By: Lerato Brown, Communications and Marketing Manager, Lesotho
As a new day dawned ushering us into the new year dedicated to reflection, gratitude, and unity, World Vision staff from all corners of the globe came together for a special occasion – the Annual Day of Prayer. This poignant gathering marked the commencement of the new financial year, 2024, under the theme of "Strength and Courage," inspired by 1 Peter 5:10. With hearts full of hope, the World Vision family, including children, donors, and staff, joined in prayer to seek divine guidance and blessings for the journey ahead.
The World Vision International Lesotho Day of Prayer began with a heartfelt prayer by Portia Ramoloko, a community development officer whose words resonated with humility and gratitude. She raised her voice to the heavens, expressing profound thanks to God for His unwavering support throughout the past year. Her prayer was a poignant reminder of the immense impact World Vision has on children, families, and communities worldwide. With tears in her eyes, Portia beseeched God for His grace to lead the World Vision into the new year, fortified with strength and courage.
The National Director, James Chifwelu, took the staff on a journey through the past year's successes and challenges. He shared remarkable achievements, including advocacy efforts that led to the enactment of the Domestic Violence Bill in collaboration with partners. Additionally, the construction of 170 shade nets improved vegetable production for 340 households, while 248 households gained access to sanitation facilities. Over 11,000 people now have access to basic drinking water sources in targeted communities, and the organization raised over 4.1 million USD (78 million Maloti) in FY23, reaching a remarkable 156% of its goal. This achievement included a significant contribution of Euro 1 million for cash transfer programs. Upgrading three magistrate courts to Child Friendly spaces was another milestone celebrated.
James Chifwelu expressed heartfelt gratitude to the dedicated World Vision International Lesotho staff for their unwavering commitment to ensuring the well-being of the Most Vulnerable Children (MVC) in Lesotho. He emphasized the importance of remaining committed by God's grace to continue changing lives.
The event also showcased World Vision's dedication to advocacy and partnering through the announcement of the new Global Campaign, #ENOUGH, designed to end hunger and malnutrition. The campaign aims to create a world where every child enjoys nourishing food and has the opportunity to thrive, echoing the sentiment “End Child Hunger and Malnutrition."
In a powerful display of unity, World Vision International Lesotho staff from various Area Programmes came together to offer their heartfelt prayers to God. They prayed for God's mercy, direction, and intervention on behalf of the poor, the powerless, the afflicted, and the oppressed. Their petitions extended to hope and dignity for all women and children, challenging unjust attitudes and systems, and promoting the equitable sharing of resources. Love without discrimination or conditions, peace within homes, communities, and nations, and hope in the face of suffering were also fervently prayed for. Blessings were invoked upon the efforts made by World Vision teams and countless others working to alleviate the plight of the marginalized. Above all, they prayed for a full and abundant life for every child and for the will to make it so.
Children the heart and soul of World Vision's mission, took center stage to share their prayers of thanksgiving. They expressed gratitude for all that God had done for them and placed their trust in Him for continued care and guidance in the new year.
Bishop Vincentia Kgabe delivered a moving sermon based on 1 Peter 5:10, emphasizing the theme of "Strength and Courage" and inspiring all present to embrace these qualities in the face of challenges. In the closing moments, the Advisory Council, joined by Bishop Vincentia, offered fervent prayers for the leadership of World Vision. They sought divine protection, wisdom, and guidance, ensuring the organization's unwavering commitment to fulfilling the broader World Vision’s vision and mission.
As the sun set on this special day of reflection and prayer, the World Vision family left the gathering with hearts filled with hope, strength, and courage. The collective faith, dedication, and unwavering commitment to making the world a better place for children and communities serve as a beacon of inspiration for the new financial year, 2024. In unity, they move forward, steadfast in their mission to bring about lasting change and transformation in the lives of the most vulnerable.