Pray with Joe Bridi

Greetings from Lebanon. My name is Joe Bridi, and I serve as a National Field Staff working with our partners in the MENA region.

The education system in Lebanon continues to face increasing challenges. In a country suffering from uncontrollable inflation, budgets are exploding, forcing private schools to increase tuition. It is making them more and more unaffordable to most families. Public schools are collapsing and unable to pay decent wages to the teachers. This led to months of strikes and closures of public schools during the year. In the non-formal education centers we support, some children have had to drop out to go to work to help provide for the basic needs of their families. Domestic violence has also been increasing due to the high level of stress families are experiencing, highly affecting children. Parents are overwhelmed and let their anger out on them and tend to care less for their basic needs. We hear reports from our partner learning centers of children coming to the centers with very poor hygiene. Early marriages are also an increasing challenge for young girls from vulnerable families. Several of the young girls who graduated this year from the learning centers we support will quickly be married off by their families.

The current state of the situation can be discouraging at times, but we know that everything these precious children have learned over the course of the years spent at our partner centers will not be wasted. It gave them a very solid foundation in literacy and numeracy. It also instilled in them Christian values and ethics and assured them of their value in God’s eyes. It made them feel loved and cared for and provided a safe place for them to simply be children for a while.

Prayer Points:

Please pray:

  • That International donor funds increase to support a collapsing education sector in Lebanon and allow for more places in the public school system to accommodate all Lebanese children as well as the school-aged Syrian refugee children in the country.
  • That God may keep on renewing the strength, vision, and love of the educators we work with and give them peace from above, although their ministry can get draining at all levels.
  • That the quality of the education provided in the non-formal education programs we support constantly improves and that more and more children can benefit from it and catch up on years of missed education.
  • That everything the children learn will make them strong adults who can direct their future and know how precious they are in God’s eyes, and that they can rely on God and cry out to Him.
  • That the families and entire communities of the children will, in turn, be positively impacted, empowered, and encouraged.

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