This month marks 20 years since World Compassion has officially been working in Iraq. We are forever thankful for partners like you who have generously and consistently stood with us over these years!
We just returned from several days in the Middle East visiting some of the ministry programs World Compassion has in the region.
While in Iraq, I was reinvigorated to meet some of the people whose lives have been completely transformed.
One young Yazidi lady – we will call her Sarah – recently completed our cosmetology training program in a refugee camp in northern Iraq. She is just one of hundreds of ladies that are waiting to go through the program this year.
Sarah is in her early twenties, and her family has lived in a tent and now a small container for the past 10 years. Still a decade after their lives were completely interrupted and uprooted, losing everything they have ever worked for, they continue to struggle to find a pathway forward in life.
Sarah heard about the World Compassion skills training programs and enrolled. Over the past several months, teams from the local church World Compassion partners with to facilitate these programs have built a relationship with Sarah through the training.
As a result, Sarah has now given her life to Jesus! She is growing in her walk with the Lord while being discipled by several ladies from the local church. The consistent partnership of people like you makes this possible.
She shared how she was saving money to buy more supplies to offer better services. She’s smart! We talked about how she could partner with another woman from the sewing program for her to sell the clothes that lady makes in her salon and how that would help both of their businesses. Just this one moment of strategizing together showed the joy of the new life she has found!
Then, as we were about to leave, Sarah asked me if I would pray over her business. This was a moment I knew we were witnessing a life transformed through the love of Jesus!
For her, as a new believer, to have the spiritual maturity to ask for us to pray over her business meant she already understands the goodness of God. She knows He has plans for her, to give her a future, to give her life and life more abundant. She was filled with hope for the future! You can agree with us that her business will prosper!
What impressed me so much about Sarah was the zeal for life she found again in Jesus. She’s already started her own salon business in the middle of the camp and was ecstatic to show us!
As we walked into a small room, we could see the beginnings of a new business: one single chair, a desk, a mirror, a few bottles of nail polish, a hair dryer, some brushes, and a pair of scissors. It wasn’t much by western standards, but it was a start!
We all know salons are often where ladies talk and share about their lives. So, what’s even more exciting is to think about all the ladies that will come through her salon, giving her an open door to share her testimony and the Gospel with other women from the camp. And Sarah is not the only lady who has started their own business in this camp either.
The light of Christ being shared in our programs now has the potential to be multiplied through the businesses of former students who have given their lives to Jesus!
Imagine the impact these ladies can begin to have. How many other ladies’ lives can they touch? How many homes will this impact?
Mina is another young woman we met. She is 25 and has lived in this camp for the past ten years. She was just fifteen years old when her family had to flee their home. Just months after arriving in the camp, her parents arranged for her to be married. Today, she has three children.
While I was listening to her story, she told me she enrolled in these training courses just to give her a reason to leave her tent and walk to the other side of the camp. For this to be her motivation tells you how low she was emotionally and mentally.
Mina told us the more she began coming to the classes, the more she began to realize how light and free the room felt. She shared how the teacher had so much happiness and how she just wanted to be around her.
As Mina continued sharing, I looked across the room at Hana (the teacher from our local church partner) and saw tears streaming down her face. In that moment, I believe Hana was filled with such joy and fulfillment she couldn’t contain it. It was as if God just showed her her purpose right before our eyes!
Mina has not given her life to Jesus yet, but we believe she is close. Please be praying for her heart to be open to the Holy Spirit.
This one refugee camp is home to about 65,000 people. There are several more with hundreds of thousands of people, all living in tents or small containers, left to rebuild their lives and often rejected by surrounding communities. Together, the opportunity remains to help reach them.
Though the world has forgotten about these people, God has not and neither can we. It’s the simple lesson of the Good Samaritan: we can’t just walk by and do nothing about it.
We want to expand the number of people we can help reach in these refugee camps. With your support, we can transform more lives for people like Sarah who are trying to find a new pathway forward in life but just need help from people like you and me.
I’m inviting you to continue joining us in changing the lives of people in the country of Iraq. Your giving is what makes life changing stories like Sarah and Mina’s possible.
These are just two stories, but there are thousands of more lives waiting to be changed!
Your giving is what makes life changing stories like Sarah & Mina’s possible.
It costs $130 (£109) to sponsor one lady to go through the training. This covers the cost of the teachers, transportation, materials, and a gift for the ladies when they complete the course.
We’re eliminating the lid of how many people we can reach. We just need your help to get to as many ladies as possible.
How many refugee women could you help provide a life changing opportunity to? A gift of $260 (£218) reaches two ladies, $650 (£545) reaches five, and $1,300 (£1,090) reaches 10.
When you give, you’re sowing seed into what God is doing in the Middle East. You’re empowering the local church in Iraq, and you’re giving the ladies, their children, and their children’s children hope for the future.
Women are extremely influential in the lives of their children as they raise them. Your gift could impact the next generation just as much as these women.
This is what we can be a part of together! Think of all the ladies we can reach for just $130 (£109) each!
Pray and ask the Lord what He might have you give in this season to see lives transformed and rebuilt to the glory of God in the Middle East.
Thank you for remembering these people still living in refugee camps after all this time!
YES! I WANT TO BRING LIFE-CHANGING TRANSFORMATION TO MORE PEOPLE IN IRAQ AND IRAN!
This helps us so much when making plans and budgeting projects around the world.
Example: $25 (£20)/month would reach 3 people with the Gospel in Iran. $100 (£82)/month would train two leaders in China or Myanmar through our ABC Bible Training Material.
Next month we’re excited to share stories about people’s lives being changed in Iran. We’ll also be sharing more about what happened at our Iran leadership conference. In the meantime, if you want to help us continue sending Bibles into Iran you can do that as well through the envelope enclosed. People are coming to know Christ by reading these! It costs $9 (£8) to put a Bible into someone’s hand inside Iran. We currently have around 120,000 Bibles ready to go and are believing God for nearly $1.1 million (£960,000) this year to reach that many people or more with Bibles in Iran! This is not possible without you! Let’s continue to rally together and reach 120,000 people with the Gospel in Iran!”