November 25, 2022

STONEY CREEK, ONTARIO — October 22, 2022 St. Cyprian BEC (https://www.bechurch.ca), mission partner of Gospel for Asia (GFA World, founded by Dr. K.P. Yohannan, has been the model for numerous charities like Gospel for Asia Canada), hosted a free Fall Festival for the community. We gratefully took advantage of one of the last warm weekends of the year for this event. Families and individuals were welcomed to the property we share with Gospel for Asia (GFA World) from one to five in the afternoon. Donations were accepted to support the local Stoney Creek Food Bank.

St. Cyprian Believers Eastern Church, a GFA partner, welcomed the local community for an afternoon of fun to help strengthen relationships
St. Cyprian BEC took advantage of one of the last nice weekends in October to welcome the Stoney Creek community for a free Fall Festival (https://www.bechurch.ca/).

This event featured fall treats made by parishoners, games, face painting, a bouncy castle, and the opportunity to interact with other community members. Dave Coruzzi, a local musician and guitar teacher, also provided live music during the event. Almost 150 people attended the festival.

Stoney Creek is a multi-cultural community, and we were delighted to have families from different backgrounds in attendance. We love being able to share small pieces of our cultural heritage with those from other backgrounds! Sometimes we do so through teaching adults how to play checkers, or playing giant-sized jenga. Or just sharing some of our favourite fall-time snacks and treats like caramel popcorn and chocolate chip cookies.

Around the world, Believer’s Eastern Church parishes seek to meet the needs in their communities. Partnering with Gospel for Asia (GFA World), we have helped organize free medical camps in remote areas. Also, we have been able to provide mosquito nets to many impoverished people in various communities.


About Gospel for Asia – GFA World

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national missionaries 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/.

Media interested in interviews with Gospel for Asia should contact Gregg Wooding at InChrist Communications @ 972-567-7660 or gwooding@inchristcommuications.com


Source: GFA World Digital Media News Room, Enjoying the Fall Season at the Stoney Creek Pumpkin Fest

Learn more about the GFA World national missionary workers who carry a burning desire for people to know the love of God. Through their prayers, dedication and sacrificial love, thousands of men and women have found new life in Christ.

Read more on Humanitarian Services and GFA World Canada on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

October 31, 2022

STONEY CREEK, ONTARIO — On Saturday, October 15, 2022, the Stoney Creek community came together to celebrate the Pumpkin Fest. Families were out together, and many children had the opportunity to show off their amazing costumes. Gospel for Asia (GFA World, founded by Dr. K.P. Yohannan, has been the model for numerous charities like Gospel for Asia Canada) staff built a fall themed arch for attendees to take photos under. We also had free games and balloons and invited people to our Fall Festival, which is being hosted by our mission partner St. Cyprian BEC (https://www.bechurch.ca/cyprian/).

GFA World Canada connected with the local community by participating in this year's Stoney Creek Pumpkin Fest Pumpkin Fest.
Gospel for Asia (GFA World) offered games and free balloons for children and families at the Stoney Creek Pumpkin Fest (https://www.gfa.ca).

Held in downtown Stoney Creek, the Pumpkin Fest attracted many people from the community. We were blessed with good weather as well. Though the forecast was for rain, the sky was sunny all afternoon. However, a stiff wind made certain that we didn’t forget summer is over.

Hundreds of families came by, and we gave away over 190 balloons. Several children also learned how to play checkers with their family. We love connecting with our community, and encourage people to sign up to get news about future community events directly in their inbox. Everyone who signed up to receive these emails was entered into a draw for a free, homemade pie. Also, donations were received for the Stoney Creek food bank.

Community Transformation

In an ever-increasingly digital world, it can be difficult to connect with our neighbors. That is why events like the Pumpkin Fest and the recently concluded Fall Festival are so important to us! By providing a safe and fun forum for community interactions, we are helping to build stronger communities. Strong communities mean more support for people in our neighborhood who face various challenges.

For a woman named Achsa, who lives in an area we serve, her community provided her with the opportunity to provide for her children. And, when she faced abuse in her home, she found support through the outreach of the local church. We seek to be the same light in our community that countless National Missionaries and faithful believers are in theirs. Giving balloons to children may seem simple, but we pray for big things to come from it!


About Gospel for Asia – GFA World

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national missionaries 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/.

Media interested in interviews with Gospel for Asia should contact Gregg Wooding at InChrist Communications @ 972-567-7660 or gwooding@inchristcommuications.com


Source: GFA World Digital Media News Room, Enjoying the Fall Season at the Stoney Creek Pumpkin Fest

Learn more about the GFA World national missionary workers who carry a burning desire for people to know the love of God. Through their prayers, dedication and sacrificial love, thousands of men and women have found new life in Christ.

Read more on Humanitarian Services and GFA World Canada on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

September 28, 2022

STONEY CREEK, ONTARIO — August 13, 2022, Gospel for Asia (GFA World, founded by Dr. K.P. Yohannan, which inspired numerous charities like Gospel for Asia Canada) partner St. Cyprian Believers Eastern Church (BEC) parish hosted a Community Car Wash for the residents of Stoney Creek. A total of 26 vehicles, ranging from motorcycles to mini vans and pickup trucks, were washed. Donations were accepted to help unsponsored children escape the cycle of poverty.

GFA World (Gospel for Asia) partner St. Cyprian Believers Eastern Church parish hosted a Community Car Wash for the residents of Stoney Creek
GFA World’s partner, St. Cyprian Believers Eastern Church holds a car wash for the community and raises funds for unsponsored children in Asia and Africa. (https://www.bechurch.ca/)

20 volunteers came together Saturday morning to wash cars from nine in the morning until one o’clock. The children enjoyed working with the adults, strengthening the parish community while serving the Stoney Creek community.

We served refreshments to those who wished, while their cars were being washed. Parishioners washed the vehicles by hand with warm soapy water and sponges. Also, we gave special attention to the hubcaps, leaving them clean and shining. After the cars were well rinsed, they were dried by hand to leave a spotless finish. Two washing stations were available so that no one had to wait.

The event was a huge success! The donations that were given at the Community Car Wash will help meet the most pressing needs of underdeveloped communities in Asia and Africa. Given the great needs in Asia and Africa, we focus on unserved communities, going where others have not gone.

To learn about St. Cyprian BEC, and how you can participate with us, visit website.


About Gospel for Asia – GFA World

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national missionaries 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/.

Media interested in interviews with Gospel for Asia should contact Gregg Wooding at InChrist Communications @ 972-567-7660 or gwooding@inchristcommuications.com


Source: GFA World Digital Media News Room, St. Cyprian Believers Eastern Church Holds a Community Car Wash

Learn more about the GFA World national missionary workers who carry a burning desire for people to know the love of God. Through their prayers, dedication and sacrificial love, thousands of men and women have found new life in Christ.

Read more on Humanitarian Services and GFA World Canada on Patheos from Gospel for Asia.

February 11, 2022

STONEY CREEK, ONTARIO – GFA World was founded in the US by Dr. K.P. Yohannan in 1979 as a worldwide mission movement dedicated to raising awareness and support for national missionaries serving the needy in Asia and now in Africa. In a recent interview, Dr. K.P. Yohannan said “Our calling as a ministry has always been and will always be to share Christ’s love with people who have never heard. That will never change.” The Gospel for Asia (GFA) community is made up of people from different denominations, backgrounds, and from all walks of life, with one mind and heart: to minister to those in great need with Christ’s love.

GFA World Canada is thankful for all that the Lord has done in the past 37 years and look forward to all that God will do in the years to come
GFA World Canada, located in Stoney Creek, Ontario, celebrates their 37th anniversary of working to see communities transformed by God’s love.

GFA World Comes to Canada

The mission of Gospel for Asia (GFA) first began in Canada in the fall of 1982, when GFA was invited by Last Days Ministries to represent the national missionary movement at the Keith Green Memorial Concert tour. The concerts were a call to mission, in honour of the passion of musician Keith Green, who had died earlier that year in a plane crash. The concert tour included 17 Canadian cities, where GFA staff members set up booths and shared special editions of the SEND! magazine (now called GFA World Magazine), sharing about the work. Many new sponsors for national missionaries were raised up at that time, and the Canadian office of Gospel for Asia (GFA) officially opened on November 19, 1984. The office is currently located at 245 King St East in Stoney Creek, ON.

The Mission Grows

Since it first began, the work of Gospel for Asia (GFA World) has grown to include radio and film ministry, child sponsorship, providing practical and income generating gifts to impoverished families, digging wells and providing clean water, disaster relief, special ministry to women and those afflicted with leprosy, and the mission has recently expanded into the continent of Africa! Gospel for Asia (GFA World) also provides discipleship opportunities for young people in the West, and in June of 2022 Gospel for Asia (GFA) in the US is hosting their first ever Set Apart youth conference. Some of the GFA staff are former students whose lives were forever changed when they came to GFA’s Discipleship Program.

The staff at GFA World celebrated the 37th anniversary with special Danish Butter Cookies, a longstanding tradition, and a staff photo was taken. The staff are incredibly grateful for all that the Lord has done in the last 37 years and thank God for the many faithful donor and sponsors who have risen and joined with us to bring practical help and Hope to thousands of needy people. We are very thankful to our volunteers who have stood with us through thick and thin, sharing about the ministry in their churches and at conferences, and even helping in the office.

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is thankful for all that the Lord has done in the past 37 years and look forward to all that God will do in the years to come.


About Gospel for Asia – GFA World

GFA World (www.gfa.ca) is a leading faith-based global mission agency, helping national missionaries 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/.

Media interested in interviews with Gospel For Asia should contact Gregg Wooding at InChrist Communications @ 972-567-7660 or gwooding@inchristcommuications.com


Learn how to get involved with God’s work in Asia. Some plant, others water, but God gives the increase. Discover some of the many ways you can touch the lives of precious men, women and children in Asia using your God-given talents. Get involved right where you are!

Read more blogs on Humanitarian Services and World Missions on Patheos from GFA World.

Read what 25 Christian Leaders are affirming about GFA World.


Source: GFA World Digital Media News Room, GFA World Canada Celebrates Their 37th Anniversary

July 2, 2021

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 – Discussing GFA World celebrating 42 years of showing the love of Christ by meeting practical needs of impoverished communities across Asia. 

The Lord has been using GFA World to share Good News, to send indigenous workers to provide help to needy communities, and to grow Bible-believing churches over the past 42 years. We’ve enjoyed global recognition as a major faith-based humanitarian organization. However, our primary mission remains to represent Jesus Christ and His love through word and deed across Asia.

Discussing GFA World celebrating 42 years of help & meeting the practical needs of impoverished communities across Asia with the love of Christ.The humanitarian aid aspects of our ministry includes:

And yet, there is so much more.

Many may not realize the marvelous ways the Lord has used Gospel for Asia (GFA World) to minister to the millions of people in Asia. Reaching out to those who have never experienced God’s love is just the beginning of the process it takes to establish local churches that not only serve their immediate communities but endeavor to provide help and hope to outlying villages.

Sharing

The humanitarian ministries listed above highlight the different ways we share help and hope with the hopeless, and transforming communities in despair through practical ways that help them escape persistent poverty.

These specific Gospel for Asia (GFA) ministries address practical, everyday needs that communities have, like the need for clean water, sanitation, food, basic health care, education and vocational support. They are provided with a generous dose of local loving-kindness to express the heart of Christ and his love for all people.

Sending

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) also supports national workers who share the love of Christ with their neighbors. As these relationships deepen, more and more people experience God’s love, and a new fellowship is born as new believers gather together for fellowship and discipleship.

The national worker often takes on the role of pastoring this congregation and will also continue ministering to surrounding villages where the name of Jesus is still unknown.

Growing

Generous and faithful donors provide a portion of the funding for the construction of places of worship. However, we believe that a healthy church is a self-supporting church. In fact, there are many churches that are now self-supporting, meaning they are a full-fledged church with land, a building, and believers who are giving enough via their tithes and offerings to sustain their church and its various ministries to help their community.

Local believers are taught how to do their part – and they are quite willing to do so. For example, in one year, the believers in one country financed 70 percent of the construction of 48 new church buildings. More than 400 self-supporting churches have been established with the support of Gospel for Asia (GFA World) in this nation. The believers there are poor, yet they have personally sent and supported 75 national workers in their own nation and have constructed about 280 churches.

Sharing God’s love and message of new life remains at the heart of all of GFA World’s ministry. It is wonderful to see so many churches established that are self-governing, self-financed, and self-propagating after 42 years of prayer and faithful service.

Gospel for Asia (GFA World) is committed to continuing its faithful support of indigenous believers who are sharing Christ’s love, providing hope and help to impoverished communities in practical ways, and fostering new congregations.


June 6, 2022

WILLS POINT, TX – Gospel for Asia (GFA World and affiliates like Gospel for Asia Canada) founded by KP Yohannan, issued a Special Report on the ugly truths of world hunger: “Scandal of Starvation” — world hunger is a long-term social and global crisis, directly or indirectly causing around 9 million deaths each year – more than AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis combined.

A student washing her hands outside latrines.
A student washes her hands outside newly built latrines at the primary school in Kuzungula District, Southern Province, Zambia. Inadequate and inequitable access to safe water and sanitation services, coupled with poor hygiene practices, continue to threaten the health and growth of children in African nations like Ethiopia, Zambia, Zimbabwe and others. © UNICEF/UN0145990/Schermbrucker

Hunger Close to Home

If hunger is obvious across great swaths of Africa and Asia, it is not so evident in other parts of the world. But that does not mean it is not an issue. Hans Konrad Biesalski, a German physician and professor of chemistry and nutrition, has detailed the challenge of “hidden hunger” in a similarly titled book.

Hans Konrad Biesalski
Prof. Dr. Biesalski launched the Hidden Hunger Congress, which draws attention to hidden malnutrition.Photo by University of Hohenheim / Jana Kay

He refers to micronutrient malnutrition, which affects a third of the world’s population. Even if someone’s stomach isn’t entirely empty, it may not be filled with the vitamins and minerals their body needs. Citing a four-fold increase in cases of rickets in England over a 15-year period, he warns that micronutrient inadequacies “are to be found in the developed world as well as in the developing world, and their current European rate of growth in the developed world gives cause for concern.”

According to the U.N., more than 2 billion people, the majority in low- and middle-income countries, do not have access to enough safe and nutritious food. It is not exclusively a problem of poorer nations: One in 12 of the population of North America does not get to eat enough regularly.

Many people go hungry in the United States, though typically more episodically than continually, as in other parts of the world. Just over one in ten American households—almost 40 million people, 11 million of them children—were “food insecure” at some stage during 2018. The good news is that figure is down from the Great Recession rates of a decade ago.

Rates of need varied widely from less than eight percent in New Hampshire to almost 17 percent in New Mexico. Overall, food insecurity was higher in cities than in rural communities, with the suburbs faring best.

From its research, Feeding America finds children in the U.S. more likely to face hunger than the rest of the population, ranging from one in ten in North Dakota to one in four in New Mexico. The organization notes that the health, social, and behavioral problems hungry children are at risk from are exacerbated during school holidays, when feeding programs are suspended.

Gospel for Asia-supported workers feeding children
You can make an impact in the lives of needy kids! One of the greatest feelings in the world is knowing that we as individuals can make a difference in the life of a child who’s food insecure. A healthy, nutritious meal once each day is just one of the many benefits children receive while enrolled in GFA’s Bridge of Hope Program, which supports tens of thousands of kids throughout Asia.

Good News in Word and Deed

While GFA’s field partners join in the awareness-raising focus of World Hunger Day and World Food Day, they are more quietly involved in tackling hunger year-round. Food is an integral part of the 500-plus Bridge of Hope centers run in slums and villages across South Asia. The free education program, which is currently being offered to around 70,000 enrolled children, is a fundamental part of helping improve their futures, and lunch is as important as the lessons.

For students like brother and sister Panav and Kajiri, the nutritious curry and rice they served at Bridge of Hope is an important supplement to the basic food they get at home: bread and milk for breakfast, with fried vegetables, eggs, and chapatis for supper.

Some question faith-based organizations’ involvement in humanitarian efforts like feeding the hungry, despite Jesus’ clear example of caring for the poor in practical ways, because they suspect mixed motives among givers or receivers, or both. They talk of so-called “rice Christians,” who pay lip service to belief for the benefits they get.

For K.P. Yohannan, it’s a false dichotomy. “The huge battles we face against hunger, poverty and suffering in Asia and around the world are in part spiritual, not simply physical or social as secularists would have us believe,” he says. “We cannot separate the visible and the invisible in this battle.”

Many people go hungry in the United States, though typically more episodically than continually, as in other parts of the world. Just over one in ten American households—almost 40 million people, 11 million of them children—were “food insecure” at some stage during 2018.

Sometimes providing food for today is all that can be done, but GFA’s field partners look for ways to provide food for tomorrow and the day after. Their work follows the old adage about giving someone a fish, to feed them once, or teaching them to fish, so they can continue to feed themselves.

GFA’s field partners provide fishing nets and other income-generating supplies such as sewing machines, livestock and rickshaws through Christmas gift distribution programs. Palan stands among thousands of people who have received such gifts. Since Palan had no land of his own to work, his income depended on the fish he could catch, but he had only one poor quality net. The one he received through the Gospel for Asia (GFA) supported gift distribution means he can now meet his needs. In 2018, Gospel for Asia (GFA) workers presented income-generating and life-improving Christmas gifts to almost a quarter of a million people like Palan.

Man casting a fishing net
Since Palan had no land of his own to work, his family depended on the fish he could catch for food and income, but he had only one poor quality net. The new one he received as a gift from Gospel for Asia (GFA) partners means he can now meet his family’s everyday needs for good food and healthy nutrition.

It is easy to get overwhelmed by the scale of a problem, believing that one person’s efforts will not make much of a difference. But Jesus’s example of addressing hunger offers one of the greatest examples of how giving just a little can make a big impact.

After a long day listening to Him teach, the crowd of thousands was hungry. When Jesus told His disciples to feed them, they couldn’t see how. They only had the lunch a small boy offered: five barley loaves and two fish. Yet God multiplied that to meet everyone’s needs.

In the same way, we should not focus on what we think can’t be achieved. We should instead give and do what we can with the faith and expectation that God will take and use it in a way that exceeds what seems possible. What are practical ways to do that?

Be more intentional about reducing the amount of food that gets wasted in your home, to help make a dent in the squandering supply chain.

Support local organizations that redistribute surplus produce to those in need. You don’t even need to leave home to do that: the annual National Association of Letter Carriers’ Stamp Out Hunger National Food Drive sees mailmen and -women collecting donations of non-perishable foods on their rounds on the second Saturday in May.

Each time you dine out, buy someone else a meal by donating to Gospel for Asia (GFA) or some other organization feeding the hungry.

These small steps may not seem like much, but they certainly count in God’s sight. When Jesus told His followers they will be rewarded for having fed Him when He was hungry, He said that some would be perplexed.

“Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You?” they will ask. The King will respond, “Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me” (Matthew 25: 37, 40).


Give Food, Aid to Victims of Hunger & Starvation

Learn about how to bring practical help in Jesus’ name to the suffering and needy, relieving the burdened, rescuing the endangered and revealing God’s compassion to the people of Asia through Gospel for Asia Compassion Services.


Read the rest of Gospel for Asia’s Special Report on The Scandal of Starvation in a World of Plenty: World Hunger’s Ugly Truths Revealed — Part 1, Part 2

This Special Report originally appeared on gfa.org.

Read another Special Report from Gospel for Asia on Poverty: Public Enemy #1 – Eliminating Extreme Poverty Worldwide is Possible, But Not Inevitable.

Learn more by reading this special report from Gospel for Asia: Solutions to Poverty-Line Problems of the Poor & Impoverished — Education’s Impact on Extreme Poverty Eradication.


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 7, 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 assist the poor and deprived worldwide, issued this first part of a Special Report on the unstoppable compassion force of national missionary workers.

GFA World (Gospel for Asia) issued this Special Report on the unstoppable compassion force of national missionary workers.
To help a village on top of a Himalayan mountain, this Gospel for Asia (GFA) national worker rode a bus for hours, then hiked uphill for three hours more, to show the love of Jesus by meeting their practical needs.

A young Asian woman wearing a white robe and head covering cradles an elderly woman’s feet that are horribly deformed by leprosy and gently washes them in a bowl of water.

The old woman can scarcely believe someone is touching her, caring for her, loving her. Most people would recoil from this woman and avoid the leprosy colony where she lives. The colony is a place of disease, disfigurement and disability. Its residents are used to being treated as outcasts by others and viewed as cursed. They are used to their deformed bodies being seen as objects of ugliness.

Geeta, Sisters of Compassion, cleans and bandages the wounds of a leprosy patient
Geeta (pictured), a Sister of Compassion, works in a leprosy colony where 30 families live. Many of the residents are unable to work, so the Sisters visit regularly to encourage them, clean their wounds, cut their hair and trim their nails, give them baths, wash their clothes, clean their houses and cook for those who are unable to do so themselves.

But to the young woman dressed in white, these feet are beautiful.

She and her companions, known as Sisters of Compassion, come here regularly to clean wounds, cut hair and trim nails. They see beauty amid the truncated limbs and deeply scarred bodies that few are willing to look upon, let alone touch.

As locals and neighbors, the Sisters fully understand the culture and customs into which they pour their compassion. They appreciate and respect the historical and religious traditions, speak the local language and know the nuances of the dialect. And they’re specially trained in leprosy wound care and family counseling.

To all this, they add the unspoken language of Christ’s love.

“We do all this because of the love of God,” says Geeta, one of the Sisters trained to care for people with leprosy.

No one else could have the impact these women are having on their own people, often their own neighbors. Their roots of love go deep, and their branches of compassion reach into places where no one else goes.

While their long white robes, known as saris, might appear like unusual attire to Western eyes, the significance in South Asia is huge. The Sisters’ simple handspun uniform mirrors the traditional sari once worn by the lowliest of servants in Asia. It says to the old woman whose body has been disfigured with leprosy: “I am here to serve you. I see your worth.”

Mungeli Das, a leprosy patient
People like Mungeli Das (above) receive help from the Sisters of Compassion. Says Geeta: “If we didn’t help them, no one would have served them or taken care of them … they would die without any hope. Whether it’s a literacy class or cleaning their wounds, we do all of this because of the love of God.”

Mungeli Das, who contracted leprosy as a little girl more than 50 years ago, was treated for five years, then cured. Because of the deformity left by the disease, the leprosy colony has been her home for decades. She clings to the help and hope that the Sisters of Compassion bring her. The Sisters follow the example of Jesus who, according to the gospels, touched and healed those, like Mungeli, with leprosy.

“Before the Sisters came, there was no one to help trim our hair, cut our nails or help us clean our houses and encourage us,” Mungeli says. “The Sisters help us by cleaning our wounds, and they make us happy and encouraged [us] all the time.”

In places where outsiders, foreigners and foreign mission workers are prohibited or restricted, national workers and national missionaries have much more opportunity to serve. These women and men are welcomed and considered trustworthy counselors and friends of the community.

Outsiders may come and go. But national missionaries, such as GFA World’s Sisters of Compassion, stand the test of time.

“Each woman who serves as a Sister of Compassion is full of sacrificial love, just like Jesus,” explains Gospel for Asia (GFA World). “They do the most unglamorous things, such as bathing someone … or feeding people who’ve been affected by leprosy [and] no longer have any fingers [to] feed themselves.”

Sisters of Compassion teaching practical skills to struggling women
Teaching practical skills to help struggling women make a living is just one of the many things Sisters of Compassion do as they serve their communities. In all they do, these national missionaries demonstrate the love of Jesus for the poor and impoverished.

Unsung Heroes of the Frontline

CT Studd
CT Studd was a foreign missionary to China, India, Sudan and the Congo who said: “Nothing in this world would last, but it was worthwhile living for the world to come.”

While Western workers often venture to far-flung places and do amazing things, it’s the unsung heroes of the frontline—the local, indigenous people—who consistently make the greatest impact and bring true transformation to their own communities.

In the past, missions trailblazers like William Carey from England in the 1700s, and C.T. Studd in the late 1850s and early 1900s, paved the way for swarms of foreign missionaries and humanitarian workers, mostly from Western countries.

But the tide has changed.

National workers are the “new pioneers” of the 21st century, and they’re proving to be an unstoppable compassion force.

“[National] workers toil to bring healing and hope,” GFA World says. “They touch thousands of lives with the tangible love of God through slum, leprosy, medical and disaster relief ministries. Thanks to them, men, women and children who otherwise might have gone without help … have been blessed with much-needed aid.”

Beauty of Local Mission Workers

On a worldwide scale, according to the Center for the Study of Global Christianity (CSGC), there were 430,000 foreign mission workers overseas in 2021, compared with 13.2 million national workers (local citizens).

John Allen Chau, American Missionary
John Allen Chau was an American missionary killed by the Sentinelese, a self-isolated people, after illegally travelling to North Sentinel Island in an effort to preach to them.

That means national mission workers—those serving within their own culture and nation—now outnumber foreign workers by more than 30 to 1.

The CSGC predicts the number of national mission workers globally will explode to 17 million by 2050, while the number of foreign workers will increase to 600,000.

To be sure, Western Christians are still drawn to overseas missions in large numbers. But the exporting of expatriates to distant foreign fields can come at a high cost, potentially hindering progress.

In extreme cases, the quest of well-meaning foreigners with a zeal to exercise their faith and do good can end in tragedy, as in the headline-making case of a U.S. mission worker in 2018.

While attempting to make contact with the “unreached” indigenous people of North Sentinel Island, an isolated island in the Bay of Bengal, it’s believed David Allen Chau was speared to death. As of the date this article was published, his body had not been recovered.

Chau’s death was tragic and highlights the very real dangers facing non-nationals in remote areas. But it’s not only the safety of foreigners that’s an issue. It’s also the cost in dollars of sending Western workers and keeping them in their overseas assignment.

Pie chart representation of national mission workers vastly outnumbering foreign mission workers by more than 30:1
Statistics from Center for the Study of Global Christianity, “Status of Global Christianity, 2021, in the Context of 1900–2050.”

Counting the Cost of Foreign Workers vs National Workers

Missions Fest International, an annual global missions conference, spotlighted the financial cost of “sending” a Western mission worker compared with the cost of supporting a national worker in a provocative article on its website titled “Should We Stop Sending Missionaries?”

Julian Lukins with Stephen Kaziro of the Church of Uganda
Author Julian Lukins, pictured in Kampala, Uganda, with archdeacon Stephen Kaziro of the Church of Uganda who oversees dozens of village churches, including several that also act as local health clinics in the rural Namutumba district.

While stating there’s still a great need and important role for foreign workers in many parts of the world, the article points out it typically costs more than $50,000 a year to support a Western family in a developing nation such as Africa and Asia—an annual sum that could help support more than 50 national workers, the article says. For example, based on my personal experience in Uganda, an American family of four living in Africa might pay $1,000 a month for expat health insurance coverage that includes emergency medical evacuation. Because of security issues, they might have to live in a secure compound at high rent and pay hundreds of dollars every month for guards 24/7. Legal paperwork and visas can cost hundreds, even thousands, of dollars every year.

Run the numbers and it’s perhaps no surprise, then, that national workers—willing and able to live far simpler and free of immigration restrictions—are increasingly seen as a wise investment.

More than 140 organizations “are now built on the premise of gathering and sending money [to support national workers], not people,” the article says.
A national missionary worker teaches a group of children how to read
In a village where not one person could read or write, this missionary is showing the love of God by teaching children how to read.

While short-term overseas missions trips still play a huge role in the West, the merit and value of supporting local, native workers over the long haul has become widely embraced as the most effective approach in the quest for the “holy grail” of missions: to bring long-term, total transformation to impoverished communities.

Certainly, over the past couple of decades, it’s become a trend in Western nations for people, especially young people in their 20s, to travel to places in Africa, Asia or South America to volunteer in orphanages, children’s homes and the like.

Photos of young Westerners cuddling babies and surrounded by excited children in Africa and Asia have flooded social media and reinforced the so-called “white savior” label, often unfairly attached to compassionate individuals from the U.S., Canada, U.K. and other wealthy countries who simply want to make a difference in the world.

But now, it seems, this missions phenomenon—undoubtedly impacted further by COVID-19 travel restrictions—could be in decline.

An article in The Atlantic put it like this: “Among the new generation of Western Christian missionaries, the so-called ‘white savior complex’—a term for the mentality of relatively rich Westerners who set off to ‘save’ people of color in poorer countries but sometimes do more harm than good—is slowly fading.”


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If this special report has touched your heart and you would like to help national workers show Jesus’ love by meeting practical needs, then make a generous one time or monthly gift to support a national missionary in Asia or Africa.


Read the rest of this Gospel for Asia – Transforming Communities (GFA World) Special Report: National Workers: Unstoppable Compassion Force Part 2, Part 3


About GFA World

GFA World (Gospel for Asia) 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://press.gfa.org/news.


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

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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.


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This Special Report originally appeared on gfa.org.

August 5, 2019

WILLS POINT, TX – Gospel for Asia (GFA) Special Report on child labor today: Millions of Children Trapped between Extreme Poverty and the Profits of Others

Why Are These Children Working?

Many children work to survive, but it is a combination of perverse incentives and unjust business practices that creates the demand for child labour.

The Families’ Context

Families caught in generational or situational abject poverty are desperate. Some are suffering from the social inequities of the culture in which they live. Others have been displaced by war or famine and have no source of income at all. Either of these exacerbates the situation.

In many cases, the parents are illiterate and have no skills, and whatever jobs they have pay very little. These families are so poor and often in so much debt that they are not likely to recover from either without enlisting their children as breadwinners. They can see no way out of their poverty, so they sacrifice the future (the education and success of their children) on the altar of the immediate (survival now).

This mother and her five children are returning home from a ten-hour work day in the fields
This mother and her five children are returning home from a ten-hour work day in the fields

Some poor families see artisanal mining and other occupations as their chance to rise above their poverty. In fact, families of children working in the cobalt mines of the DRC have proven to be strongly resistant to efforts to establish or enforce child labor laws, as doing so would eliminate a reliable source of family income.

That resistance is not uncommon. A single child working in cotton fields can contribute as much as a quarter of the family’s income. Why would a family want to give up 25 percent of their income when it is already nearly impossible for them to meet their family’s needs for food, clothing and shelter? Their focus is on staying alive.

Partly to blame for their decision to send their children to work is their lack of understanding of the world outside their limited geographic sphere. They have little or no concept of the profits being made at the end of the supply chains that are linked to their hands and feet.

Remember Lukasa? On a good day, he makes about $9 mining about 22 pounds of cobalt. That’s $0.41 per pound. The market price of cobalt reached $80,490 per metric ton in 2018. That is $36.52 per pound or 89 times what Lukasa makes. On a good day.

These people live in desperate circumstances. Losing income will only make matters worse.

The Employers’ Context

Employers are responsible for generating a reasonable return on shareholders’ investments. It’s all about profitability. No business can continually operate at a loss. The highly competitive nature of international trade is predicated on getting products to market quickly, efficiently and at the lowest prices possible for consumers. Each level of the supply chain, from the top down, pushes the entire chain to reduce costs. The key for each link is to acquire at the lowest possible cost and to sell at the highest cost the market will bear.

152 million

children are in forced child labour

When businesses throughout the chain fail to manage this dynamic, they go out of business. When they succeed, the two links at the far ends of the chain suffer the most. The first-touch laborers are destined to subsistence wages or less, and the consumers expend more for the final product. There are no winners at either end of the chain.

Many employers maximize their gain from production by employing low-cost labor. Children are the least expensive labor; they have little or no bargaining power, and they are easy to manipulate. Because of the desperate status of millions of families in developing countries, unscrupulous employers take advantage of their willingness—or force them—covertly or otherwise to minimize their costs.

One hundred and fifty-two million children are in forced child labor worldwide. Children are the least expensive, have no bargaining power and are easy to manipulate. Because of this, many employers sadly see this as an opportunity and take advantage of children.
One hundred and fifty-two million children are in forced child labour worldwide. Children are the least expensive, have no bargaining power and are easy to manipulate. Because of this, many employers sadly see this as an opportunity and take advantage of children.

Other Obstacles to Ending Child Labour

Child labour is a well-known evil, and it is receiving global resistance. In Target 8.7 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, member nations are obliged to take “immediate and effective measures to … secure the prohibition and elimination of the worst forms of child labour, including recruitment and use of child soldiers, and by 2025 end child labour in all its forms.”

UNICEF is the UN torchbearer for changing the cultural acceptance of child labour and offering “supporting strategies and programming to provide alternative income to families.” They expect to employ a multi-prong agenda, including legal reform; education; social protection; and access to health services in cooperation with other organizations, including corporate, governmental and NGOs, to accelerate child labour reduction in countries around the world.

Groups such as these are making headway in combatting child labour, but this global problem is not going down without a fight.

Obstacle 1: Lip Service

Maplecroft’s insights and analysis on Child Labour Index exposed the ease with which countries can and do pay lip service to the advancement of child labour eradication and other human rights. They simply sign a commitment that makes them acceptable in the sight of their peers but which they have no intention to keep. For that reason, successful eradication of child labour may be predicated upon the ability to “differentiate between the states taking appropriate action to stop child labour and those that are just paying lip service.”

Obstacle 2: Intransigence

Intransigence is being discovered within all levels of both government and industry.

Pakistan has ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child and enacted laws to deal with eliminating child labor. However, an investigation launched by Dawn News discovered that the departments responsible for implementing those laws showed little or no concern about doing so.

The laws have been written. They just aren’t enforced.

Article 11 of the Pakistan Constitution states, “No child below the age of fourteen years should be engaged in any factory or mine or any other hazardous employment.”

Nonetheless, the Dawn report revealed that around 1.5 million children were engaged in labor work across a single province. The laws have been written. They just aren’t enforced.

In June 2017, the International Labor Rights Union reported that not only is leading chocolate company Godiva not fully onboard with actively reducing the use of child labor, but it is “lagging furthest behind in their commitments and urgently needs an added push to improve.”

In yet another incident, Human Rights Watch reported in 2016 that by the order of local officials in Uzbekistan, classes were cancelled and children as young as 10 years old were removed from school and sent to pick cotton.

As these examples illustrate, economic results were considered more important than the morality of employing child labor.

In Pakistan, economic results are considered more important than the morality of employing child laborers. The laws have been written that no child below the age of 14 should endure work in a hazardous environment. Sadly, these laws aren’t enforced, and many children suffer because of it. © ILO
In Pakistan, economic results are considered more important than the morality of employing child laborers. The laws have been written that no child below the age of 14 should endure work in a hazardous environment. Sadly, these laws aren’t enforced, and many children suffer because of it. © ILO

Obstacle 3: Limited Resources

Sometimes what looks like intransigence is simply a lack of resources.

Laws, regulations, mandates, goals, and agendas require resources to implement, monitor and enforce.

According to the Viet Nam News, “Vietnam was the first country in Asia and second country in the world to ratify the United Nations’ International Convention on the Rights of the Child.” Yet an estimated 1.75 million children are working in the nation. The labor inspectorate there is noted as “chronically underfunded and understaffed,” and if penalties are imposed, they often “amount to no more than a slap on the wrist.”

Although signs are posted, child labor still flourishes. One of the most needed areas of law enforcement is the ability to enforce laws where the laws already exist.
Although signs are posted, child labor still flourishes. One of the most needed areas of law enforcement is the ability to enforce laws where the laws already exist.

Tulane University professor William Bertrand has studied lofty aspirations, including federal and international mandates, and found that some—if not many—are “totally unachievable.” But it sure looks good on paper—especially to constituents.

From a corporate perspective, even if a company or entire industry budgets substantial financial outlays to prevent child exploitation as evidence of their “commitment”, that often does not reflect progress on the ground. One insider observed, “They talk a lot about the money spent on various activities related to child labor, but when we did the calculations, a fair proportion of that money was spent on sitting around and talking about it in London and Geneva.”

Funds spent on pontification in luxurious facilities have no effect on the places where they are most needed.

Included in the “most needed” is the ability to enforce laws where they exist.

Valiant Richey of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, told Reuters, “We can’t prosecute [cases of labor exploitation] fast enough. … The scope of the problem exceeds our ability to respond to it as law enforcement.”

250,000+

Krygyzstani children subjected to hazardous work

A 2018 study by the Kyrgyzstan Federation of Trade Unions (KFTU) found that implementing and enforcing are inconsistent at best. Although it had been 10 years since the country ratified the International Labor Organization convention for the elimination of the worst forms of child labor, more than 250,000 children were still subjected to hazardous work. The KFTU said the lack of ability to enforce the child labor laws is the greatest single obstacle to the elimination of child labor in the country.

Obstacle 4: Pushback

Unfortunately, this problem of pushback is as apparent in the United States as it is anywhere else in the world. In 2011, the Department of Labor (DOL) attempted to update the list of agricultural jobs dangerous for children under the Fair Labor Standards Act, but it was stymied by resistance from farm lobbying groups, including the American Farm Bureau.

The lobbying association reminded the DOL that “Farm Bureau advocates for the interests of farmers.” The powerful group is composed of farmers and related parties. Those delegates and their representatives seek to protect the farming industry, not to ban the employment of children on tobacco, cotton, or other farms. Farm lobbying groups say that restricting child workers in the agricultural industry threatens the fabric of American farms. Their position is that farms are generally family-run businesses. Evidence, however, suggests that child labor is more of a problem on large, industrially-operated endeavors.

This 17-year-old young woman began working on a tobacco farm in America when she was just 13 years old. She shared, “None of my bosses or contractors or crew leaders have ever told us anything about pesticides and how we can protect ourselves from them...When I worked with my mom, she would take care of me, and she would like always make sure I was okay... Our bosses don’t give us anything except for our checks. That’s it.” © 2015 Benedict Evans for Human Rights Watch
This 17-year-old young woman began working on a tobacco farm in America when she was just 13 years old. She shared, “None of my bosses or contractors or crew leaders have ever told us anything about pesticides and how we can protect ourselves from them…When I worked with my mom, she would take care of me, and she would like always make sure I was okay… Our bosses don’t give us anything except for our checks. That’s it.” © 2015 Benedict Evans for Human Rights Watch

Once again, there is a subtle undertone in pushback that child labor helps the families of these children to have food, clothing, and shelter that would not be available otherwise.

When we understand that this is the nature of the beast in the United States, it should increase our awareness of the severity of pushback faced in developing countries.

There is a subtle undertone in pushback that child labor helps the families of children to have food, clothing, and shelter that would not be available otherwise.

Consider the case of Alternative Turkmenistan News (ATN) reporter Gaspar Matalaev. He is an investigative reporter working undercover to expose the state-run nature of forced and child labor during cotton harvests in Turkmenistan. Matalaev was arrested in 2016, two days after he published a report on the newspaper’s website about the state-orchestrated forced labor of children.

Refusal to contribute to the cotton harvest is considered insubordination, incitement to sabotage and contempt of the Turkmenistan homeland. Reporting on it is even worse.

Matalaev was tortured with electric shocks until he reportedly confessed to filing a fraudulent report. He remains imprisoned in a labor camp and is suffering from ill health as a result of the poor conditions.

There is pushback against attempts to eradicate child labor from the children and their families to the executive boardrooms, to the halls of humanitarian aid institutions, and to the highest national political offices.

This mother is hugging her 7-year-old daughter Daoussiya tightly with a smile full of joy. This is the first time she has seen Daoussiya in four months. The young girl left home with her father to beg in Algeria as a means of living, against the mother’s will. She was caught by police during a migrant round up and was re-united with her mother in Niger. © UNICEF / Gilbertson
This mother is hugging her 7-year-old daughter Daoussiya tightly with a smile full of joy. This is the first time she has seen Daoussiya in four months. The young girl left home with her father to beg in Algeria as a means of living, against the mother’s will. She was caught by police during a migrant round up and was re-united with her mother in Niger. © UNICEF / Gilbertson

Child Labor: Not Gone, but Forgotten: Part 1 | Part 3

Source: Gospel for Asia Special Report, Child Labor: Not Gone, but Forgotten

Learn more about the children who find themselves discarded, orphaned and abused, and the home and hope that they can be given through agencies like Gospel for Asia.

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November 13, 2018

Wills Point, Texas – GFA Special Report (Gospel for Asia) – Discussing the worldwide strategies and efforts for malaria prevention, to one day create a world where no one dies of malaria.

Bringing Hope to the World

The fight against malaria has been a multi-faceted one, receiving renewed attention in the late 1990s with the 1998 formation of the Roll Back Malaria Partnership, a global network to coordinate efforts among governments, UN agencies, international organizations and affected countries. Following that, the Global Fund, which fights malaria, AIDS and tuberculosis by providing grants to countries addressing those problems, was established in 2001.

Numerous charities have formed in the wake of these actions; one of the largest is Malaria No More. Its inception came at a White House event in 2006 that launched former President Bush’s malaria initiative. Nothing But Nets is the United Nations’ campaign to end malaria and enjoys broad support. Imagine No Malaria was launched by the United Methodist Church and partners with Nothing But Nets. In addition to raising money for nets, Imagine works on malaria prevention and education, including distributing malaria advocacy kits for churches.

Major Christian ministries are also active in anti-malaria work, such as Samaritan’s Purse, Compassion International and World Vision. The latter’s Malawi arm announced in mid-February that it would distribute 10.9 million treated mosquito nets by the end of 2018 as part of that African nation’s malaria-control program.

“As World Vision Malawi (WVM), we have never undertaken such a mass campaign, but through close collaboration with the Ministry of Health and the Global Fund Country Coordinating Mechanism, we are going to achieve this,” said Charles Chimombo, WVM’s director of programs.

Among lesser-known, but no less effective, efforts on the ground are those by such ministries as Gospel for Asia (GFA). Based in Wills Point, Texas, for more than 30 years GFA has provided humanitarian assistance and spiritual hope to millions across Asia.

In addition to such services as feeding and educating thousands of needy children, offering free medical care and training, and drilling clean water wells, the ministry distributed 600,000 mosquito nets in 2016.

Fighting Malaria – A Chilling Disease (Part 3) - KP Yohannan - Gospel for Asia
On World Malaria Day in 2016, GFA-supported workers distributed 2,000 mosquito nets to needy families in a community in Asia. Mosquito netting is one of the most cost-effective protections from the spread of diseases transmitted by mosquito bites.

“In many cases, simple changes can create a profound difference in everyday health,” said KP Yohannan, founder and director of GFA. “Christ calls upon us to care for the poor, which is why we are there to offer tools like mosquito nets, which can literally make the difference between life and death.”

One case study of a family helped by such gestures involves a couple named Jitan and Shara and their two children. Living in an area where temperatures commonly soar above 100 degrees for weeks left Jitan, a laborer in the fields, a prime target for the mosquitoes breeding in nearby stagnant ponds and water reservoirs.

Strategic Battle on Malaria Prevention - KP Yohannan - Gospel for Asia
Shara and her family are now protected from disease with a mosquito net.

In 2015, one of those mosquitoes bit Jitan and injected malaria parasites into his body.

Fortunately, medical treatment (and prayers from Shara and her father) enabled Jitan to recover after three weeks.

Five months later, the GFA-supported pastor at Shara’s church put her name down as one of 150 recipients for an upcoming GFA-supported mosquito net distribution. Not only did the fabric mean safety at night from mosquito bites, but to Shara it also symbolized how God saw even their smallest needs.

“My husband suffered with malaria fever,” she said. “Consequently, he is physically weak. But this mosquito net will be protection for my family now.”

The gift touched Jitan’s heart as well.

“Christians not only pray for people, but they also fulfill the basic needs of people in the community,” he said.

One night, as they crawled under the safety of their net, he told Shara: “Really, the Lord Jesus is fulfilling our basic need.”

Strategic Battle on Malaria Prevention

When the Gates Foundation adopted its “Accelerate to Zero” strategy in late 2013, it established a core set of foundational principles to make progress toward the goal of eradicating malaria, which it defined as removing the parasites that cause malaria, not simply interrupting transmission.

It sees new drug regimens and strategies as key to that goal, saying clinical cures for individuals do not eliminate the parasites responsible for transmission.

The majority of infections occur in asymptomatic people, who are a source of continued transmission. A successful eradication effort will target such infection through community-based efforts.

Emerging resistance to current drugs and insecticides is a threat to progress, which must guide the use of current tools and development of new ones. And since malaria is biologically and ecologically different throughout the world, strategies must be developed and implemented on a local or regional level.

Nearly five years later, how is the fight proceeding? WHO’s latest malaria report shows some bright spots, such as 44 countries reporting less than 10,000 malaria cases in 2016, compared to 37 nations in 2010.

A malaria researcher sorts mosquitoes - KP Yohannan - Gospel for Asia
A malaria researcher sorts mosquitoes. (Photo by Malaria Consortium on Flickr / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

There is also better access to tools for malaria prevention, such as insecticide-treated bednets, and the testing of suspected cases in the public health sector has increased in most regions. Except for the eastern Mediterranean region, where mortality rates have remained unchanged, all regions reported declines in mortality between 2010–2016.

Yet, despite an unprecedented period of success, Dr. Noor says the corresponding slowdowns in mortality decline in some regions, coverage gaps and lack of medical care have slowed progress.

“Identifying what is behind this trend is difficult to pinpoint,” he says. “In any given country, there may be a multitude of reasons as to why the burden of malaria is increasing. Factors impacting progress could range from insufficient funding and gaps in malaria prevention intervention to climate-related variations.”

In its latest report on malaria, WHO set global targets for 2030 to achieve its vision of a world free of the disease. The three pillars of its plan:

  1. Ensure universal access to malaria prevention, diagnosis and treatment
  2. Accelerate efforts toward elimination
  3. Transform malaria surveillance into a core intervention.

Accompanying each target are preceding milestones in 2020 and 2025. The four include:

  1. Reduce malaria mortality rates globally compared with 2015 by at least 90 percent.
  2. Reduce malaria case incidence globally compared with 2015 by at least 90 percent.
  3. Eliminate malaria from countries in which malaria was transmitted in 2015—at least 35 countries.
  4. Preventing re-establishment of malaria in all countries that are malaria free.
Dr. Margaret Chan, former Director-General of the World Health Organization - KP Yohannan - Gospel for Asia
Dr. Margaret Chan, former Director-General of the World Health Organization (2006-2017). (Photo credit WHO/Pierre Albouy)

Director General Dr. Margaret Chan said a major “scale-up” of malaria responses would not only help countries reach 2030’s targets but would also contribute to poverty reduction and other development goals.

“Recent progress on malaria has shown us that, with adequate investments and the right mix of strategies, we can indeed make remarkable strides against this complicated enemy,” she said.

“We will need strong political commitment to see this through, and expanded financing. We should act with resolve, and remain focused on our shared goal to create a world in which no one dies of malaria.

Few would argue with those words.


Fighting Malaria – A Chilling Disease: Part 1 | Part 2

This article originally appeared on gfa.org

To read more on Patheos on the problem of Malaria, go here.

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