“I never imagined paying off my loan – ever,” said Hanif. “But when Barnabas Aid paid off my total amount of loan, I literally bowed down to my Saviour God thanking Him. For someone who is totally unknown to me had come to me and paid off my loan. This is a miracle for me and my family.”
Hanif, who is blind in one eye, had had to borrow money for a medical emergency. Like thousands of other Pakistani Christian brick-kiln workers in times of accident, illness or other crisis, he took a loan from the owner of the kiln where he worked.
But these debts keep the families bonded to their brick kiln, unable to leave and get another job, with money deducted from their wages to pay the interest. It is virtually impossible, out of their poverty, to pay off the debts. Despised, despairing and trapped, the bonded brick-kiln workers feel like slaves. But Barnabas Aid supporters have donated to set free Hanif and thousands of other Christians by paying off their debts.
“An angel who was sent by my great God”
“Barnabas Aid is an angel who was sent by my great God to poor brick-kiln people who are crushed under loans,” said Yousaf who had worried constantly how to repay his ever increasing loan. But Barnabas has paid it and also now provides free education for his children.
“I have no words in which to pay my thanks to God and Barnabas Aid,” continued Yousaf. “Now we are free.”
Answered prayers and growing faith
Farooq was getting paid only 500 rupees (£2, $2.25, €2.30) for making 1,000 bricks – a long and gruelling day’s work. That was little more than half what his wages would have been without deductions to pay the interest on his loan. “With that amount, I was not able to fulfill the essentials of my family,” said Farooq to our project partners on the ground who arrange the debt repayments. “I was very worried about that because our expenses were increasing day by day. Me and my family used to pray daily about getting rid of our loan. Then suddenly God gave me an answer through you guys.”
This answer to prayer was a great boost to Farooq spiritually. “I believe now I’m getting stronger and stronger in my faith every passing day,” he said.
Join us in phase 18 of our brick-kiln project
Thanks to the generosity of Barnabas supporters, and by God’s grace, we have already freed 1,475 Christian brick-kiln families, in 17 phases, since the project started in September 2017. Their debts ranged in size from approximately £170 ($200, €195) to £2,400 ($2,850, €2,745). Our project partners in Pakistan show them how to save regularly, so that they have money to fall back on next time there is a crisis. That way, they never have to get into debt again.
Thousands more of our brothers and sisters toiling in Pakistan’s brick kilns still need to be freed.
Your gift of any amount will help bring freedom, hope and a future to a faithful Christian family.
We can provide a photo of the family your gift has helped, with their names and ages, if requested.
“My family will always remember Barnabas Aid in our daily prayers,” said Hanif as he finished his testimony of God’s provision for his family through Barnabas. Please pray for him and the other Christian brick-kiln labourers: those still bonded and those now free.
And please give to set free another Christian family.