This project aims at the development of training programmes for Church leaders in communities that are poor and marginalised.
WITH is mentoring thirty local Training Developers throughout Africa. The Developers’ job is to create training resources for Christian leaders to engage their churches with local communities. Tangible changes transform communities, when church members make Christ visible amidst violence, ethnical divisions or neglect, coupled with poverty and health issues.
WITH has partnered with More than a Mile Deep (‘MMD’) for eight years. MMD is a purely African initiative of local trainers with heart to bring transformation through training in existing networks. They assist church denominations and Christian organisations to renew existing training methods.
WITH mentored MMD trainers, Victor and Alpheus, while training eleven key staff of one of MMD’s partner organisations which works in eight countries where the Christians are persecuted. Following the training, these key staff work with their own regional teams to develop the materials further. As with Deir Mar Thoma in Pakistan, these materials are carefully designed to be culturally relevant and sensitive to the often hostile local context.
WITH has also assisted MMD in developing Train the Trainer systems, enabling leaders in denominations to train others in a way that accelerates training and transformation. For instance, MMD in Zimbabwe currently uses this approach in six out of ten provinces with local church leaders bringing about community transformation as part of their studies.
WITH continues to help MMD to develop an agile approach to training, to constantly search for and adapt unique, practical solutions to ever-changing social, economic and spiritual issues, relevant to communities. Recently, WITH has coached MMD staff on innovative training for rural pastors, who often struggle to devote enough time to their families under the demands of ministry to their local, impoverished communities. Part of this training includes learning to be more effective in team leadership.
WITH is partnering with MMD for the next three years, to coach a team of sixteen trainers, tasked with renewing MMD’s B.Th. programme. WITH will also work alongside MMD in their ambitious project, which seeks to deliver training to all ten provinces of Zimbabwe and expand it to three neighbouring countries. In Mozambique WITH will assist twenty trainers of two large denominational networks to renew and expand their training programmes.
More than a Mile Deep (Sub-Saharan Africa)