Thursday, May 7
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National Day of Prayer / Older Adult Week
Niger is a semiarid, landlocked country that constantly struggles with food security. The population continues to grow by leaps and bounds, putting added stress on already limited resources. Over the past decade, the country has faced almost annual problems with malnutrition, especially among children. In response, the Evangelical Church of the Republic of Niger (EERN) has begun working with communities to address this problem.
With a small grant provided by Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, the EERN initiated a pilot project, building wells and community gardens. With access to wells, communities are able to extend the growing season from three short months to the entire year. While staple crops such as sorghum and millet can still only be grown during the June-to-August rainy season, a well allows communities to grow fruits and vegetables year-round.
The pilot nutrition project has especially focused on moringa, a tree that is common in much of Africa. Some people in Niger refer to moringa as the “miracle tree,” both because it can grow in the arid ground and because its edible leaves are a good source of protein, vitamins, and minerals. Along with the beans and peanuts that are already grown in Niger, moringa has the potential to wipe out malnutrition completely.
—Rev. Josh Heikkila, PC(USA) regional liaison for West Africa
Let us join in prayer for:
PC(USA) People in Mission
Evangelical Church of the Republic of Niger: Pastor Maiki Kadade, president, Pastor Iro Ibrahim, vice president,
Mr. Saidu Saley, secretary general
PC(USA) Agencies’ Staff
Let us pray
You are the source of living water, O Lord. We pray that wells dug in Niger will flow with life, that moringa trees will be nurtured, and that your children will be fed. Let the wilderness and dry lands be glad; may the desert blossom. Amen.