Pilot Rembrand Rodenburg had the chance to find out more about the work of Restoring Hope Ministries on a recent shuttle flight from Uganda to Buni, DRC.
Restoring Hope Ministries work in Dungu, DRC, regarded as a safe haven because of the presence of UN. As a consequence refugees have settled there in the past year. Refugees from both South Sudan and from DRC/CAR moved to Dungu due to the increased unsafety after the withdrawal of the Ugandan and American troops in that region where they were searching for LRA’s leader, Joseph Kony.
Restoring Hope Ministries (RHM) began with a boy named Bagudekia Alobeyo. In December 2008, Bagu’s village had been attacked by The Lord’s Resistance Army, a militia led by warlord Joseph Kony. The fighters left a trail of devastation in their path. Bagu shared his family’s story and asked members of Cornerstone Church to help. When Cornerstone leaders learned of the international crisis in Eastern DRC, they responded by firstly praying. They then provided emergency help for Bagu’s family. After addressing the immediate needs they developed relationships with local Congolese pastors to listen and learn how to come alongside them in ways that would be sustaining and empowering. The pastors revealed needs that led to the establishment of Restoring Hope Ministries.
RHM’s ministry is holistic with a 3 pronged approach.Through church-to-church partnership and also partnership with MAF, RHM restore through biblical trauma healing; they train through post-secondary education, particularly counselling, pastoral, and business/vocational training; and they sustain through the development of micro-enterprise and sustainable solutions.
RHM’s first training sessions will start in January. They’ve just finished building the support house for their mission and have trained a few team members in technical skills to build water filtering systems.