This July, I am leaving Phoenix to serve alongside a team of missionaries in Gabon- a small French speaking country on the west coast of Africa. It is Africa’s 5th least densely populated country, and is 85% covered in tropical forest. I will be staying in Libreville (the capital), and will work in a variety of settings, including, but definitely not limited to, the local churches, homes and an orphanage.
The type of work I will be doing will include using my background in speech-language pathology to assist families with disabled children, and/or any older adults who have post-stroke language losses, dementia, or any other language-impairments. I feel the Lord’s call very strongly in this field and I believe He wants the people of Libreville to be served in a way that they never have been before (there are only a few speech therapists in Libreville, and they are too expensive for most to afford).
If you know how much I love music, you probably won’t be surprised to hear that I’m taking my guitar and harmonicas with me (I just hope they survive the 28 hr plane rides!) ☺ I’ll be working with the local churches in their music ministries and will get a chance to integrate a lot of French and English worship together.
Just to give you a sense of all the tremendous opportunities there are in Gabon right now, here is a list of the major areas of ministry that my team is engaged with. I will almost definitely work with some of the following:
- Hope House – abandoned children’s home; run through a local church in Libreville
- English as a Second Language classes
- Setting up a summer program through the church for local Gabonese university students
- Joining with local churches for evangelical outreaches to reach their community
- Working with the national church in developing their cross-cultural missions program incorporating nearby Cameroon into their ministry
- Sports outreach ministries – soccer camp/friendly soccer matches etc. (a soccer-field is located adjacent to the short term center’s temporary facility
- Building short-term center facilities
- Mobile Medical Clinic – educating, and providing primary care medicine to village
- Working at the local daughter clinic of Bongolo Evangelical Hospital