By: Christine Cooper, Discipleship Coordinator
Freedom Global has always existed to serve the people of Kenya, and serving youth through education and discipleship is a large part of what we do. It is this heart for students that has driven Freedom Global to start a new program called Adopt a School. With this update I want to give a more complete picture of what that is and exciting steps we have taken in the last month. I hope in this update I can share my excitement and hope for this next year in Kenya with you.
“Adopt a School” is a program challenging local churches in Kenya to “adopt” a nearby high school. Our Freedom Global ministry partner Ernest and I visit lead pastors to talk to them about their capacity to reach high schools. Ernest often says, “Churches have the proximity, resources and people to do the job,” and we want to encourage them to use these advantages to serve high school students. I have been told that 70% of the schools in Kenya are owned by a church, but these churches need to do more than just run the school; they need to invest in the youth.
Ernest’s ministry, Completeness, has training opportunities for people who want to work with youth. The training is available to parents, Christian teachers, mentors, senior pastors and youth leaders/workers. Participants can also learn about how to start and run Bible studies and life skills clubs. The lessons are specifically designed to encourage those going through the training to start Bible studies and life skills clubs in a local high school and to equip them with the tools and resources they need to make it work.
Our first two-day training was April 11th-12th, from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. each day. There were sessions on how to be a mentor, how to lead yourself before leading others, how to start a bible study, the importance of God’s word, challenges youth face and how to teach life skills. The training is very practical, and every lesson gives the participants goals and action steps to accomplish them. There was even time to practice putting these skills in action. 17 people from 9 different churches attended the training!
We were also very encouraged by the questions people asked. They really wanted to know how to apply the information they were receiving to real life situations. They shared personal experiences and worked together to get more out of the time together. They also prayed for each other, knowing that they were all there with the same purpose: to learn and be used by God in different places.
As I joined together with the team that had worked so hard to put this training on, I was beyond grateful for what God had provided for us, and it filled me with joy. I can’t put into words how exciting it is to see a way for members of local churches to mentor youth in Kenya.
I believe this is just the beginning and ask that you will join me in prayer that everyone at this training will challenge their church to adopt a school!