10 million Books of Hope to cover Africa this year.

By January 16, 2006

Africa (MNN) — Ignorance and mis-information are major factors in the spread of AIDS in Africa. Currently there are over 39 million children and youth who have HIV/AIDS, and that number is expected to continue to rise.

Something must be done, and Book of Hope’s Rob Hoskins says they’re combating the pandemic…with God’s Word. They’re planning to distribute more than 10 million Books of Hope to kids in 12 African nations this year, with hopes for even more next year.

Book of Hope is targeting the schools, with permission from governments to come in and distribute among school children, says Hoskins, “The key for us at Book Of Hope is concentrating on the next generation and not just working alongside the local churches that we work with to bring them hope for today in the midst of their pain and agony, but really to put the right information into their hands to stop this horrible pandemic from spreading and continuing. And the only way that will happen is if sexual behavior changes in those countries, and the only way sexual behavior will change is if there’s a heart change. And the heart change, of course, comes through the Gospel.”

It’s about impacting for the long-term, and impacting for life-change, says Hoskins, “There has to be a heart change for people to begin to live a life of abstinence or fidelity within marriage, and that comes through a lifestyle change and that’s what the Gospel is all about. So by us going into the public school systems around Africa, providing them the Good News, we do abstinence-based programs, but we also deliver the Word of God that says, ‘This is the way you must live,’ and with that lifestyle change comes purity, and with purity comes a new hope for Africa.”

Hoskins says the needs are huge, but “The doors are open; the opportunities are endless, and the children and youth are hungry to change. And so we just need a lot of prayer, (and) people to get involved with us to make sure that we can deliver this message to the continent.”

Three dollars not only provides three kids with a Book of Hope, but it also enables the national church to be involved in distribution and follow-up.

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