Embracing the migrant and nomad

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Naomi Awuni experienced great loss in 2014. Her 16-year-old son King (shown above) succumbed to a long illness in July. King was a sweet kid and model student.

A School for Migrant Children

Naomi started the King James Academy, named for both her sons, to educate and disciple migrant children around her town of Sunyani. Thousands of northern Ghanaians have migrated south for subsistence farming and have settled in makeshift villages around Sunyani. Among these migrants are West Africa’s well-known nomads, the Muslim Fulani. Not only do the settlements suffer from poverty, alcoholism, violence and dangerous traditional religious practices, they are also filled with children who are invisible to Ghana’s education system. Thanks to Naomi, some of these migrant children now have access to education and a hot meal every day. Additionally, the children are hearing the gospel and seeing God’s love modeled daily.

Practical Needs of King James Academy

The school is run in a very simple open structure and lacks many of the supplies and equipment found in Ghana’s government schools. Most of the school’s toys and books are left over from my own children’s time in Ghana this year. If you would like to make a gift to Naomi’s school, just send a check to YLI with a note designating it for King James Academy. We will use it to buy equipment and educational supplies.

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Discipleship of Muslims

Naomi’s passion for the Muslim community around her reaches beyond its  youngest members. When I last visited Sunyani, Naomi introduced a Muslim Fulani teenager to me as her disciple. Consistent with YLI’s teaching, Naomi engages Muslims with discipleship even before they accept Christ. She told me, “He (the Fulani disciple) goes everywhere with me, to church and even to minister in migrant villages”. The young man has not yet accepted Christ, but he receives instruction from the Bible and sees Christ’s love lived-out through Naomi. Naomi’s discipleship is effective because it is grounded in love and relationship. Migrant people know that Naomi loves them and their children enough to improve their lives and futures.

Author: Ash Zook

Executive Director Young Leaders International PO Box 1088 Carrollton, GA 30112

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