Hastings Community Baptist PEPE is situated in Fullah Town, has achieved the Church Planting Objective and has brought changes to the community which is very much appreciated by its members. Notwithstanding, there are needs to be met to ensure sustainability, as this unit presents great potential for PEPESL.
Fullah Town Community is a new and growing community with mostly unfinished buildings and makeshift houses occupied by Care Takers. For economic reasons,they are not ready to send their children to even government owned primary schools, not to talk of preschools which were owned by the private sector. Before the deployment of PEPE and inception of the fellowship, there was neither church nor preschool. The community was Muslim dominated and makes do with the Arabic education for their children.
Well the Church Planting Objective of PEPE has already provided for a situation like this and so the challenge was taken. The importance of education, the benefit of dependence on God and the knowledge of Jehovah Jireh, is a three point message that caught the heart of the people, prompting a response to God’s love and they took the challenge to send their children to PEPE. Report of such response moved the Western Area Baptist Association East into the community with a one-week Gospel campaign, followed by a Home Cell and now a Preaching Station with increasing number of worshippers.
Appreciation expressed verbally and practically. Worshippers, benefitting families and community members keep testifying during fellowship hours and expressing at meetings and other forums of how God has blessed the community through PEPE. They can now boast of a standard preschool for their children and worship center for all and are no longer in ignorance. They said this is an evidence of development and they are appreciative and will remain grateful. Several times they have demonstrated this by voluntarily presenting needed items like toilet roll, soap, water from the stream etc., to the school. Most of them are gardeners; they also show appreciation by presenting vegetables to Volunteers. There is a very good relationship among the volunteers, the families and community as a whole. One major way they have expressed appreciation is to strive for sustainability of the project by unitedly working towards a permanent and good learning environment. The lead was taken by Mr. Philip Pessima and family who decide to offer part of his compound, permitting any type of structure to house the increasing number of children, all the other parents supported the work by making financial and material contributions. This has taken the building to roof stage, and what remains include plastering, ceiling and fixing of doors and windows. It never stopped there, as Mr.Philip Pessima, whose son Edward Pessima started his schooling with PEPE and have held first position from primary one through primary four his current class, have donated a plot of land measuring 1.2 Town lot for the development of PEPE work in SL, documentation is ongoing.
The following are our aspirations and challenges;
1. Our desire is to complete all legal procedures and develop the land to use part of it for national fund raising project.
2. Currently, we are challenged with weather inconvenience and security as a result of the unfinished structure. That need to be completed with doors and windows, ceiling and plastering.
I want to thank God for taking us through 2019 successfully. Thanks to Terezinha and the International team, also Ricardo and the West African team for great patience and support without which, things were never going to work. I cannot over emphasize how I cherish the Sierra Leone team of volunteers and the Baptist Convention Sierra Leone. I appreciate you all dearly. I also crave your urgent and continued support especially in the area of documentation and development of the land. This will surely take PEPESL to higher heights.
May God bless you all!
National Coordinator of Sierra Leone