Chad (MNN) — As conflict appears to be easing in Chad, missionaries are gradually reentering the country.
In most areas, however, there are not adequate schools for missionary families' children to go to school. Often times, missionaries must send their children to French school or home school them, but many are uncomfortable with both these options.
"The challenge is that there is about 70 people groups in Chad who are not reached, and the families are more likely to come to Chad and minister if there is an education option for their kids," said Debbie Weissenburg of African Inland Mission. Without schools for their children, many missionaries will not even come to Chad, or they will leave after they do not find a solution.
AIM wants to change this for families living near the capital city of N'Djamena.
Weissenburg said, starting next August, they will be opening the Well Spring Academy day school. Initially, the school will accommodate K-6 grades, but eventually they would like to see it extend through high school.
When the school first opens, Weissenburg will be the teacher for grades 4-6, and another woman will teach K-3rd.
For families who are forced to homeschool their children due to living far from the capital, Weissenburg said they hope to have specialized weeks, annual testing and other resources for these children as they come into the city with their families for supplies.
A long-term goal is to eventually turn the school into a boarding school, which will allow children far away from the city to stay and get their education.
However, before any of this takes place, AIM needs to get the school up and running.
They must overcome several challenges first.
"The fact that Chad is a landlocked country adds quite a bit of challenge because everything has to be imported, and [it limits] what does come into the country," Weissenburg said. "Obtaining supplies and definitely getting even furniture built with very little wood there in the desert is going to be a challenge to get the whole thing up and running."
In addition to these resources, Weissenburg and AIM are searching for the best curriculum to use with the missionary children. Already,they have families from England, the United States, Korea and Germany, and finding a curriculum to fit the needs of all these children could prove to be a challenge.
However, overcoming these hurdles will enable missionaries to reach more Chadians with Christ's love.
"In families in general, the education of their children is such a high priority. By giving them the foundation and the facility, a place where their children can get an education, they can then focus on ministering to the people of Chad," Weissenburg said.
Pray for Weissenburg and the rest of the AIM staff involved in this project. Pray that they will be able to overcome the obstacles of funding and resources, and also have the wisdom to choose the best curriculum for all of the children.
Pray for God to bring more families to Chad as they see that their children will receive a proper education. Also, pray for the missionaries already there to be bold in their witness to the many Chadians who have yet to hear the message of Christ.
Click here to help AIM with this project by providing for their financial needs.