Feeding the neediest, transforming their futures
“We had no work and we were in fear about the pandemic,” said “Shahzad” recalling the terrible year 2020. He and his wife are agricultural labourers but when Covid came, at the same time as a serious drought in their part of Pakistan, they lost their work. With no income they sold their meagre possessions and cut back their meals to two a day. It was a worse situation than they had ever known before, until their pastor recommended them to our project partners for the feeding programme.
When the food packages started, the couple and their children could eat three times a day again. As the Covid and rainfall situations normalised, they were able to get work again and, because of the food parcels, even to save money.
A simple project, a profound impact
Wheat flour, rice, chickpeas, lentils, tea, cooking oil, salt and spices, plus a few hygiene items such as soap and toothpaste – these basic items can change the lives of impoverished Christians in Pakistan. Our project partners on the ground select the neediest Christian families and provide them with monthly food parcels containing items such as these. It is as simple as that.
But what a difference this makes! Now having a few rupees left over at the end of each month, the families begin to save up for things that can transform their lives.
Homes, health and hygiene
Some families use their savings to install a toilet in their home for the first time, making them feel much more secure, especially the women and children. Some use their savings for medical treatment which they otherwise could not afford.
For Shahzad, the first priority was to purchase two solar panels, a battery and an electric fan to cool their small and windowless home in the searing heat. Night temperatures where he lives do not fall below 27 °C at the moment, daytime temperatures can reach 45 °C or even higher.
“A ray of hope for me and my daughter”
Many widow-headed families are being fed. Explaining just how hard it is for widows in Pakistan, “Safia” said, “I experienced that it is so difficult for an unskilled and uneducated widow to survive … and especially if she is mother of daughters.” For Safia there was the added challenge of being a cancer patient, and needing to find money for her ongoing medication.
Safia’s daughter had to drop out of school when Safia could no longer afford to pay for her education, and now helps her mother in her various housemaid jobs in several different homes. But now, life is better. “I thank God for Barnabas Aid who started to help me through monthly food parcels,” says Safia. “This support was a ray of hope for me and my daughter.”
Will you feed them? Will you be their ray of hope?
Barnabas Aid is currently feeding 1,208 very poor Christian families in Pakistan, that is, about 6,000 Christians.
The typical cost of a monthly food parcel is just £20 ($27; €25).
Please help our suffering brothers and sisters in Pakistan.