God revitalizes whole communities when we apply His Word holistically.

25 years of war in northern Uganda and 60 years in South Sudan have torn apart the social fabric of generations. Communities now in war or postwar are often missing a healthy church, educational system, and economic structure. Favor’s model of community revitalization has been informed by almost 20 years of work and recognizes the church and the Word of God as the center of sustainable, ongoing community development.

Our process begins by meeting village leaders to obtain their support and to schedule a three-day evangelistic outreach that yields a new body of believers and an ongoing prayer community who are trained and discipled through our two-month Portable Bible School (PBS).

During the PBS, villagers gather every weekday morning to receive health and wellness training. Trauma counseling addresses their emotional needs, while health education teaches basic hygiene, sanitation, and mother and child wellness. Family development classes raise parents’ aspirations and clarify family values by equipping them with skills in communication, child development, effective discipline, parenting styles and relationship building as well as the ability to assess and address family concerns.

Morning sessions also include women’s empowerment and instruction in vocational skills. Afternoons hold classes in evangelism, discipleship, holy living, church leadership, prayer and character building. Youth outreach takes place every weekend through Bible studies, vacation Bible schools, purity and morality teaching, and sports outreach.

The Portable Bible School graduations celebrated prominently by local government and religious leaders provides a demarcation for the next development stage. With a new group of trained leaders and with coordination from Favor’s team, these new disciple makers can strengthen the life of existing congregations or plant a new church.

Simultaneously, educational and empowerment projects are customized to this community, planned, and implemented. Common components include bringing a women’s empowerment project, Bible-based adult literacy, or constructing a new church building.

As the training nears completion, construction of a church in the village gives the community a hub for ongoing spiritual, health, and economic development including literacy training and its resources and materials. The church structure also provides a site for mobile medical clinics conducted by visiting doctors. If the village lacks access to clean water, Favor makes connections to drill a community well. Once the church building is complete, ongoing mentoring continues for at least one year to guide and sustain community development.

You can support a whole one-year community revitalization with a one-time gift of $9,000, or five people can give $150 monthly to support a whole revitalization project! These funds pay for trainer wages, travel, curriculum and Bible distribution, and meals for 100 participants during the Portable Bible School and Trauma Counseling. You will transform an entire community by the Word of God applied and leaders multiplied to make disciples for countless generations.

Community Revitalization Component Cost Breakdown

Favor runs the two-month Portable Bible School in every community we reach, plus 2-3 additional education and empowerment components, depending on the villages’ needs and particular aptitudes for fruitfulness:
Portable Bible School & Church Plant (Required)
$3,000
Adult Bible-Based Literacy* $2,000
Church Construction* $3,000
Comm. Health Education & Evangelism* $2,000
Mobile Medical Clinic* $2,000
Trauma Counseling* $2,000
Village Learning Center* $4,000
Women’s Empowerment* $3,000
*These variable components are added for a total of approx. $9,000 per community, depending on their unique needs.

Every community we serve receives a two-month portable Bible school.

Favor’s Portable Bible Schools mobilize new disciple makers in spiritual and physical war zones. Each bootcamp trains participants to live Biblically in Jesus’s Kingdom and multiply disciples in their context.

The Gospel of Jesus is advancing in the transformed lives of entire communities along the Nile River, into areas formerly ruled by witchcraft, Islam, and darkness. Favor’s Community Revitalization ministry is the bread and butter of sustainable national transformation of communities and culture throughout this region.

A large portion of Favor’s 230 indigenous missionaries conduct this community revitalization process in over 100 communities per year, training over 10,000 new indigenous disciple makers annually in Portable Bible Schools and transforming the lives of entire communities around the principles of God’s Word.

After completing a Portable Bible School, Favor will implement some of the following components to see the Kingdom in practice:

pbs graduation blog header

“They wanted to cross the water, so what did they do? They cried to Moses, and Moses cried to God. God said, ‘Raise the rod.’ What happened? The waters parted. They walked on dry ground. But now when Israel was ready to take the Promised Land of Canaan, did God say to Joshua to raise the rod? What did He say? ‘Put your feet in the water!’ It was a different tactic. You better hear God for every battle. The first battle it was ‘Raise the rod.’ The second battle, ‘Put your feet in the middle of opposition, and I will give you the land of Canaan.'”

— Carole Ward

Revitalizing communities is what we do.

We have witnessed how individual and community transformation go hand-in-hand, and so Favor disciples entire communities at a time through portable Bible schools, trauma counseling, church planting, health and medical clinics, and more. The result is a revitalized community with more economic empowerment, educating their children, reconciled with neighbors, and centered around the life of the church.

Favor International is a movement training and equipping indigenous leaders for 18 years in East African war zones to sustainably change their communities with the power of the Gospel. Through community development and Portable Bibles Schools (PBSs), leadership training, and radio programming from our offices in Gulu, Uganda, and Juba, the capital of South Sudan, Favor exists to serve and mobilize God-empowered “discipleship factories” of indigenous leaders making disciples who make disciples.

 

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Community Revitalization Components We Add to Portable Bible Schools

Favor is passionate about planting churches. The Gospel lived in community is essential to reaching and transforming lives. One church planted in unreached communities can affect countless people.

The process begins as our Community Revitalization team strategically targets communities and villages with little to no Christian influence. Once sites have been selected, meetings are conducted with village leaders to obtain support and schedule a three-day evangelistic outreach. The outreach yields a new body of believers and an ongoing prayer community. Next, these new believers are engaged in training and discipleship through our two-month Portable Bible School. Potential leaders are identified and equipped to lead the new congregation and to train others as pastors and church planters.

Many communities in Uganda and South Sudan possess deep, unresolved emotional wounds. Favor’s trauma counseling focuses on people who have experienced highly stressful life events. Every person has a story of tragedy and fear. War has been a constant reality for numerous decades. 66,000 children in Northern Uganda alone were abducted and brainwashed into combatants and sexual slaves. Most people, in both countries, have had relatives murdered or maimed often right before their eyes. Many have been forced to kill or be killed. Due to the constant instability, millions of individuals were placed in camps, where many died due to horrific conditions. These experiences have left individuals with behavioral symptoms indicative of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Evangelism & Discipleship Meetingand has made reintegration into communities difficult. Their negative behavior and inability to contribute positively to the community in turn perpetuates an ongoing cycle of hurt, anger and retribution.

Our trauma program provides counselors who have intensive training to provide transformational care. Our program has two parts. The first section focuses on developing emotional strength, and the second teaches about forgiveness. Throughout the program counselors show people how to connect to one another and counter stress with positive activity. In addition, stories and sharing time help the participants understand pain and trauma from another perspective while giving them the opportunity to discuss the events they’ve experienced. Trauma counseling is important for these people to find healing, gain strength, and develop skills to become successful in life.

A mother’s greatest desire is for her children’s well-being and success. However, in rural Uganda and South Sudan many mothers struggle daily to make ends meet. Gender inequalities entrap the women, who are viewed as subservient to men, and girls are not sent to school. Tragic losses, easily preventable by simple education and medical care, punctuate the struggle to break free from this cycle of poverty. Favor’s Women’s Empowerment Program ends this cycle by equipping women to generate their own income through training in skills, emotional wholeness, parenting and financial management. This income gains them a measure of respect and independence from their husbands and funds the medical and educational needs of all their children.

Favor leadership teams select women who have demonstrated faithfulness through regular tithing and attendance at church and Community Revitalization sessions. Every empowerment meeting starts with individual and community goal setting. Through conversation, the team helps the women discover solutions uniquely suited to their circumstances. Based on interest, skills and resources the women may choose from a variety of vocational projects: artisan training in beads and textiles; cows and plows farming; animal husbandry involving poultry, pigs or goats; tailoring; bread making. Once decided, our team helps the women form their own structure and accountability system. The women leave these meetings with a solution in hand and joyful in the newfound knowledge of their God-given gifts.

Favor is passionate about building churches. The church becomes a central gathering place for the communities and is one of the most effective means of reaching and transforming lives. A physical building communicates that the Gospel is here to stay, helping communities rebuild around the physical and spiritual construction of a healthy church.

The entire community is involved in the construction process by providing labor, food for workers and available resources. When finished, the structure houses not only Sunday services and prayer meetings, but also serves as a community hub for ongoing teaching and training in literacy, health and economic development. Ongoing mentoring also takes place on location as our staff walks with the new faith community throughout the following year to guide and sustain the village’s continued development.

There is a tremendous need for reliable and applicable community health information in Uganda and South Sudan. Access to formal education is severely limited and illiteracy rates are extremely high. Therefore, what most westerners would consider common knowledge about disease processes, germ theory and basic hygiene principles is widely unknown. Community Health Education is a vital and integral part of the Rural Education and Empowerment Program. During the two-month Portable Bible Schools, daily classes are taught on recognizing certain disease symptoms, preventing illnesses, and treating common disorders. Care is taken to respect village folklore and tribal treatments while ensuring proper medical knowledge is learned in order to build a healthy and productive community.

Favor strongly believes that every child should have the opportunity to survive and thrive in education. The children in Uganda and South Sudan face tremendous barriers that include extreme poverty, limited resources, and a lack of safe water and transportation. Public education does not exist in these countries as families are required to pay for their children’s schooling. Even those children fortunate enough to attend school face a 100:1 teacher/student ratio. Additionally, early marriage is prevalent resulting in females having even less access to education. To address this desperate need, Favor International opened a primary school in 2008 that serves over 400 students. We maintain a 30:1 student to teacher ratio. Along with traditional academic studies the students are also instructed in the Bible and Christian living. Our school has been recognized for outstanding academic achievement by the Educational District. Although we take great pride in what has been accomplished, it is only the beginning.  We are continually striving to expand our educational programs. Uganda has the world’s youngest population- 78% are below the age of 30 and has one of the highest youth unemployment rates. The median age of the population in Uganda is 15.8 years. Our approach is to increase access to quality education by expanding and building new facilities including secondary schools.

Favor also has an adult literacy program as part of the two-month Portable Bible School. Many are motivated to learn to read using the Bible as their instructional guide. They improve their reading skills using God’s Word. Literacy is a key factor in alleviating poverty. We train and support these adult  students and see them  increase in productivity, innovation, and renewed hope for the future. Education combined with spiritual growth is a life and nation transforming event.

Mobile medical clinics are a practical extension of the Community Health Education program. Access to reliable medical diagnosis and treatment in urban areas is substandard and nonexistent in rural villages. Individuals will not be productive nor will communities thrive with unhealthy and diseased people. Favor’s goal is to bring dependable and professional medical access to established villages.

2020 Plan for Community Revitalization Expansion

In 2019, Favor implemented three waves of community revitalization in 30 villages each (20 in S. Sudan and 10 in Uganda, per wave, for an annual total of 90+ communities reached). In 2020, Favor plans to add trainers and equipment to provide revitalization to 120 communities by adding a fourth wave of 30 villages to the calendar. This expansion will be proportional, adding 20 additional communities in S. Sudan and 10 in Uganda. The budget includes staff, equipment, food, and transportation costs. We also purposely seek out Unengaged Unreached People Groups (UUPGs).

Allocation Monthly Total Results Cost Per Unit
50% $22,500 $270,000 30 Communities revitalized $9,000 per Community
15% $6,750 $81,000 70 Trainers trained and tooled $1,150 per Trainer
5% $2,250 $27,000 7 Motorbikes purchased $3,850 per Motorbike
30% $13,500 $162,000 1 S. Sudan Training Campus built N/A

Favor is raising the $540,000 outlined above to revitalize 30 additional communities with the Gospel, leadership, and education, plus permanently increasing our capacity to serve 120+ communities annually (we served 97 last year).

Will you help today?

Recent Community Revitalization Reports

A Word from Favor

“You want God to do the impossible? Put your feet into the impossibility, and watch God divide the water… You watch God do the supernatural, but go step on it. Go step on it.”

— Carole Ward

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