KOCHI: Believers Church, in its effort to care for the needy and the suffering, will provide free education to five lakh children to provide a better future for the poor and downtrodden in the country.
At present the Church spends Rs 30 crore annually for the education and uplift of 60,000 children through 525 centres. The Bridge of Hope project of the Believers Church provides free education, health care, nutritious food and school supplies for underprivileged children, irrespective of caste or creed.
Metropolitan Bishop Dr K P Yohannan, the head of the Church, said that several other projects were in the offing which would be implemented in a phased manner. A leprosy hospital will be established at Purulia in West Bengal to provide specialised leprosy treatment, care and service.
Micro-finance projects will be launched to help set up Self Help Groups in 7,500 centres through the Believers Church Women’s Fellowship.
Literacy programmes will be conducted with special focus on the women in rural areas. Other projects are schemes for the welfare and development of women in distress, especially widows and deserted wives, and a medical college to train professionals to serve the poor and needy. The Church has a government approved and licensed Street Children Home in New Delhi which is a haven for abandoned and homeless children. The children are provided with physical and psychological health care, education and parental affection.
A primary school based in Tenkasi, Tamil Nadu, provides residential care to children of nomadic groups giving them the hope of a bright future.
To enhance basic medical care for the neediest people, Believers Church has mobile medical teams and camps all over the country, which benefit over three lakh families a year. The Church has taken the initiative to dig over 5,000 wells for needy communities. The annual goal is to reach 10,000 families through 31 project centres of the Church.
An investment of Rs 3.5 crore has been made in poverty alleviation projects for the uplift of over 50,000 families.
The adult literacy programme is aimed at five lakh adults living in the rural areas in the next five years.
Recently newly elected bishops of the Believers Church were consecrated by Metropolitan K P Yohannan at a ceremony held at St Thomas Cathedral, Kuttapuzha, Thiruvalla. Fathers B K Lukose (Hyderabad), C K Noucham (Myanmar), B Sundar Raj (Assam), Anilkumar Debavarma (Tripura), Gopal Chathri (Nepal) and Emmanuel Juribu (Siliguri) are the senior priests who were consecrated.
The Church now has 25 dioceses with well over 18 lakh members in 10 nations. The Believers church has included a department in its constitution exclusively for charitable service, community development and free education.
The Church also runs hospitals, schools, professional colleges, seminaries and educational programmes across the country.