Clement and his 'nearly ready' shop in which he will buy farmer's goods and sell on at market prices
Clement and his ‘nearly ready’ shop in which he will buy farmer’s goods and sell on at market prices

On Friday we met Clement, who is one of the Church and Community Resource Pastors (CCRP), and he was keen to tell us how PEP had transformed his life. He went through the camps in the civil war, a time of great insecurity. He indicated that they had got used to a life of handouts from e.g. The Red Cross, and got used to a life of dependency. This then closed the mind to other possibilities, or the opportunities of drawing upon one’s own resources. Even when resettled in the villages, an attitude of dependency still prevailed, but PEP changed attitudes.

In the Bible study resourcing sessions, there was evidence that God had already given many resources for our needs, and the villagers started forming groups of 5-10 to meet the needs that the villagers determined that they had. One interesting aspiration was that the community would no longer have to offer plastic plates to guests, and that breakable plates were purchased (we know they achieved this, we used them for lunch!)

Clement now feels proud of their independence, that they are no longer dependent on others. Previously he would have been full of self-defeating thoughts, but the villagers can now see their own potential. The process has given knowledge and the ability to stand alone. They say that some NGO’s provide the fish, and some provide the hook with which to catch the fish – PEP provides the hook, and offers a more sustainable and aspirational lifestyle.

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