True Transformation in Africa
By Dayo Obaweya
“God has blessed Africa with an abundance of human and material resources.”
I have heard this rhetoric used all around me. Yet, we have not been able to utilize this abundance to bring about transformation. There seemed to be a disconnect between the resources and the people. This inconsistency brought a swarm of questions that would lead me into a 25-year journey for understanding:
- What resources does Africa have in common with the rest of the world? How does the rest of the world use its resources differently?
- What about the beliefs and culture of my people could be responsible for this inconsistency?
- How might God be leading us to create lasting change?
In my search for answers, I visited several communities to study what resources were available and how those resources were being used. I eventually discovered what I believe to be the root cause of the problem– a separation between the physical and spiritual ministry in most communities.
In the course of the search, God led me to CHE. When I went through CHE’s Training of Trainers, a veil was removed from my sight. This is the tool! I knew I was being called to bring CHE into my community. Immediately, my ministry partners and I began to mobilize people of all kinds to engage their own communities. We engaged not only churches and individuals of influence, but also reached out to marginalized groups like children, women, and impoverished individuals. Soon, the CHE vision spread surrounding communities.
A recent visit from a partner church in the US helps show how far God has brought our ministry in these communities. Here are some highlights from this trip:
- The team spent several days with the orphans at City of Refuge Ministries, enjoying arts, games, sports, and bible studies with them
- In Avehime, 270 children came to our first Children’s Camp—almost 3 times as many as we expected! Team members led them in both spiritual and physical lessons—from Bible stories and memorization to fitness and music lessons.
- Many of the mothers of these children were led through Women’s Cycle of Life training and were taught some basics of business and accounting.
- In Kotokor, the team led our interns in lessons about health, sewing, carpentry, and cooking. Moreover, they were taught the importance of living a celibate lifestyle until marriage—this is especially unusual in an area with a 95% teen pregnancy rate.
Through steps like these, our communities began to see true transformation— our available resources were being used produce sustainable change and to build relationships with Jesus.
After being introduced to CHE in 1999, Dayo Obaweya has been working to implement wholistic ministry throughout West Africa. He currently is the Regional Coordinator of Medical Ambassadors International for West Africa.
Learn more about Dayo’s work and impact here.