At the recent National Social Services Conference (NSSC), more than $20,300 was given for the Integrated Community Empowerment Program in the India South East Territory which is positively impacting the economic, social, educational and spiritual health of more than 5,500 families.
Program participants, most of whom are women, meet together regularly in self-help groups where they are given opportunities for saving money, taking out small loans in order to start businesses, practicing accountability, learning new skills and, in turn, improving their personal financial situations. Many members now have a more consistent form of income, are able to afford school fees for their children and have hope for a brighter future. Some also testify to entering into a relationship with Jesus Christ because of their participation in the program.
During a united session at the conference, NSSC delegates were inspired by Commissioner Heidi Bailey, who dressed in a sari related a first-hand account of visiting the programs. Delegates gave funds throughout the conference through DipJar, kettles and text to donate, totaling $5,342.88, which was matched by $5,000 each from the Kansas and Western Missouri Division, the Central Territory and National Headquarters.