Friday, 15 December 2017

It's not an inspiring photo.  Partly it's the set-up.  Mary* and her family are standing stiffly facing the camera, not the most creative of poses.  On a deeper level there's a sadness in Mary's eyes.  She's been struggling to provide enough for her 2 children to eat so she's at a feeding centre in this village in Burundi.

Here she'll learn how to make nutritious porridge and will be given some flour supplies to last her family for a while.  But how can Mary and her family's lives be transformed long term?  And what hope is there for other families in this poor country where 65% of children under 5 are malnourished?  One key answer is to mobilise the church, through church and community transformation, to empower people to make the most of the resources they do have.

How do I fit into this story?  The new Country Representative for Burundi, a wise
and gentle man, has asked me to help him spread church and community transformation across the country.  I could just provide advice, based on my experience.  However I think the best thing I can do is to build on his understanding and wisdom through coaching him.  Coaching, like church and community transformation, releases people's potential to solve problems for themselves.  Through this small input I hope we can help put some hope into Mary's eyes.

*Name changed for privacy.

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