We need prayers to surround our latest ministry initiative, the Bright Future Savings Groups. There is a great need for financial and budget training that is adapted to the culture, language, and context of the Thai churches. When we first came to Thailand, 54% of farmers in Northeast Thailand owned their own land. Now only 15% own their farms and the effects have been devastating. Much of this was because they took out loans that they could not repay.
Bright Future Savings Groups meet each week for saving money together and to learn biblical teaching on finances and skills for family and small business finance. These groups have started in four churches so far as a pilot program. We have learned much about what needs to be adapted and tweaked to make the curriculum better suited to the Thai context so that this program can be highly effective and fruitful.
|Bright Future Savings Group at Blessing Home Isan|
|Bright Future Savings Group at Fire of Glory Church|
At this time, we are developing curriculum for training the leaders in the four churches concerning budgeting and how to handle family pressure to use emergency funds for non-emergency purposes. The curriculum and program needs to be designed to be usable by those who are illiterate or semi-literate, which is a great challenge. Please pray for us because we have a quick deadline to meet to put together these materials for the leader training.
We are very excited to see excitement on faces of the members of these groups. Many are saving money for the first time. Most have never had an emergency fund. Most have never used a budget. None have received personal finance training before. And they are very eager to learn more and to have victory in their family finances.
We also would like to announce the completion of the Blessing Home TaPhraya Center and Church. Pastors Det and Dao will lead the church there and missionaries Joshua and Jessica Johnston will oversee the Blessing Home ministry there. We will have a special dedication service when the Kentucky VIM team goes there to do an English camp in October.
|Pastor Banya and Joshua Johnston with the children of Blessing Home TaPhraya|
|Pastor Det picks up children to bring them to Blessing Home Ta Phraya.|