Rebuilding Hope and Home
The 2016 Humanitarian Needs Overview (HNO) reports 14.8 million people have been affected by the Boko Haram violence in Northeast Nigeria. Around 2.2 million people were still displaced; living as Internally Displaced Persons (IDP’S) or as refugees in Cameroon, Niger or Chad. Only about 8% of the IDP’s are in Nigerian government run camps or settlements, and the Nigerian authorities only provide aid to these camps. The rest of the displaced are living with family and friends or being supporting by church programs like this Nigeria Crisis Response or some of the limited number of NGOs in the area.
There are many concerns for the displaced families with the biggest issue being access to food. The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) estimates 2.5 million children are malnourished. It is very difficult for IDP’s to grow any food or have any way of earning a living. Other major issues include drinking water, waste sanitation, and violence against women (gender-based violence). Many people have returned home to find churches, businesses and homes destroyed. More than 4000 widows have been identified. Many children have been out of school for years. The returnees live under the continual threat of suicide bombings, attacks on farmers and night raids on towns. Three states remain in a “State of Emergency” and the terror of a Boko Haram attack still looms over this large area in Northeast Nigeria.
Nigeria Crisis Relief and Recovery
The response of the US Church has been amazing, supporting a more than five million response program. Over 5.4 million dollars have been raised. The crisis response has saved lives, helped avert starvation and supported the Nigerian people through this horrific time. Even with this progress, the journey to recovery is still long and our support is desperately needed to help families and the church recover. We have helped thousands of families, but the need is still incredible.
The determination, resiliency and faith of the Nigeria families is courageous and inspiring. Even in the midst of continued violence and bombing by the extremist group Boko Haram (Listed in the top five deadliest terrorist group 2014- 2017) families from Ekklesiyar Yan’uwa a Nigeria (EYN, Church of the Brethren in Nigeria) and their neighbors have started the long journey to recovery and return of self-sufficiency. In the last several years, nearly 70 percent of the EYN church buildings were lost (1,668 churches burned or abandoned), the EYN headquarters were overrun, more than 11,000 EYN members have been killed, thousands have been kidnapped including the Chibok girls, and hundreds of thousands are still displaced. Even though security has improved, millions of both Christian and Muslim families are impacted and terrorized by this crisis (more crisis details).
70% of those displaced have returned home. The Nigeria Crisis Response is providing resources and tools so they can support themselves, grow their crops and restart their lives. EYN congregations are starting to rebuild by worshiping next to the ruins of their beloved church building. With our support, repairs have been completed at EYN headquarters in Kwarhi, Kulp Bible College is holding classes and the Comprehensive Secondary School has reopened. With so much accomplished the Nigeria people and EYN families continually share their deep gratitude.
Working in partnership with EYN and other Nigerian non-profit organizations, the major relief and recovery program provides emergency food and supplies; drinking water; education for children; trauma recovery and peace building for all ages; seeds and fertilizer for agriculture; tools and resources for making a living; repair of damaged homes; and support of the Church leadership. Learn more
Nigerian Church Rebuilding
With 1,680 EYN churches or church branches (new church starts) burned or abandoned, the need for support to help rebuild churches and congregations is great. This church rebuilding program is a separate part of the crisis response. Learn more.