Change Makers

Overcoming needs by using God-given talents to serve

Seventeen-year-old Akhi makes and sells low-cost masks to help stop the spread of COVID-19 in her community in Bangladesh. People around the world are using their talents, skills, and possessions to overcome obstacles so they can serve others in the time of COVID-19.

In this uncertain time, people around the world are finding their inner strength by using the talents God has given them. They move from overwhelmed to an overcomer by using their time, talent, and treasure to help offer relief to people around them.

The following stories show us how ordinary people can create extraordinary impact by sharing their gifts with others.

Charles Wani stands in front of his home, which holds the satellite dish he carried from South Sudan to Bidi Bidi refugee settlement. Now, that satellite dish helps bring lessons to refugee children.
Charles Wani stands in front of his home, which holds the satellite dish he carried from South Sudan to Bidi Bidi refugee settlement. Now, that satellite dish helps bring lessons to refugee children. (©2020 World Vision/photo by Aggrey Nyondwa)

Creating community in a time of physical distance

Temporary school closures due to COVID-19 have meant that parents worldwide struggle to juggle work schedules and their children’s educational needs.

In Uganda, Charles Wani worried about his children’s education as well as other kids living in Bidi Bidi refugee settlement.

He never imagined that something as simple as the TV and satellite dish he brought with him from South Sudan would allow refugee children to continue their education.

Charles helps educate about 17 children in shifts to allow for physical distancing. The kids embrace the learning program, which motivates Charles to continue.

In sharing something as simple as his TV, Charles is nourishing children’s desire to learn.

Early in the COVID-19 global health crisis, Bishop Lawrence White began to hear about people's increasing needs as a result of business closures and loss of jobs.
Early in the COVID-19 global health crisis, Bishop Lawrence White began to hear about people’s increasing needs as a result of business closures and loss of jobs. (©2020 World Vision/photo by Laura Reinhardt)

“The need is broad …”

Bishop Lawrence White began hearing about increased need from his congregation at the Church of the Living God and his Tacoma, Washington, community in March 2020.

“The need is broad; the need is food,” says Bishop White. “… The need for our service is growing.”

Every Wednesday, he and a group of volunteers provide food supplies to people in need.

They show up so people don’t have to go hungry.

Akhi shows off some of the many face masks she has sewn.
Akhi shows off some of the many face masks she has sewn. (©2020 World Vision/photo by Suborno Chisim)

Spreading hope, one mask at a time

COVID-19 has wreaked havoc on economies around the globe. Unemployment in the United States has reached unprecedented levels. It’s no different in Bangladesh, where 17-year-old Ahki helps support her family and community with her sewing machine. Her sales have plummeted as the coronavirus spread.

But she saw that people needed masks and what little was available was far too expensive for most in her area. So, she took her sewing machine and put it to good use.

“I decided to make masks by myself and sell them for a low price so that poor people can afford them. I even give masks for free to those who have no money,” says Akhi.


These are three hidden heroes who are using their God-given gifts to serve others in a time of need. They don’t expect anything in return. They just want to better the world.

 

Derrick Kyatuka, Sevil Omer, and George Sarkar of World Vision’s staff contributed to this story.

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