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    Monday, January 14, 2013

    Sojourn: Day Fourteen

    Today, I am going to highlight a ministry I just found out about called Hope 4 Africa.  My brother's friend Paul Armitage began this non-prfit organization with a passion to see the African people prosper.  I could speak to it, but I decided to interview him about this ministry.  It goes hand in hand with helping the poor folks there get more to eat, which I am trying to highlight.

      Before the interview, let me just say I am very hungry today and temptation to "snack" has been very much increased.  Not sure why the increase but it's definitely there.  I weighed in at 196.5 again, marking this being the only day so far I have not lost weight since I began.  Please read the interview and prayerfully consider how you can help!  Tomorrow, I will highlight Grain of Hope as well as share more of my journey with you!

    1. What sparked your heart to be apart of Hope 4 Africa? 

    A series of trips to Africa with high school students, I read a book called "Banker to the Poor". I began intrigued with how micro-finance was being used in developing countries to help lift people out of the nasty grip of poverty. I felt God calling me to be a part of a sustaining work that would really empower people and not just do hand-outs. Following my reading of this book, and a series of miracles, I was put in touch with an African who had a desire to help. We started with $1,000 and loaned in to 29 women in a remote village in Burkina FAso. All 29 loans were returned. This was the start of the adventure and would eventually lead to the birth of our non-profit, Hope 4 Africa.

    2. What is the hardest thing about what you do there?

    The most difficult thing of what we do is sifting through so many desperate needs and focusing on who God calls us to help with the resources that He has given us. We can't do it all...but we can do some!

    3. How does Hope 4 Africa give the loans and what is involved with getting people apart of the project (Africans that is) 

    Hope 4 Africa has staff on the ground in AFrica that help with the screening of applicants. When a person shows that they have a plan to have a sustainable income, they then qualify for a loan. We give loans ranging from $30 - $160. We give loans that help people establish businesses and help create an income which ultimately provide for their family and enables their kids to go to school. The people that receive the loans in a respective village meet for training with our loan officer. We also partner with a local church which helps in the screening of people and encouraging the borrowers to pray back in a timely manner. Hope 4 Africa has a 100% repayment rate.

    4. How do you through Hope 4 Africa share the gospel?

    Every borrower hears the Gospel through our loan officer. We work in areas where people are either muslim, annimistic, or Christian. Most are muslim. In addition to sharing one on one, we also share the love of Christ through our training sessions. We also go into villages where we are already doing a work and we show the JESUS film. MAny have trusted Christ through this. We always work alongside a Hope 4 Africa partner church and their pastor and / or elders.

     In addition to being on Facebook, our website is www.givehope4africa.com