May he defend the afflicted among the people and save the children of the needy.— Psalm 72:4 (NIV)
Pray for baby girls in Albania.
Baby girls aren’t valued as highly as baby boys in Albania. About 112 boys are born for every 100 girls — higher than the global average of 105 boys per 100 girls. If gender selection continues, it will cause serious social problems, according to a World Vision study with the U.N. Population Fund.
Jesus, we lift up mothers who are pregnant with baby girls. Open their eyes to the beauty, joy, and blessing that a baby girl will be in their lives — as much as a baby boy. Soften their hearts so they raise all of their children in love.
Pray for child protection across the region.
About 629,000 children are institutionalized in eastern Europe. Studies also reveal widespread physical and psychological violence against children in these institutions. World Vision partners with all levels of governments to train social workers, help children and families reconnect, and empower children to address protection issues in their communities.
Lord, the tragedy of broken relationships and systems is evident in the plight of vulnerable children. Be with children as they face terrible conditions. Empower leaders as they work to restore healthy and effective child-protection services.
Pray for the marginalized Roma community in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Population estimates range widely, but conservatively, 30,000 Roma people live in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Existing political and legal deficiencies often limit education, social services, and employment opportunities for this ethnic group. World Vision provides health services to help members of Roma communities prevent HIV and tuberculosis as well as reducing stigma among healthcare providers. World Vision also helps Roma children integrate into school systems.
Lord, the Roma community has great need in many areas of life. Help us to “… defend the rights of the poor and needy” (Proverbs 31:9, NIV) in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Help oppression to cease and social services to be made available to all citizens, no matter their ethnic or economic group.
For years after the fall of communism, thousands of Romanian children, with and without disabilities, were severely neglected in state-run institutions. New laws and international pressure have helped improve conditions. Through nine multi-faceted care centers, World Vision works with children and families struggling with various disabilities. They receive education, essential health and counseling services, and job training.
Lord, You created each of us in Your image. May that knowledge lead caretakers to have compassion each day for the children they work with. Continue to soften leaders’ hearts to uphold laws that truly help those living with disabilities.
Pray for migrants in Georgia and Azerbaijan.
Vulnerable youth, especially from ethnic minorities, migrate across the Caucasus region in search of seasonal work or other opportunities. In particular, needle use among young people fueled an HIV epidemic here. World Vision helps migrants improve their health through easier access to education, treatment, support, and care services.
Heavenly Father, protect migrants as they wearily search for work in desperate times. Give them courage to face their circumstances and not resort to drug use. Inspire health workers to provide compassionate care to all who need their services.
Pray for peace in Kosovo.
Kosovo has experienced ongoing tensions with neighboring countries and between ethnic groups within the country since the disintegration of Yugoslavia in 1992. As a result, many children have grown up with mistrust, hatred, and insecurity. World Vision’s Kids for Peace project works with hundreds of youth to promote peace through life-skill and leadership training, games, and education on child rights, HIV and AIDS, gender equality, and environmental stewardship.
Jesus, in the Sermon on the Mount, You proclaimed, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God” (Matthew 5:9, NIV). Please raise up a new generation of youth who can unite to reach constructive solutions that address their differences and encourage a culture of peace in Kosovo.