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10 Reasons to Give Thanks Around the World

As followers of Jesus, we are called to be people of hope — to “know the hope to which [Jesus] has called [us]” (Eph. 1:18) and to “hold unswervingly” to it (Heb. 10:23). How, then, can we cultivate and embody hope even in the midst of the world’s suffering? 

According to some experts, the answer is simple: gratitude. 

Gratitude is one of the strongest predictors of hopefulness, and it’s scriptural. Giving thanks in all circumstances helps draw our focus back to Jesus and his past, present and future faithfulness — not ignoring suffering, but seeing it in light of a God who has promised to transform ashes to beauty and wipe away every tear

Today, we invite you to join our staff around the world in giving thanks for how God is still working to transform lives and communities through the local church. Will you cultivate hope with us?

1. Burundi

“We are thankful that, with God’s help, we have equipped and mobilized 60 local churches in Nyarusange district to serve their communities, including providing support to 30 people considered to be most vulnerable because they are living with disabilities, orphaned or widowed. 

“Churches also distributed 30 chickens to 144 households. The chickens will be able to multiply and provide eggs for eating and selling. Our church network in Nyarusange was even ranked at the provincial level as the number three most active and committed network caring for the most vulnerable!”  — Cesalie Nicimpaye, World Relief Burundi Country Director

2. Cambodia

“We are grateful for 53 Kids’ Clubs with over 1,000 children graduating after finishing our 41-week curriculum focused on developing healthy relationships with God, others and self. We appreciate the 100+ volunteers and church and community leaders who supported this. Moreover, we keep praising God for helping our Savings for Life program members grow their savings and improve their financial well-being.” — Romroth Chuon, World Relief Cambodia Program Operations Director

3. DR Congo

“I am most grateful for the field office staff God has called to be part of World Relief DRC. They are beyond dedicated to serving the people of DR Congo and creating change in their country. With grit and prayer, they have pushed through seemingly insurmountable challenges. 

“This year, we reached nearly 165,000 individuals with valuable food security resources, we started a new Families for Life program to rebuild marriage relationships through the local church, and we grew our new Church Empowerment Zone in Ituri Province despite security challenges. Numbers alone do not do the DRC program justice — it is the people, the team, who are the measure of  success.” — Amanda Patterson, Program Officer, Humanitarian and Disaster Response Unit in DR Congo and South Sudan

4. Haiti

We are grateful to God for the 440 new youth who joined the second year of the agri-business project in the southeast region of Haiti. We are also grateful to have 105 direct beneficiaries of our housing project, implemented in partnership with Habitat for Humanity in response to those affected by the earthquake on August 14, 2021 in Les Cayes.” — Pascal Bimenyimana, World Relief Haiti Country Director

5. Kenya

“We are grateful that God has blessed Kenya to partner with 489 churches engaging 5,305 volunteers to share on reproductive and sexual-health related messages to 157,271 families in three counties.” — Nancy Owola, World Relief Kenya Monitoring and Evaluation Manager

6. Malawi

“I thank God for what we have managed to accomplish this year, especially through our Families for Life program, which helps strengthen marriages and give families the tools they need to thrive. This year, we have transformed 19,424 couples in our five Church Empowerment Zones! We are celebrating and thanking God for these transformations because we believe that if we transform a couple — if we transform a family — we are going to transform a local church, and the local church is going to transform the community. If the community is transformed, then we are going to transform Malawi.” — Jane Lumanga, Former World Relief Malawi Director of Programs

7. Rwanda

“Through our Savings for Life program, we are grateful to have reached 9,479 community members through 390 new saving groups14 of which are digital — with financial inclusion resources and training in key economic development modules such as Financial Literacy and Business Development, Smart Spending and Deciding Together. This is impacting close to 40,000 vulnerable people across the program area — thank you, God!” – Michael Ntambara, World Relief Rwanda Impact and Quality Director

8. South Sudan

“In South Sudan, we’re thankful to God for the work of our SCOPE Health Promoters and local church partners. Together, we have assisted 10,568 children under five with immunizations and treatments for malaria, diarrhea and pneumonia. We have also helped refer 3,213 mothers to health facilities for maternal services. But my favorite is the number of babies delivered with support from our health promoters — 601 new babies! We pray that by God’s grace, these babies will grow up to have a good life in South Sudan.” — Hillary Muni, World Relief South Sudan Area Coordinator

9. Sudan

“We are thankful to God for uniquely granting World Relief Sudan with wisdom to provide solutions for water shortages in the Jabel Marra region through the construction of six check dams. This year, the dams have harnessed enough water for domestic use in over 35,000 households, as well as for fruit farming.

“We are also thankful that God has enabled us to distribute 58,355 metric tons of food to 430,000 Internally Displaced People (IDP) and returnees across three Sudanese states in Sudan, and provide primary health care services to 459,748 IDPs, returnees and host community members in the Darfur region.” — Stephen Gatimu, World Relief Sudan Program Director

10. U.S.

“We are grateful that God has raised up 873 churches and 8,430 volunteers this year to help us welcome refugees and immigrants across the U.S. — whether Afghans escaping the Taliban, Ukrainians fleeing war or individuals and families from around the world looking for safety and an opportunity to thrive. We are especially thankful that 1,600 individuals have been reunited with family members, many after enduring long separations from spouses, children, parents and siblings.” — Mandy Barb, Senior Director of U.S. Programs

Join us in giving more people more reasons to give thanks this holiday season. 

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