This is one of the poorest areas in the United States. The loss of jobs when the coal mines shut down, lack of medical care, substandard housing, and the isolation of the homes contribute to the problems faced by the people in this region. We provide funding for youth programs, toiletries, pantry items, sporting goods, clothing and other essential items. Volunteers work in the greenhouse, library, office and food pantry.
Spirit Journey’s mission is to help Native American youth in the Leelanau Peninsula by providing youth with opportunities to learn and practice respect and understanding for themselves and others, resulting in an increase in the commitment and courage of youth to live healthy lives in their community. Spirit Journey has developed a plan to provide the Youth with year round programming, along with summer and winter camps.
We collect, pack and ship clothing to the Overhome Missions Clothing Center in Sneedville, Tennessee, which is located in Hancock County, one of the poorest counties in the U.S. We have also begun contributing funds through the United Methodist Jubilee Water Project to help dig wells for people in the area. This is a continuous need, as there are more wells needed before all people will have running water.
This past year, we entered into a new relationship with the Methodist Church of Manzanillo, Cuba. This church will be one of our “sister congregations” and we will be sending a VIM teams to help renovate the church building. In addition, we will be assisting them financially to provide lunch to children on Sundays and helping them to update their audio equipment for their services.
We support the Methodist Church in the Czech Republic and a Christian Help Center just outside of Prague. The Center serves women and children in crisis situations and the Romy people. They provide housing for families for up to one year, social work, psychological services, and job training.
A port city approximately 150 miles west of Port au Prince, Jeremie did not suffer any earthquake damage in 2010, but became a refuge for those fleeing the capital city. Where it once was home to 20,000, it has now swelled to more than 500,000 with no infrastructure or employment to support such great numbers. Volunteers do construction at the Methodist church, the high school, the senior citizen home, and the medical/dental/ophthalmology clinic. Teams also venture into the nearby mountain villages to continue construction of schools and do mobile medical.
Birmingham First provides support for Kafakumba economic development in Ndola, Zambia, Africa with a mission to equip the people of Africa with an understanding of the principles of the Kingdom of God in order to transform their lives. We endeavor to assist in this self-sustaining ministry model of individual empowerment that can be transported anywhere in Africa. Through the Kafakumba Training Center we support a focus on ministry education providing spiritual and life skills training to student pastors, local women, youth and children. Several small businesses have begun such as woodworking, fish farming, and honey production.