By LAUREN BRETT BLACK, Student intern, American Family Radio
October 2013 – “Sometimes I just try and put pressure on it with my hands to try and make it less painful,” said Belony. These are real words from a real child living in real poverty. Belony is one of 400 million poverty-stricken children suffering from the effects of intestinal parasites contracted merely by drinking polluted water and playing in the same path where livestock loiter. Of this number, the severity of malnutrition and disease has led to four million cases per year ending in death. At night, 10-year-old Belony – living in the slums of Haiti – said she could feel something moving in her stomach. Her mother, Angelica, said this sickness had kept Belony up at night and out of school most days. And any nutrients from what little food she ate that day? Gone. That’s where World Concern came in.
World Concern is a Christian relief and development organization serving in over 17 countries across Africa and Asia. Since 1955, World Concern has sent volunteers and qualified professionals to work alongside the impoverished, aiding them in improving their means of life, meeting medical needs, educating them on the importance of sanitation and good hygiene, and supplying emergency relief in response to natural disasters. The organization also provides a solid image of the gospel to those in need.
Among those with medical needs were Belony and her brother Widlin. Their mother helplessly watched in horror as her children’s health deteriorated because she could not afford travel to the hospital. Can you imagine the joy on her face when World Concern showed up with their 44 Cent Cure? The 44 Cent Cure is a chewable dose of the anti-parasitic medication Membendazole. Each dose includes a Vitamin A supplement to prevent or stop the progression of blindness caused by the deprivation of natural Vitamin A. Angelica and the World Concern team watched in excitement as Belony chewed up the little white pill, knowing her future would be a little brighter.
Earlier this year, World Concern teamed up with AFA and AFR in a campaign promoting the 44 Cent Cure. With just over 3,650 donations and a total of $259,909 raised, Cathy Herholdt, communications officer with World Concern, said, “The campaign was hugely successful! People really responded. We are so humbled and thrilled by the generosity of AFR listeners! Incredibly grateful.”
Continuing the thought, J.J. Jasper of American Family Radio said, “I was impressed, along with the rest of our staff, with how we exceeded the goal of World Concern regarding the 44 Cent Cure campaign. I was impressed but not surprised. Our listeners are incredible! When there is a need they always rise to the occasion.”
“But whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (John 4:14).
World Concern has provided anti-parasitic Membendazole tablets to over 6.5 million children in 8 countries. Yet, millions of children continue to be plagued with this horrific illness. A monthly gift of $44 can change the lives of 100 children, providing not only clean water and medicine for the body, but also quenching the thirst and providing medicine for the soul.
Find more information at:
World Concern Headquarters
Fremont Avenue North
Seattle, WA 98133