Every year World Day of Prayer supports a different country around the world. In 2020 the World Day of Prayer celebrations were hosted by Zimbabwe. We would like to thank the World Day of Prayer for their generosity in providing us with a grant to support this project in 2020.
In partnership with the World Day of Prayer, the Bible Society of Zimbabwe is running a project to support mothers of differently abled children. This project provides mothers from all walks of life with Scripture and support. Many of these ladies and their children, regardless of their social standing, have been rejected or mistreated by society. These ladies find it difficult to attend church and other social gatherings because of the stigma surrounding their children’s conditions. This project aims to empower mothers through the Gospel and show them they are loved and valued by their Creator, while also giving them practical tools to help cope with everyday family life.
This project mainly takes place through workshops and specialist training for mothers. There are also support groups where mothers can study the Bible together and hear testimonies from others who have raised children living with a disability. This project hopes to reduce the stigma and isolation surrounding the families of children living with a disability, whilst also highlighting the reality of disability in their communities.
Support is provided for children who may need disability aids or help with their education. Care is also provided for these children while their mothers attend workshops. Where needed there is a literacy element to this project to help children who struggle with dyslexia.
“The Bible is like my aunt because it helps me so much,” says Florence. “The Bible is a pillar of strength for me. When I am lost, it gives me direction. I can rely on the Bible. Even if I am troubled it gives me relief. When I read it rebukes me.”
Florence has been taking care of her granddaughter, Memory, ever since her daughter, Memory’s mother, abandoned her when she was a few months old. Caring for Memory is a costly and all-consuming job. Florence is unable to leave her alone, even for a moment. As a result, she is isolated. Florence and her husband are struggling to make ends meet, but she is grateful for a group of women from the World Day of Prayer committee, who visit her.
“Because I can’t go to church, I’m so grateful for the group,” she says. “They help me a lot when they come for a visit. We do Bible Study and it teaches me more about the Bible. That gives me comfort.”
Families with disabled children are often isolated, facing rejection by their communities, churches and wider family. The Bible Society of Zimbabwe’s World Day of Prayer project aims to bring support and hope to these families.
Header image: Shumirai, 45, reads the Bible with her six-year-old daughter, Maka, who has Down’s Syndrome, and her two other children. The family feels isolated due to rejection by the community and churches, and struggles to make ends meet as Shumirai cannot leave Maka and go out to work. The Bible Society of Zimbabwe and the local committee of the World Day of Prayer are joining together in this project to provide help and hope to families like Shumirai’s.