Come join us for the 6th Annual Swazi 5K Run/Walk in Bethany, Oklahoma THIS Saturday, September 20, 2014. We have a sponsorship table and there will be an Expo with music, sponsor tables, vendors, drawings, etc., all morning, so runners/walkers come early to enjoy the atmosphere!
The need in Swaziland is greater than any one individual or organization. The Swaziland Partnership is working in a variety of ways to touch the lives and support positive change in this southern African nation. You can be a part.
The Beginning of the Partnership:
Bethany First Church of the Nazarene and the Swaziland Partnership
Swaziland is a country of great beauty and natural resources. When you encounter Swaziland and her people, it is difficult to juxtapose a deadly disease that is literally killing the population of this beautiful southern African nation. Rev. David Busic, senior pastor of Bethany First Church of the Nazarene (BFC), and Dr. Loren Gresham, president of Southern Nazarene University (SNU), felt compelled to get involved in Swaziland which has the highest HIV infection rate in the world. Between the church and university they formed what was called The Swaziland Partnership.They knew that the mission of the original founders of the Church of the Nazarene in Swaziland, Rev. Harmon Schmelzenbach and Dr. David Hynd, was to preach, teach and heal. Schmelzenbach and Hynd started 150 churches, three colleges of higher education in theology, nursing, and teachers training, high schools and primary schools, and Raleigh Fitkin Memorial Hospital along with a series of 17 rural medical clinics. These institutions all remain today. Nowhere in the world do you see this type of infrastructure for the Church of the Nazarene with a church, clinic and school in many of their communities. Their mandate from 100 years ago still stands with churches, healthcare, and education.
Yet, even with this great support, Swaziland has an HIV prevalence in adults of 31%. This country of less than a million people is threatened with the loss of half of its population due to AIDS.
This is what they saw and learned:
- Swaziland has the highest rate of HIV/AIDS in the world
- HIV prevalence in adults is at 31%
- A 15 year old has approximately 48% chance of reaching 35 years of age
- 15,000 households are headed by orphan children
- The United Nations ranked Swaziland #4 in the world for food security issues, meaning that starvation will outpace AIDS as the #1 killer
The Swaziland Partnership began with BFC and SNU, but today has many partners in Swaziland, South Africa, Canada and the United States.
You can donate, help, and pray for this ministry and find out all information at http://www.swazipartners.org/
There is something for everyone to do in Swaziland. You may not be able to do everything, but you can do something.
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