There’s no stopping Janak!
Story from Rukum under Integral Development
Thirty-six-year old Janak Kami from Pelma Village in Rukum East is an elder at Pelma Church. This village has 120 families with more than 70 households from the Dalit community. Located in a remote area, the village has no access to motorable roads and telecommunications.
UMN’s SEED* Project provided Sangasangai** training and developed local facilitators in nine churches, including Janak and another member of Pelma Church. After the training, Janak formed a Bible study group in the church and 22 members attended the classes regularly. He shared, “Studying the Bible is not new for me, but this training provided a new way of Bible learning and teaching using drawings, dram and more, which is also beneficial to those who cannot read and write.”
He explained that he has learned God’s mission and vision for the people living in his local community. He added, “The training has forced me to think about now God’s mission is to participate in the gospel and community work, care for the environment and other sectors of the community for a better world.”
Janak is now an active and passionate social worker. With his initiation, four damaged drinking water supplies in the village were repaired. He even mobilised the church members to work with the community in village cleaning work and to parquet a wooden floor in the school to protect the children from the cold.
Janak was recently appointed as the president of the School Management Committee at Shree Himalaya Basic School within the village. After being appreciated by the community, he didn’t stop there. He again took the initiative of installing a telephone connection for the village. On behalf of the ward office, he made an agreement with the regional telecommunication office located at Nepalgunj of Banke District. The telephone tower installation is almost complete, and the mobile network is in the process of being connected.
Janak has a vision to improve the community’s livelihood. He continues to pray that they can establish an apple processing machine and create market linkage for the community. Other pressing needs he sees are the scale-up of irrigation facilities in farmland and biodiversity conservation. His church has prepared an action plan for the environment which includes plantation, management of solid waste, conservation of the water sources, and sanitation awareness at both personal and community levels. He is thankful to the SEED Project for giving him a chance to attend the Sangsangai training. The training has been beneficial not only for him but for the good of the entire community.
- 46 local churches are involved in the Sangsangai process and out of them 27 churches are involved in community development work. 56 facilitators have been trained in the Sangsangai process.
- 35 households benefited from the maintenance and repair of four drinking water sources.
- 32 households benefited from the irrigation canal construction in Pelma village.
- The local government recently allocated NPR 500,000 (USD 3,813) to Pelma church after seeing their assistance in the community. Religious institutions often receive funds from their local government, but it is unusual for churches to be included.
* Sustainable Environment and Economic Development (SEED)
** This is a period of engaging faith-based institutions
with their local communities to demonstrate God’s love.