world is paradise; Haiti is hell.”

But for Haiti’s “rest avek” children and millions more trapped in exploitive labor around the world, there is no escape.

In Asia, nine-year-old Lakshmi worked in a factory as a cigarette roller. But it’s her 10-year-old sister she’s most worried about.

“Every morning at 7 a.m. she goes to the bonded labor man, and every night at 9 p.m. she comes home,” Lakshmi said. “He treats her badly. He hits her if he thinks she’s working slowly, or, if she talks to the other children, he yells at her. He comes looking for her if she’s sick and can’t go to work.”

“I don’t care about school or playing. I don’t care about any of that. All I want is to bring my sister home. For 600 rupees [about $8] I can bring her homethat is our only chance to get her back. We don’t have 600 rupees … we will never have 600 rupees.”[43]

A better life seems like a far-fetched dream to children like Lakshmi and her sister in Asia. At the root of their despair is grinding poverty.

But there is hope.

More than 138,000 children received food, medical care, and an education since GFA World’s Child Sponsorship Program began in 2004.GFA World’s Child Sponsorship Program opens the door to a life of opportunity for thousands of children whose lives teeter on the brink of hopelessness, exploitation and suffering. Through its community development approach, Gospel for Asia (GFA World) shows children, their families and their communities the love of Christ by meeting practical needs.

Working with community leaders, solutions like basic health care, food, clean water and educational and community service opportunities help break the cycle of generational poverty.

In the next decade, Yohannan says, he wants to see 500,000 at-risk children in some of the world’s most desperate places enrolled in the program—and his organization invites people to sponsor a child, or more than one child, to help set them free from the curse of poverty and its childhood-ravaging effects.

Children at risk living on the street in Asia
God loves each child at risk, each kid in crisis, living on the street in Asia and Africa. He sees their needs and will not ignore their cries for help. Nor will we. Through GFA World’s child sponsorship program, and your support, children are getting their needs met, while finding out that God cares for them.

Redeeming Children in Crisis

Impoverished children from Karnataka, India
Two young impoverished children in Karnataka, India convey the wonderful beauty found in every child, no matter their station in life.

Our world bears a great “badge of shame” for its appalling neglect of and cruel injustice toward children in every nation, on every continent. But there’s an opportunity for redemption—and each of us can do our part.

In Kampala’s Kisenyi slum, one lonely street boy about 10 years old caught my attention as he sat in the dirt, wearing only torn rags. His leg was badly injured, split open, and flies had gathered on the gaping wound. He was inhaling fuel from a plastic bottle to dull the pain. As I crouched beside him, he told me he’d been run over by a car. The driver hadn’t bothered to stop. Maybe God put me on this earth for this very moment? It was, perhaps, the first time someone had actually cared about this boy, the first time he’d experienced God’s love through another human being. It was an honor to clean and bandage his wound. At that moment, God broke my heart for the suffering children of this world. But He did more than that—He showed me that every child reveals His beauty, even when they’re dressed in filthy rags and lying in the gutter.

As Mother Teresa is quoted as saying:

Mother Teresa holding a child
Mother Teresa

Photo by Wikimedia

The child is the beauty of God present in the world, that greatest gift to a family.[44]


Give to Help Support Children at Risk & Kids in Crisis »

If this special report has touched your heart and you would like to make a real difference in the lives of children in crisis around the world, and bring hope to kids at risk of violence, impoverishment, or child labor, then make a generous one time or monthly gift to help kids in need in Asia or Africa.


About GFA World

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national workers bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In GFA World’s latest yearly report, this included thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 1,200 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 260,000 needy families, and teaching providing hope and encouragement available in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry. GFA World has launched programs in Africa, starting with compassion projects in Rwanda. For all the latest news, visit our Press Room at https://gfanews.org/news.


Read the rest of Gospel for Asia’s Special Report: Children in Crisis — World’s Greatest ‘Badge of Shame’  Part 1, Part 2

Read more blogs on Human Trafficking, Child LaborAbandoned Children and GFA World on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

Learn more about the GFA World Bridge of Hope program and how you can make an incredible difference in the lives of children, bringing hope to their lives and their families, transforming communities.

Learn how to provide a chance for children without sponsors. When you give to help unsponsored children, you help supplement the lack of resources when children in Asia don’t have the sponsors they need to stay in a Bridge of Hope center.

Learn more about Gospel for Asia: Facebook | YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | SourceWatch | Integrity | Lawsuit Update | 5 Distinctives | 6 Remarkable Facts | 10 Milestones | Media Room | Poverty Solution – Farm Animals | Endorsements | 40th Anniversary | Lawsuit Response | International Offices | Missionary and Child Sponsorship | Transforming Communities through God’s Love

Notable News about Gospel for Asia: FoxNews, ChristianPost, NYPost, MissionsBox


Read what 25 Christian Leaders are affirming about Gospel for Asia.

This Special Report originally appeared on gfa.org.

May 4, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – GFA World (Gospel for Asia) founded by K.P. Yohannan, which inspired numerous charities like GFA World Canada, to assist the poor and deprived worldwide, issued this 2nd part of a Special Report on the world’s greatest ‘badge of shame’: Children in Crisis.

Street children resting outdoors exposed to danger and hunger
Without much to call their own, these two boys hold tightly to each other. The streets are a dangerous place for anyone to live, but even more so for vulnerable, and often exploited children.

Child Sacrifice: Boy’s Head ‘Sold by Father For $2,000’

Moses' grave site.
15-year-old Moses went out to buy potatoes and never returned home. His heartsick parents found his body the following week. He is laid to rest here, the cruel victim of child sacrifice and leaves behind not only parents, but his three-year-old sister. This community in Uganda now has a unique alert system that has already rescued two children from a similarly awful fate. ©2014 World Vision/photo by Jon Warren

Other street boys, Kandwanaho told me, fall victim to Uganda’s sinister underworld of child sacrifice. With its roots in witchcraft, child sacrifice is still practiced among both the poor and the rich. Wealthy businessmen abduct a young street boy with few physical blemishes, have him beheaded and then bury the boy’s head under the foundation of a new building “to bring them luck” with their new money-making venture, Kandwanaho said.

A report by ABC Newstells the story of a young mother who found the headless body of her 17-month-old son in a shallow grave in a banana plantation in her rural village near the Congo border. “I pulled my son’s body out of the soil,” she said. “I realized he had no head.” The child’s killer turned out to be his own father, who was given $2,000 by a rich businessman in return for the boy’s head.[16]

Atrocities against street children are not confined to any single country. In Brazil, news reports tell of organized “death squads” that deliberately seek out and murder street children viewed as nothing more than garbage littering the streets.[17]

Kandwanaho showed me where his friends sometimes sleep inside giant, used tractor tires, piled up in a yard. One night, they were swept up in a police “clean-up” operation and transported to a children’s detention center outside Kampala. Every year, hundreds of street kids end up in “remand” centers, juvenile prisons, where they can be detained for months or even years without a court hearing. Their crime? Often, it’s just living or begging on the streets and being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Sixty Feet, a nonprofit organization, helps bring smiles back to marginalized and forgotten children.
Sixty Feet serves in the midst of pain and hurt to help bring smiles back to the children most of their society has written off or forgotten. Photo by Sixty Feet

Nonprofit organizations such as Sixty Feet seek to help children in the prison facilities. Their vision is to “provide a Gospel-centered continuum of care for critically vulnerable children that includes minimizing contact with the law, providing for critical needs, and supporting long-term restoration.”[18]

In Uganda, many street kids are from the northern Karamojong tribe.[19] They’ve fled the underdeveloped, famine-prone region to come to the capital, where they live in crowded slums, such as the Katwe slum featured in the Disney movie Queen of Katwe, and beg at the intersections. These beautiful children, especially the girls, are extremely vulnerable to sexual predators.

Every month, scores of Karamojong children and families arrive in Kampala, putting more pressure on the slums and increasing the number of kids competing for handouts.

Kids as young as 3 wander along the streets, their hands outstretched, narrowly avoiding the perilous open drainage ditches. If they collect a few thousand Ugandan shillings, maybe 50 cents or a dollar, it goes straight to their parent or someone posing as a parent. Mostly, though, they’re ignored by passers-by and motorists, many of whom believe they’re simply feeding the problem and incentivizing begging if they give a handout.

This exodus of children from poorer, rural areas to the cities in search of food and work is not unique to Uganda. It’s a global phenomenon in poor, underdeveloped countries across Africa, Latin America and Asia.
Street children begging on the streets of South Asia
Small fingers reach through the jeep’s open window. These children shift through the busy traffic in Maharashtra risking life and limb in hopes a few rupees will be slipped their way.

Children at Risk of Starvation

Children in poverty from Haiti walks by mud cakes drying in the sun
Haitian children walk by ‘mud cakes’ drying in the sun. The cakes, made of dirt, salt and oil, make a cheap food to stave off hunger. At 2 cents each, they’re the only affordable food option for thousands of Cite Soleil kids at risk and other impoverished residents. Photo by Crossroads Foundation, Flickr

When crops fail due to drought or other calamity, or work opportunities dry up, children and their parents often face a stark choice: move… or starve.

Driven by the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of young children around the world suffering acute malnutrition, a polite term for starvation, was expected to skyrocket by 20 percent in 2020, according to a report by the U.N.[20] That’s an additional 10 million starving children worldwide. “Children living on the streets are particularly at risk,” the report says.

In Haiti, the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere, I’ve watched children eat “mud cakes,” sun-dried cakes made from dirt mixed with salt, water and a little margarine.[21] Mud cakes are a symbol of the despair children face in this Caribbean island nation—a sense of hopelessness that continues into adulthood.

“Ask a Haitian, ‘what do you think you’ll be doing in five years?’ and he will laugh,” a Haitian doctor told me. “Our people do not think about tomorrow; we do not plan for the future. We live from day to day. We are a people in survival mode.”

Around the world, humanitarian agencies such as GFA World (Gospel for Asia) have increased efforts to feed the most vulnerable children and their families during the pandemic as millions of day laborers have been laid off from jobs or unable to work because of lockdowns.

The Texas-based agency has distributed food to tens of thousands of families on the edge of starvation in Asia and Africa, filling a critical gap for parents facing the near-impossible task of feeding their children amid total loss of income and with no safety net to fall back on. “The situation in our village is terrible,” one parent told Gospel for Asia (GFA World). “We don’t have any work and we’re unable to provide food.”

Child hunger is also growing in rich nations, such as the U.S., where more than 11 million children live in “food insecure” homes and don’t have enough to eat, according to the U.S. Government.[22] A staggering 18 million children in the U.S. could go hungry in 2021 because of the pandemic’s economic impact, according to the No Kid Hungry campaign.[23] In the U.K., 1.8 million school-age children—one in every five kids—is at risk of hunger.[24]

These children and their family struggle with hunger due to poverty
Uttar Pradesh: Most of the families in this neighborhood live in small houses in the surrounding fields, and typically struggle to make ends meet financially. Parents often earn 50-60 rupees per day as manual laborers, meaning that the family goes hungry, including their children, like these young ones shown here.

Thirsty? How About a Cup of Feces-contaminated Water?

Small boy collecting unclean water from an open water source
Sinduhli, Nepal, March 2021: As the water levels underground start shrinking, people collect water from small puddles in the forest for drinking. This small boy was asked by his parents, who were working in the fields, to fetch water for drinking from a puddle in the hills. But the water collected from these open puddles can be full of germs and bacteria, as other animals and birds use them too, often causing fatal illnesses.

Hunger is dreadful, but for millions of children, the most immediate threat to their health and survival is the lack of safe drinking water. A staggering 2 billion people, mostly in Africa and Asia, get their drinking water from feces-contaminated ponds and watering holes, leading to often-fatal diseases such as cholera and dysentery. Children under the age of 5 are the most at-risk.[25] The World Health Organization (WHO) says nearly one in every three people in the world doesn’t have access to safe drinking water,[26] and the U.N. predicts that by the year 2050 up to 5.7 billion people worldwide could be affected by water shortages.[27] Drinking contaminated water can lead to many deadly diseases, such as typhoid, hepatitis A, and diarrhea. Globally, diarrhea kills almost 2,200 children every day, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).[28]

Organizations like World Vision and Gospel for Asia (GFA World) have made clean drinking water a top priority.

More than 38 million people have received safe, pure drinking water through GFA World’s clean water initiatives.GFA World drills about 4,000 new community wells called “Jesus Wells” every year, providing safe drinking water for entire villages. Over the past two decades, the organization has drilled more than 30,000 wells and distributed more than 58,000 BioSand water filters that remove 98 percent of water impurities.[29]

The organization’s Jesus Wells supply safe drinking water to approximately 37.5 million people across Asia—roughly equivalent to the entire population of California.

Dr. K.P. Yohannan, GFA Founder
Dr. K.P. Yohannan, GFA Founder

“We offer clean, life-giving water to all people,” says Gospel for Asia (GFA World) founder, K.P. Yohannan (Metropolitan Yohan). “The Lord has used our efforts to bring clean water to the suffering. They receive healthy, life-sustaining support. This gift of free water is one more way we are able to demonstrate the love of Jesus for those in need.”

Jesus Wells are deep wells, drilled in remote villages in Asia where girls often have to trek miles on foot every day to the nearest watering hole or pond to fetch water, putting themselves at risk of sexual assault and even tiger attacks.

“Our family members were suffering from diarrhea and other [waterborne] diseases,” says Arnab, father of three girls and a boy, describing the difference a Jesus Well has made in his village. “Our children who were sick are healthy now.”


Give to Help Support Children at Risk & Kids in Crisis »

If this special report has touched your heart and you would like to make a real difference in the lives of children in crisis around the world, and bring hope to kids at risk of violence, impoverishment, or child labor, then make a generous one time or monthly gift to help kids in need in Asia or Africa.


About GFA World

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national workers bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In GFA World’s latest yearly report, this included thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 1,200 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 260,000 needy families, and teaching providing hope and encouragement available in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry. GFA World has launched programs in Africa, starting with compassion projects in Rwanda. For all the latest news, visit our Press Room at https://gfanews.org/news.


Read the rest of Gospel for Asia’s Special Report: Children in Crisis — World’s Greatest ‘Badge of Shame’  Part 1, Part 3

Read more blogs on Human Trafficking, Child LaborAbandoned Children and GFA World on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

Learn more about the GFA World Bridge of Hope program and how you can make an incredible difference in the lives of children, bringing hope to their lives and their families, transforming communities.

Learn how to provide a chance for children without sponsors. When you give to help unsponsored children, you help supplement the lack of resources when children in Asia don’t have the sponsors they need to stay in a Bridge of Hope center.

Learn more about Gospel for Asia: Facebook | YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | SourceWatch | Integrity | Lawsuit Update | 5 Distinctives | 6 Remarkable Facts | 10 Milestones | Media Room | Poverty Solution – Farm Animals | Endorsements | 40th Anniversary | Lawsuit Response | International Offices | Missionary and Child Sponsorship | Transforming Communities through God’s Love

Notable News about Gospel for Asia: FoxNews, ChristianPost, NYPost, MissionsBox


Read what 25 Christian Leaders are affirming about Gospel for Asia.

This Special Report originally appeared on gfa.org.

May 2, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – GFA World (Gospel for Asia) founded by K.P. Yohannan, whose heart to love and help the poor has inspired numerous charities like GFA World Canada, to serve the deprived and downcast worldwide, issued this first part of a Special Report on the world’s greatest ‘badge of shame’: Children in Crisis.

Children are in crisis right on our doorstep, in our own neighborhoods, wherever we live in the world. And the problem is growing worse.

A shocking U.S. Border Patrol video showed human smugglers dropping two unaccompanied children—sisters ages 3 and 5 from Ecuador—over a 14-foot section of the border fence in the New Mexico desert.[1] The smugglers ran off, leaving the young girls alone and stranded.

Migrant children and their desperate parents enter the U.S. illegally
Migrant children and their desperate parents enter the U.S. illegally on June 15, 2019 by crossing the Rio Grande in rubber boats near Los Ebanos, Texas. Photo by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Flickr

Another young mother from Central America thought she was on the cusp of giving her 9-year-old daughter a better life in the United States. They’d traveled a long, perilous journey and had just one more hurdle to cross: the Rio Grande River separating Mexico from Texas. Tragically, it was a step too far. The little girl apparently drowned before reaching the other side, NBC News reported.[2]

Desperate to escape extreme poverty and surging gang violence in their native countries, thousands of migrant children from Latin America continue to flock to the U.S. southern border, with or without their parents. The journey is fraught with dangers that include becoming prey for human traffickers and ruthless drug cartels en route.[3] Every day in Spring 2021, U.S. border officials were detaining more than 600 unaccompanied migrant children trying to cross the U.S.-Mexico border, with many children risking their lives to do so.[4] According to a CNN report in April 2021, there were more than 20,000 unaccompanied migrant children in the custody of U.S. officials at that time.[5]

The plight and peril of migrant children seeking refuge in the U.S. is a stark reminder that “children in crisis” are not restricted to far-away countries.

Children are in crisis right on our doorstep, in our own neighborhoods, wherever we live in the world. And the problem is growing worse. Until we take steps to protect and prioritize children, their neglect will be a shameful legacy for the nations of our world.
SANTA TERESA, N.M. – U.S. Border Patrol Agents responded to a potentially life-threatening situation involving two female tender-aged toddlers mistreated and abandoned by human smugglers just west of Mt. Cristo Rey. Camera technology observed a smuggler dropping two young kids from the top of the 14-foot-high border barrier, and then immediately fleeing the area after abandoning the helpless little girls on the north side of the international boundary line around March 30, 2021. Video by U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Public Affairs – Visual Communications Division, dvidshub.net

The sight is too much to bear for many Western visitors: A frantic teenage mother, with a newborn strapped to her back, looking for a handout to feed herself and keep her tiny baby alive.

1.2 billion children worldwide are considered “at risk,” vulnerable to a host of calamities, abuse, hunger and diseases.But this real-life scene often isn’t what it appears to be. The baby is not hers. She has actually rented the newborn from its mother or guardian so that her pleas for help solicit greater sympathy from passersby.

Renting out “babies-to-beg” is a common practice in Kampala, Uganda’s capital, where hundreds of children and teenagers from outlying areas—some with parents, many without—descend on the city in the hopes of scraping together money for food. Every day the ritual is the same: hustle, beg, scavenge or steal to survive.

If she’s fortunate, this desperate teenage girl, who is extremely vulnerable to sexual exploitation and prostitution, will solicit enough sympathy to purchase a Rolex. Not the luxury wristwatch Rolex you and I might think of, but an egg-filled chapatti, similar to a burrito, that’s served on nearly every street corner.

Her plight and the fate of the baby she carries on her back are intertwined. Both face a life—likely a very brief life—of perpetual struggle. Both face the threat of abandonment and exploitation. Both girls are continually at risk.

That so many of the world’s children in crisis live without compassionate considerations or safeguards from harm is tantamount to being one the world’s greatest “badges of shame.”

They’re among the estimated 1.2 billion children worldwide who are considered “at risk,” vulnerable to a host of calamities, abuse, hunger and diseases—a toxic combination driven largely by poverty and supercharged by the COVID-19 pandemic.[6]

2021 Global Childhood Report
The 2021 Save the Children Global Childhood Report highlights the toughest places on Earth to be a child, and examines the many factors that rob children of their childhoods and reveals where greater investments are needed to save children from poverty, discrimination and neglect. Photo by Save the Children

According to Save the Children, more than half the world’s children are at risk of poverty, conflict and discrimination against girls.[7] A report by the international charity states that one billion children live in poverty, 240 million live in areas impacted by conflict, and 575 million girls live in countries where discrimination against women and girls is common.

According to Save the Children, Singapore and Slovenia are the best places to be a child, where childhood is most protected.[8] In contrast, Save the Children’s latest Global Childhood Report for 2021, “The Toughest Places To Be A Child,” lists 10 sub-Saharan African nations as the worst places to be a child, “where childhood is most threatened.”[9]

Perhaps surprisingly to some of our readers, the United States is ranked 43rd on the list, behind Russia, Lebanon and Belarus. According to Save the Children’s report, “The United States badly trails many other advanced countries in helping children reach their full potential.” Nonetheless, it ranks among the top 47 countries in the world where relatively few children miss out on their childhoods. The report states, “Countries with similar scores include Bahrain, China, Montenegro, Qatar, Russia, and Slovakia.”[10]

Save the Children says millions of children are being “robbed of the childhoods they deserve.” The agency states that every child has a right to childhood free from fear, safe from violence, protected from abuse and exploitation.

The concept of childhood is defined in the (U.N.) Convention on the Rights of the Child. It represents a shared vision of childhood: healthy children in school and at play, growing strong and confident with the love and encouragement of their family and an extended community of caring adults, gradually taking on the responsibilities of adulthood.[11]

But, the report acknowledges, “This ideal contrasts starkly with the childhood many experience.”[12]

Poor children in Asia walking along the street
These children, just like almost every child in their Haryana slum, set out early each morning in search of garbage in their area. They go around looking for empty plastic bottles, cans, metal, and the like which they then can sell to make a little money to help their families.

Fatherless Kids in Crisis: The ‘Epidemic’ of the Street Children

Around the world, one of the most critical issues affecting children is the surge in the number of kids living on the streets, with no one to protect them or care for them.

Child abandonment is a worldwide crisis. Globally, the “epidemic” of absent fathers, especially, is a major cause of child neglect, often leaving children without a male role model, protector and provider.[13]

Combined with the tribal practice of having multiple wives or concubines, it’s not unusual in some African countries for one man to produce upwards of 30 children.[14] Many of these children grow up never having any relationship with their father, or even knowing who their father is.

An abandoned child in the slums of Kamapala, Uganda
An abandoned child sits alone and neglected next to open sewage in the slums of Kamapala, Uganda in July 2007. Photo by SuSanA Secretariat, Flickr

A report published in 2020 by the African Network for the Prevention and Protection Against Child Abuse and Neglect revealed that child neglect and sexual violence were the biggest issues facing kids growing up in Uganda, one of the lowest-ranking countries.[15] In 2015, a study of street children in the capital city of Kampala revealed that most kids, the large majority being boys, began their life on the streets between the ages of 5 and 10. Seven out of every 10 street kids had come to Kampala by public taxi or bus. They came for a myriad of reasons. Some came to find work and advance their prospects; others were orphans or victims of abuse or neglect who’d fled horrible home environments; and then there were the rebels and runaways. Almost two-thirds of the kids had lived on the streets for at least a year, and many of them had been on the streets for four years or more. More than half of the children reported they’d been physically abused on the streets, and one in every four said they’d suffered sexual abuse.

Many street boys have nothing more than torn rags or sackcloth to wear as clothes and no shoes on their feet, leaving them vulnerable to puncture wounds that quickly become infected, causing their feet to swell grotesquely. Many of them carry a constant companion tucked inside their ragged clothing—a plastic bottle containing fuel, dipped in a filthy piece of cloth. Every few minutes, they inhale the fumes from the bottle, their eyes floating upwards as the cheap “drug” takes effect. It’s the only way they know to dull their senses and take away the pain and suffering in their lives.

Young boy from Africa collecting garbage to help earn some money for his family
Young Kandwanaho (not pictured) fights for survival by working excruciatingly long hours searching for cardboard to sell. Sometimes he has nothing to show for it at the end of the day and, if so, goes hungry. But even on the days when he makes enough to eat, Kandwanaho still has to join the thousands of other children searching the streets of Kampala for somewhere safe to wait out the night.

I once met a boy named Kandwanaho who told me how he searches the alleys of Kampala from daybreak until dusk, collecting discarded cardboard boxes. He visits the alleyways behind the local market stalls and shops, picking up boxes that once held soap, sodas or other goods. Sometimes, he’ll “strike gold” and find a giant TV box. When he’s gathered several boxes, he takes them to the sprawling downtown marketplace, known as Owino Market, and sells the cardboard to the shoe salesmen. They cut the cardboard into sole-size pieces and slide the card into the footwear to help the shoes keep their shape. If Kandwanaho works a 12-hour shift, he makes just over one dollar.

There are times he roams the streets alone all day—dodging taxis, stubbing his bare toes on the cracked roads, inhaling exhaust fumes, hoarse from thirst—and does not find a single box to recycle. On those days, he has nothing to eat unless he dives into the garbage piles to search for a scrap of anything edible among the competing stray dogs and cockroaches.

For Kandwanaho, and many like him, the most troubling time is nightfall as the city’s hectic rhythm subsides. It’s as if everyone is returning home, except for the kids who live on the streets. They have nobody, and nowhere to call home. The dimming light is their cue to find a place in a drainage ditch or empty shack for the night. It’s their hour to poke around the trash piles for any bits of food ditched at the end of the day. As the light fades, their reality mirrors the approaching darkness.

In Uganda, because street boys are viewed by many business owners as thieves and troublemakers, they’re chased off, beaten up and, in extreme cases, even murdered. The reality that human life is cheap and expendable on Kampala’s volatile streets is clearly evident.

As the lowest of the low, street kids are most often the “whipping boys” when anything goes wrong. Kandwanaho told me that a group of his friends were once caught stealing copper pipes they intended to sell. They were kicked in the head, beaten unconscious, soaked in gasoline and set alight, Kandwanaho recalled tearfully. At their burial in a paupers’ graveyard, he and other street boys were the only mourners present.


Give to Help Support Children at Risk & Kids in Crisis »

If this special report has touched your heart and you would like to make a real difference in the lives of children in crisis around the world, and bring hope to kids at risk of violence, impoverishment, or child labor, then make a generous one time or monthly gift to help kids in need in Asia or Africa.


About GFA World

GFA World (www.gfa.org) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national workers bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In GFA World’s latest yearly report, this included thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 1,200 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 260,000 needy families, and teaching providing hope and encouragement available in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry. GFA World has launched programs in Africa, starting with compassion projects in Rwanda. For all the latest news, visit our Press Room at https://gfanews.org/news.


Read the rest of Gospel for Asia’s Special Report: Children in Crisis — World’s Greatest ‘Badge of Shame’  Part 2, Part 3

Read more blogs on Human Trafficking, Child Labor, Abandoned Children and GFA World on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

Learn more about the GFA World Bridge of Hope program and how you can make an incredible difference in the lives of children, bringing hope to their lives and their families, transforming communities.

Learn how to provide a chance for children without sponsors. When you give to help unsponsored children, you help supplement the lack of resources when children in Asia don’t have the sponsors they need to stay in a Bridge of Hope center.

Learn more about Gospel for Asia: Facebook | YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | SourceWatch | Integrity | Lawsuit Update | 5 Distinctives | 6 Remarkable Facts | 10 Milestones | Media Room | Poverty Solution – Farm Animals | Endorsements | 40th Anniversary | Lawsuit Response | International Offices | Missionary and Child Sponsorship | Transforming Communities through God’s Love

Notable News about Gospel for Asia: FoxNews, ChristianPost, NYPost, MissionsBox


Read what 25 Christian Leaders are affirming about Gospel for Asia.

This Special Report originally appeared on gfa.org.

April 11, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – Gospel for Asia (GFA World and affiliates like Gospel for Asia Canada) founded by KP Yohannan, issued this 2nd part of a Special Report update on winning the ancient conflict against the mosquito and vector-borne diseases.

Receiving the gift of Mosquito Nets
National World Mosquito Day commemorates the discovery in 1897 by British doctor Sir Richard Ross that mosquitoes transmit malaria. Gospel for Asia (GFA World) workers hold a variety of events to distribute mosquito nets to guard against insect-borne diseases, including yellow fever, malaria, dengue and zika. These bednet recipients in South Asia smile with appreciation as they can now sleep without discomfort or fear of mosquito bites at night.

Other Means of Mosquito Warfare, Against Vector-borne Diseases

Local and global management of mosquito-borne viruses, many without a vaccine to prevent or a cure to stop the progression of disease, must rely on preventive as well as palliative measures.

A woman puts up a mosquito bednet.
United Republic of Tanzania: A woman puts up a mosquito bednet to safeguard her family at night from mosquito bites. Photo by WHO / S. Hollyman

First, there are protective measures individuals can practice while traveling to or living in mosquito-compromised territories. For instance, local home-dwellers can start by emptying any containers filled with water that are lying around the yard, house or apartment, or in alleys or garbage-collection centers. Tip over that plastic swimming pool and fill it again when needed. Dump any bowls outside that pets feed from. Some out-of-door containers can have holes punched in their bases so that water drains. Clean rain gutters so they don’t become clogged with leaves or debris, which inhibits rainwater from draining and leaves it to pool for days. These practices prevent mosquitoes from breeding in standing water.

Many of these abatement methods are a matter of paying attention and using common sense regarding standing-water sources. For instance, keep grass mowed, trim back bushes and rake up fallen leaves. These are all places where mosquitoes like to hide and breed. Some recommend that any low-lying depressions in a yard should be filled since they will hold water after lawn irrigation or rain. Swimming pools, of course, need to be kept clean and chlorinated. Stocking any small ponds with fish can deter mosquitoes, as fish eat mosquito larvae. As a last resort, for swarms of mosquitoes, spray insecticides.

This, of course, raises its own problems, since most foggers or sprays carry warnings in bold language on their labels. The possibility of unintentional user-poisoning from these highly lethal compounds is evidenced by the cautionary statements on them. For personal protection, a variety of DEET-free (diethyltoluamide) organic repellants are on the market. Many are safe to use around children. In our modern, chemical-wary society, various natural approaches to combating mosquito hoards are recommended, including growing plants that repel mosquitoes. The smell of marigolds, lavender, sage, rosemary and lemon Thai grass make them ideal candidates. A sprig of fresh rosemary placed in water for a few minutes and then placed on a hot grill is recommended as a natural repellant. In addition, pots of basil, bee-balm, catnip or citronella placed in patio or outside seating areas help reduce mosquito colonies.

For travelers, or people living in high at-risk areas like South Asia, a series of personal techniques can be utilized to combat the potential for mosquito bites. These include the following:

Vaccine

Get vaccinated for diseases like yellow fever and Japanese encephalitis. For all other mosquito-borne diseases, which do not have vaccines or medicines, the key strategy is to prevent mosquito bites.

Long Sleeved clothes and pants

Cover up with long-sleeved clothes and pants when you’re out and about, especially at dusk or night when you have the greatest risk, and avoid bright clothing.

Mosquito Coil

Burn mosquito coils under your dinner table while sitting or eating outside.

Insect Repellent

Whenever possible, use insect repellant that’s approved as safe and effective.

Window or door screens

Use window or door screens to keep mosquitoes out of your house.

Sleep under a mosquito net at night.

Photo by WHO/HTM/GVCR/2017.01 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO)

Since so many of South Asia’s poorest families cannot afford insect repellant, window screens or long-sleeved clothes, it becomes essential for non-profits like Gospel for Asia (GFA World) to provide the mosquito nets that will at least keep them safe at night.

Bednets distribution
Bednets only have to be changed once every 3-5 years. Here a fresh supply of mosquito nets is distributed to residents in Patang village, Cambodia. Photo by WHO / S. Hollyman

A Childhood Memory of the “Big Ditch”

Long ago, as a schoolgirl, I was assigned to read a book titled Mosquitoes in the Big Ditch. This is the historical account, in children’s literature, of the opening of the Panama Canal, which finally took place after great failure and much loss of life.

Ship passing through the new Agua Clara Locks, Panama Canal.
Ship passing through the new Agua Clara Locks, Panama Canal. Photo by Wikimedia (CC BY-SA 4.0)

The Panama Canal cuts across the isthmus that joins Panama to Costa Rica at its north and to Colombia at its south. Before its engineering, ships needed to traverse around the southern coastline of South America, a lengthy journey by anyone’s measurement. The French had attempted to cut through this land mass and engineer the massive trench that would allow ships to cut their sailing route from east to west (or vice-versa) by thousands of miles. However, due to epidemics of malaria and primarily yellow fever, the French finally withdrew, and after two decades of hard labor and $287 million of investment, the canal project was terminated in 1889.

At this point, the United States bought the development rights to the Canal from the now-bankrupt French for a fraction of the cost. In the history of entomological transmission, the Americans were to succeed where many had failed because a handful of scientists proved yellow fever was caused through the transmission of the Aedes aegypti mosquito. Before this discovery, the high incidence of infection was attributed to bad water, foul air and disastrous medical-care decisions that allowed the disease to spread.

William C. Gorgas
William C. Gorgas Photo by Wikimedia

U.S. Army physician Major Walter Reed finally demonstrated unequivocally that the vector for yellow fever was the Aedes aegypti. A newly-emerged mosquito was allowed to feed on a suffering patient and then bite volunteer coworkers. As predicted, they succumbed to yellow fever several days later. Mercifully, they recovered from the successful experiment.

In 1904, U.S. Chief Sanitary Officer Dr. William Gorgas took on the task of eradicating yellow-fever-carrying mosquitoes from the 500 square miles of jungle canal-zone. Some 4,000 workers, thousands of gallons of sprayed insecticide, 120 tons of pyrethrum insecticide powder, 300 tons of sulphur and 600,000 gallons of oil later, the task was done.

It was to be the first of many thousands of such efforts, large and small, that would be conducted down through the decades since mosquitoes were defeated in the Big Ditch. It is a war, unfortunately, that needs to be won and won and won.

And while mosquitoes were momentarily defeated to construct the Big Ditch, the ancient war between man and mosquito still wages on every day in places like South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. And it takes “getting to know the enemy” to fulfill the task of eradicating vector-borne diseases, and protect people from life-ending mosquito bites.

You can help in this effort today by making a donation to provide mosquito nets to people in South Asia at risk of mosquito bites. Your gift of $50 will provide mosquito nets for five families in Asia, and safeguard them from the life-ending diseases that mosquitoes transmit.

The bump on my hand, in its conglomerate potential, is not so small after all.


Give Mosquito Nets

Learn how to your gift protects families in Asia from vector-borne diseases.


Read the rest of Gospel for Asia’s Special Report: Winning the Ancient Conflict Between Man and Mosquito: Know Your Enemy or Succumb to Vector-borne Diseases Part 1

This Special Report originally appeared on gfa.org.

Learn more by reading this special report from Gospel for Asia: Mosquito-Driven Scourge Touches Even Developed NationsMalaria Alone Claims 400,000 Lives Per Year


Click here, to read more blogs on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

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April 8, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – Gospel for Asia (GFA World and affiliates like Gospel for Asia Canada) founded by KP Yohannan, issued this 1st part of a Special Report update on winning the ancient conflict against the mosquito and vector-borne diseases.

GFA World, founded by KP Yohannan, issued this Special Report on winning the ancient conflict against the mosquito and vector-borne diseases.

It’s small, this little welt on my hand or the bump behind my ear. The welts come and go and are a minor annoyance during the spring, summer and fall when I am gardening or when my husband and I host outside gatherings or when the grandchildren come to play and explore the path through the woods their grandfather cut for them. These seasons are when mosquitoes buzz in the air and wait to strike humans for the blood the females need to nourish their eggs.

Malaria parasite
Feeding on a human arm, this Anopheles albimanus mosquito is a vector of malaria, so mosquito control is critically important for reducing the incidence of malaria. Photo by James Gathany, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

It is a little distraction; I bat away the pesky critter or slap it when it sucks my blood, causing a splat on my own skin. The bump caused by this bite swells and itches, but I’ve learned the more I scratch, the itchier the welt becomes.

When a mosquito bite breaks the skin, my immune system sets off a warning; the mini-wound is instantly flushed with increased blood flow and my white-blood-cell count elevates slightly. This reaction causes the swelling; it is really an allergic reaction. On the micro-scale of things, this physiological response is instantaneous. For most of us, a mosquito bite, or multiple bites, is an annoyance causing us to itch, then scratch, and finally, if the bites continue to annoy, seek some kind of salve to soothe and a repellant to prevent.

In some places in the world, however, a mosquito is no small thing. It can bring on fevers, illnesses, work displacement and even death—causing thousands of families sorrow.

In my original special report for Gospel for Asia titled It Takes Only One Mosquito, I explored the impact of faith based organizations on modern medical approaches. This update explores the ancient and ongoing battle between man and mosquitos which transmit vector-borne diseases.

Children participate in a class on malaria and how to protect themselves
Malawi: Education on malaria prevention can be taught in schools as children participate in a class on malaria and how to protect themselves. Photo by WHO / S. Hollyman

Know Your Enemy or Yield to Vector-borne Diseases

Knowing your enemy is well-known advice attributed to Sun Tzu’s ancient Asian manual The Art of War, which is part of a syllabus for potential military-service candidates. Its recommendation for warriors is certainly appropriate for the equally ancient conflict that exists in many parts of the world between Man and Mosquito. In reality, where I live the welt on my hand may be small and annoying but for whole population sectors around the world, the negative impact of mosquitoes and the diseases they may transmit is overwhelmingly huge.

So let’s take Sun Tzu’s advice and get to know our enemy:

The most common, and most dangerous, are the various species in the Culex, Anopheles and Aedes.

Mosquitoes can live in almost any environment, with the exception of extreme cold. They favor forests, marshes, tall-grass and locales, and ground that is wet at least part of the year. Incredibly, Arctic tundra is a great breeding-place for mosquitoes—the soil that has been frozen all winter thaws in the warming weather, rendering these vast acres huge mosquito incubators. These insects must have water to survive (breeding can occur in as little as one inch of standing water), so areas that border ponds, lakes or puddles are essential to their spread and survival.

Categorized among the group known as “blood-feeding arthropods” which also includes ticks and fleas, mosquitoes are responsible for a wide range of diseases that result in various symptoms such as fevers, rashes, aches and pains, vomiting and death. The World Health Organization classifies such illnesses as “vector-borne diseases,” which are “human illnesses caused by parasites, viruses and bacteria that are transmitted by vectors.”

Vectors can cause numerous diseases in humans
WHO/HTM/GVCR/2017.01 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO)

The WHO’s report on vector-borne diseases
includes these stunning facts:

  • Vector-borne diseases account for more than 17 percent of all infectious diseases, causing more than 700,000 deaths annually.
  • Malaria is a parasitic infection transmitted by Anopheline It causes an estimated 219 million cases globally and results in more than 400,000 deaths every year. Most of the deaths occur in children under the age of 5 years.
  • Dengue is the most prevalent viral infection transmitted by Aedes More than 3.9 billion people in more than 129 countries are at risk of contracting dengue, with an estimated 96 million symptomatic cases and an estimated 40,000 deaths every year.

“Other diseases transmitted by vectors include chikungunya, Zika, yellow fever, West Nile virus, Japanese encephalitis (all transmitted by mosquitoes) and tick-borne encephalitis (transmitted by ticks).”

Other Odd Facts in the War on Mosquitoes

Mosquito-borne diseases
Zika virus, which has caused thousands of infants in Brazil alone to be born with abnormally small heads and neurological problems, joins a suite of emerging and long-established diseases transmitted throughout the world by mosquitoes. The actual disease-causing agents are the viruses, bacteria or parasites that the mosquitoes pick up when they feed on the blood of an infected person or animal. Photo by UC Davis

These vectors can transmit infectious pathogens between humans, or from animal to humans. Mosquitoes, as mentioned, are blood-sucking insects; when doing so, they can ingest pathogens from a host and transfer it to another host once that pathogen begins to replicate. Often, once a vector becomes infected, it is capable of transmitting the pathogen for the rest of its life, becoming a flying, one-insect, disease-delivery machine.

According to the WHO, 700,000 people die each year from malaria, dengue, Japanese encephalitis and other vector-borne diseases.

“The burden of these diseases is highest in tropical and subtropical areas, and they disproportionately affect the poorest populations,” writes the WHO.

Risk, Burden, Mortality of Vector Borne Diseases
Photo by WHO/HTM/GVCR/2017.01 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO)

“Since 2014, major outbreaks of dengue, malaria, chikungunya, yellow fever and Zika have afflicted populations, claimed lives, and overwhelmed health systems in many other countries. Other [vector-borne] diseases … cause chronic suffering, life-long morbidity, disability and occasional stigmatization.”

Perhaps that little bump growing on my hand after a summer mosquito attack is not such a little thing after all.

Mother and child resting under mosquito net
This woman and her child in Uttar Pradesh, India, can function without fear of insect bites during the day, as well as sleep safely each night, due to the protective mosquito net they received as a Christmas gift from GFA World.

Mosquito Abatement: Part of Caring for the Least of These

Boy riding bicycle carying mosquito nets
Mosquitos are so dangerous because a single bite can transmit malaria or other parasitic diseases. This boy in South Asia is seen riding home with a new mosquito nets that he was given through a Gospel for Asia (GFA World) gift distribution. These nets are simple, cost-effective solutions to keep families safe from malaria-carrying mosquitoes.

In light of what we know now about that enemy, the mosquito, is it any wonder that mosquito-abatement programs sponsored by faith-based organizations like Gospel for Asia (GFA World) are one of the evidences that fulfill this Gospel imperative: “Love your neighbor as yourself”?

I love the story on GFA’s website reporting how Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers distributed some 9,000 mosquito nets to students living in hostels, now away from their families. Two nets were given to each student, one for them to use and one to send back home.

“I am thankful for the mosquito net,” said Marcus, a ninth-grade student. “I am from a poor family, and there is no one to meet my needs.”

On a broader scale, GFA World has delivered nets to thousands of families in need and held awareness training and awareness programs in many affected areas. In Odisha, a state greatly affected by various vector-borne , Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers led mosquito awareness programs and gave nets to 2,050 impoverished families, including people at a district medical hospital. In the tea-growing state of Assam, Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers conducted awareness training about the need for prevention, distributing 2,000 nets to tea-garden employees.

To date, Gospel for Asia (GFA World) has distributed more than 1,300,000 mosquito nets in malaria-prone areas of South Asia to protect people from life-ending vector-borne diseases.

In some places in the world, a mosquito is no small thing. It can bring on fevers, illnesses, work displacement and even death—causing thousands of families sorrow.

The world’s largest grassroots campaign to protect people from malaria is the United Nations Foundation’s Nothing But Nets campaign. Aiming to be the generation that defeats malaria, Nothing But Nets brings together UN partners, advocates and organizations worldwide to raise awareness, funds and voices to protect vulnerable families from malaria, given that every two minutes a child dies from malaria.

Mosquito nets, as part of a general abatement program in many countries of the world, overcome one of the major deterrents to all of the above: the small, seemingly innocuous welt on the hand, behind the ear, on the ankle or calf. A mosquito bite.


Give Mosquito Nets

Learn how to your gift protects families in Asia from vector-borne diseases.


Read the rest of Gospel for Asia’s Special Report: Winning the Ancient Conflict Between Man and Mosquito: Know Your Enemy or Succumb to Vector-borne Diseases — Part 2

This Special Report originally appeared on gfa.org.

Learn more by reading this special report from Gospel for Asia: Mosquito-Driven Scourge Touches Even Developed NationsMalaria Alone Claims 400,000 Lives Per Year


Click here, to read more blogs on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

Learn more about Gospel for Asia: Facebook | YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn | SourceWatch | Integrity | Lawsuit Update | 5 Distinctives | 6 Remarkable Facts | 10 Milestones | Media Room | Scandal of Starvation | Endorsements | 40th Anniversary | Lawsuit Response |

Notable News about Gospel for Asia: FoxNews, ChristianPost, NYPost, MissionsBox

March 24, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – GFA World (Gospel for Asia) founded by K.P. Yohannan, whose heart to love and help the poor has inspired numerous charities like GFA World Canada, to serve the deprived and downcast worldwide, one of America’s largest Christian organizations is on a quest to help re-energize the faith of those ages 18-30, a group vanishing from the church.

Engaging the Vanishing Generation: GFA World Set Apart 2022 event, June 20-26, aims to help young adults bring faith in God back into focus.
ENGAGING THE ‘VANISHING GENERATION’: Gospel for Asia (GFA World) aims to help re-energize the faith of those 18-30, a group vanishing from the church because many of them say God “seems missing.” Organizers anticipate the Set Apart 2022 conference, featuring ministry leaders Metropolitan KP Yohannan, Francis Chan and George Verwer, will attract hundreds of young adults to GFA World’s campus at Wills Point, Texas, June 20-26. Learn more at gfa.org/setapart/.

Nearly two-thirds of 18-29 year olds who grew up in the U.S. going to church have dropped out, according to research. The number of young church dropouts rose to a staggering 64% in 2019.

A 5-year-long study by faith-based research group Barna found almost a third of the young adults described church as “boring,” one-quarter of them said faith is “not relevant,” and 1 in 5 who attended church as a teenager said God “seems missing” from their experience.

Now Gospel for Asia (GFA World), a key player in global evangelical ministry, aims to ignite a new spiritual zeal among Gen Z (late teens and early 20s) and also Millennials, those age 26 and up.

The Texas-based organization is holding its first-ever Set Apart (www.gfa.org/setapart/) retreat June 20-26, with the goal of helping hundreds of young adults discover a deeper calling and trade their smartphones for a time of “listening to God’s voice.” Watch the Set Apart promo video here: https://youtu.be/JPaQSuxNZ7k

“We’ve become addicted to our phones, getting a buzz out of seeing our posts on Facebook and hearing the ‘ding’ when someone responds,” said Bishop Daniel Punnose, vice-president of Gospel for Asia (GFA World) and leader of the young adult conference to be held at GFA World’s campus in Wills Point, 50 miles east of Dallas.

Experiencing Radical Faith

“We want to give young people an experience of the Christianity that has not only sustained the church for 2,000 years, but has turned the world upside down,” Punnose said. ‘To live a life that’s counter to our self-centered culture, this generation needs to see a purpose for their lives that is not centered on themselves, but on Christ.”

Francis Chan –bestselling author of “Crazy Love” – will be one of the speakers at the event, along with George Verwer, founder of Operation Mobilization, and K.P. Yohannan, founder of Gospel for Asia (GFA World).

“There’s such a busyness and craziness to our minds right now,” Chan said. “People need to understand better than ever before how to just be quiet and rest in the Lord, meditate on his word (and) enjoy his presence.”

During Set Apart 2022, young people will learn to listen to God’s voice, meditate on the Bible, and spend time alone in prayer. The experience, Punnose said, promises to bring them closer to God and help them refocus their lives on things that matter. And long beyond the week-long retreat, participants will return home equipped with the tools to stand firm in their faith and live purposely for Christ even in the midst of a world of distraction.

“Most conferences are about going to hear someone talk about God; this retreat is about spending a whole week meeting with God,” Punnose said.

Those 18-30 can go to www.gfa.org/setapart/ for more information and to sign up.


About GFA World

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national workers bring vital assistance and spiritual hope to millions across the world, especially in Asia and Africa, and sharing the love of God. In a typical year, this includes thousands of community development projects that benefit downtrodden families and their children, free medical camps conducted in more than 1,200 villages and remote communities, over 4,800 clean water wells drilled, over 12,000 water filters installed, income-generating Christmas gifts for more than 260,000 needy families, and teaching to provide hope and encouragement in 110 languages in 14 nations through radio ministry. GFA World has launched programs in Africa, starting with compassion projects in Rwanda. For all the latest news, visit the Press Room at https://gfanews.org/news.



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