Expanding in Swaziland

Rachel Chimits

The gospel is spreading through Africa’s smallest country in new and innovative ways.

Eswatini, which was known as Swaziland until its king changed the name last year, is a country in southern Africa about the size of Massachusetts andwhere many of its people live in poverty and fear of HIV.  

Frustration with the lack of improvements promised by Eswatini’s government has mounted in recent years. World Challenge’s partners, however, have put their hope for change in God’s work in their neighbors’ hearts and outlook on life.

In the northern highlands, the team was already running a children’s home and farm, but they were looking for a way to increase their blessings on the community.

The Beginning of a Vision

Two years ago, they started praying for an opportunity to expand their men’s training center. They had one in Emafini, but it was divided between trying to provide Bible school training and some practical skills for the students. Their dream was to increase capacity and to equip the students with a wider variety of life skills than the Emafini center had capacity for. 

Their Hawane Farm, half an hour drive into the northern highlands, seemed the obvious solution. 

The team leaders hoped to alleviate poverty by sending agriculturally trained pastors into the most impoverished rural areas of their nation.

In addition, agricultural training for the students would provide extra food for students at the Men’s Centre, the Women’s Centre and the children in homes at Hawane and Bulembu.  

Not only that, but by creating an agricultural training center in Hawane that could help support the church’s other enterprises, their Emafini site could fully dedicate itself to being a scholarly training facility for pastors.

A Dream Realized

The team prayed and carefully laid out plans, taking stock of the renovations they would need to make the Hawane Farm into an agricultural school that could accommodate students living at the center.

The only barrier left was significant, though. They didn’t have the funds. 

Then came an email from World Challenge, asking if they needed a donation and offering the exact amount they needed to fulfil the task. God had provided precisely what they needed to realize their dream for the new school.

After many months of overhaul, the buildings and the gardens at Hawane Farm are now ready to accommodate the new pastors. The church’s men’s center is moving to Hawane!