Learn & Serve: Birmingham Youth Support SIFAT Training Graduate in Nigeria!

Pastor Ogbatabo is a pseudonym for one of our SIFAT graduates and trainers in Nigeria. Because of his work in a violent area, we want to protect his identity for his safety. Pastor Ogbatabo submitted a proposal to SIFAT, which was approved as a SIFAT international project. 

SIFAT’s Learn & Serve department pledged to help Pastor Ogbatabo fund his project through educating North American youth on the issue of smoke inhalation around the world and allowing them the chance to partner with SIFAT through financial contributions.  Several L&S staff members and leaders from various participating groups have contributed.  One inspiring story of a group committing to fund Pastor Ogbatabo’s project comes from Canterbury United Methodist Church of Birmingham, Alabama.

When students from Canterbury UMC met Pastor Ogbatabo while at SIFAT during Summer 2013, they decided they wanted to sponsor his project in Nigeria. After telling their friends and parents about Pastor Ogbatabo and his work, they decided to take up an offering once a month at their Sunday night youth program.

Canterbury UMC students keep a tally of the amount raised each month on their prayer (chalkboard) wall in a drawing of the rocket stove.

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International Project Update: Pastor Ogbatabo’s Cookstove Training in Nigeria

Pastor Ogbatabo is a pseudonym for one of our SIFAT graduates and trainers in Nigeria. Because of his work in a violent area, we want to protect his identity for his safety. Pastor Ogbatabo submitted a proposal to SIFAT, which was approved as a SIFAT international project. 

Pastor Ogbatabo and participants from the fuel efficient cookstove training that took place in Nigeria during September 2013.

Pastor Ogbatabo, one of SIFAT’s International Practicum graduates, is currently holding trainings in Nigeria to educate community leaders on the importance of fuel efficient cookstoves and water purification.  Pastor Ogbatabo will be holding six trainings during the next year to train about 360 people in making fuel-efficient cookstoves. These stoves not only help the environment by using less firewood, but also improve air quality in the kitchen and help girls go to school—the girls are usually given the task of gathering firewood, often spending most of the day walking to collect wood and keep the fire going.
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Alumni Update: Dea Lieu of the Ivory Coast passes away

This is one of our favorite pictures of Dea Lieu (left) from his time at SIFAT.

We are very sad to bring you news of the death of one of our beloved partners in ministry, SIFAT graduate Dea Lieu. He died in the hospital on the morning of November 20 of an infection in his lungs. We do not have details at this time, but we do ask for your prayers for his wife Charlotte, and their children, Desire’-Michel, Louis, Fabien, Vistorian and Armande and for his co-workers in mission in their war ravaged country, Cote D’Ivoire, or the Ivory Coast in English.

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Happy New Year! Constance, one of our 2008 Practicum graduates, has recovered from a successful surgery and is now back home with her family. She arrived in Nigeria on New Year’s Day. In her e-mail to us, she excitedly told of reuniting with her family at Sunday morning worship on Jan. 3. During January, she will be joining her church family in prayer and fasting as she seeks how God wants her to implement the training she received at SIFAT into her work with women and girls.
Thank you for all of the prayers and support for Constance during her doctor visits and sugery. If you missed reading about Constance’s Christmas miracle, you can find it in the Nov./Dec. 2008 Journal.

Don’t forget, you can always access both present and past Journals on the news page!

Josie Alcantara, a 2006 graduate from the Philippines, held a training seminar on chocolate molding production and packaging to Globe McKay-Sheraton Village homeowners on June 13, 2007. Chocolate molding production is a microenterprise livelihood program of the low-income homeowners in this community. SIFAT Philippines, the Living for Jesus Ministries and the support of homeowners’ association president Willie Ibarreta made this training possible.

The goal of the training is to help women cope with the increasingly numerous responsibilities they face in everyday socioeconomic life. This microenterprise helps develop supplemental income, so the women are able to buy more nutritional food for their families and help provide for their children’s educational needs.

The project engaged the women in income generating activities. Since the homeowners are already an organized group, the SIFAT alumni are now assisting them to become self-governing and become independent from the project.

Ten housewives and 10 high school and college students attended the training and learned about basic and advanced chocolate molding, which are ideal for business all year for occasions such as birthdays, Valentine’s Day, Easter Sunday, Halloween, Christmas or as desserts. Marketing strategies are simply giving samples for tasting and showing pictures of the finished products neatly and attractively packaged with a price list on it. Josie emphasized the “three P’s”:  people, place and price in making the product cost. The ordered products should be delivered on time and following the specifications of the customers.

Josie Alcantara holds a Bachelor of Science in business administration and is certificated in hotel and restaurant management. She is a resource speaker giving lectures and hands-on training for culinary and food technology.