Nurturing Hope in Burundi
Nurturing Hope in Burundi

Nurturing Hope in Burundi

In my life, I have seen time and again that the rich have hope, the poor have faith, and together we can produce love.

This past week we were busy nurturing hope among 400 young adults (aged 18-35) in Burundi.  The hope planting began last year, when we started a five-year plan to develop entrepreneurship through young adults from twelve churches in four different cities in Burundi.  These young adults have been on a path for 15 months so far.  Last year, they learned about the God of business and about a healthy theology of work.  Then they went through DML’s basic business training.  This year, they started with mentoring and working on their business plan.

And this past week, because of the generosity of many of you, we were able to bring these young adults together, under one roof, for six days of singing, praying, laughing, playing, and learning.  It was an amazing time.  There was so much energy!  

DML Burundi Trainers, Speakers and Guests

Our goal was to provide inspiration for these young adults.  Inspiration to work as worship.  Inspiration to see themselves as co-creators with God.  Inspiration to be job makers, not just job seekers.  Inspiration to think outside the box.  Inspiration to create wealth in God’s way and to manage wealth in God’s way.  Inspiration to break strongholds that say “I can’t” or “I have nothing” or even “I am nothing.”  Inspiration to break the bondage of poverty and develop a vision future.

And from everything we heard from those gathered, that mission was accomplished.  

These were some of the testimonies from a few of these young adults:

  • From a young man:  I had a farm where I was growing sweet potatoes.  In thinking creatively about my work, I decided to start making flour from the sweet potatoes.  Now I’m making donuts from that flour. It is seen as an innovative product and people love the taste, so many are coming to buy.  Demand is high!  
  • From a young woman:  I felt I had no future before going through DML. But after the training, I started to think about what I could do for myself. I started working as a home servant and began to save, as that is something we had been taught in DML.  I have been saving money to buy a sewing machine and will have enough money to do so in a few months. I have saved 500,000 Burundian francs (about $174). I want to be a job maker and not just a job seeker! I know have a vision for the future! This message was so important for me to hear, and it needs to go out to all youth! 
  • From a young man, who is also a DML trainer:  I was trained by DML in 2021.  I thought that I was going to a conference to learn about evangelism, but rather found myself in a conference about development.  But I learned that evangelism and development can go hand in hand!  At the time I went through the training, I was working for the government.  I even had a car that I could use from that position.  But because of this training, I realized that I could go into business for myself and be a job maker.  I began to develop my vision.  I then left my government job and people thought I was crazy.  But I have been blessed to be able to buy many hectares of land for cultivation and the business has grown.  I currently employ 17 people and this September I will expand again and hope to have thirty employees.  I am so happy to get up and go to work every day, and I love doing discipleship with my employees!  I thank God for the chance to learn about work as worship – it has brought me much more joy every day!

Today (Monday), I begin the trip from Burundi to Cameroon, where DML is engaged in the launching of BAM Cameroon.  We pray that seeds of networking and collaboration amongst key institutions may result in fruit that will be for the flourishing of this country and its people!  Please pray along with us!