Our world is full of hurting families and nations torn apart by war and violence. More than 930 million people live in countries with conflict, violence, or fragile internal systems, according to the World Bank. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated conditions and reversed years of progress in regard to extreme poverty. The following are some of the places with the greatest humanitarian needs, where children, families, and communities struggle to acquire the basic necessities of life.
It can be difficult to know how to help people in need. Through prayer, we can “seek peace and pursue it” (Psalm 34:14). Pray with us for peace for fragile contexts and conflict zones and for children and families living through difficult times.
Pray for peace in northern Ethiopia.
Rapidly declining humanitarian conditions have pushed Ethiopia into a state of emergency. Even before conflict erupted in November 2020, families faced food insecurity, inflated food and fuel prices due to recurrent drought, desert locusts, and the spread of COVID-19. Families need life-saving aid, such as access to clean water, food supplies, and emergency shelter.
Dear Father, we cry out for peace and stability — for everyone. We pray for Your protection over children and their families in northern Ethiopia who are caught in conflict and face ever-increasing dangers.
Pray for recovery in Haiti.
Haiti is in a state of turmoil. One of the poorest countries in the Americas, Haiti faces political unrest, an upsurge in violence, fuel shortages, and high levels of food insecurity. On August 14, 2021, a deadly magnitude 7.2 earthquake devastated the Caribbean nation and deepened its dire humanitarian situation.
Oh, gracious Father, our hearts call out to You to heal this beautiful land. We lift up Haiti’s children and families who are suffering from disasters, natural and manmade. We ask that You comfort them with Your love, goodness, and strength.
Pray for Lebanon’s children and families.
The August 4, 2020, deadly Beirut blast and worsening economic crisis have increased the number of people living in poverty in Lebanon. The economic crisis has brought hyperinflation, destroyed family savings, and resulted in food, fuel, medical, and power shortages, leaving millions of people struggling to survive.
Lord, we lift our voices to ask for Your heavenly help for children and families in Lebanon. You are the Great Healer. We ask that You bring calm to the parties in conflict, comfort to families, and restore livelihoods.
Pray for people in the Northern Triangle.
Millions of people in Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala — countries that form Central America’s Northern Triangle — suffer from poverty, violence, and lack of opportunities. Without hope for improving their lives at home, many risk everything to migrate to North America, seeking safety and security for their families.
Heavenly Father, bless your children in Central America who live in fear and poverty. May they find hope in You and opportunities to pursue education, employment, and prosperity.
Pray for Syrians affected by conflict.
Since 2011, Syria’s civil war has torn apart the country and sent 13.5 million people — more than half of the country’s population — fleeing for safety. Many Syrian children don’t remember a peaceful life before bombing and death became daily realities. Learn the facts you need to know by reading our Syria FAQs.
Dear Lord, bring hope to children and families who have lost everything to conflict in Syria. May they find peace in You and courage to rebuild their lives and country.
Pray for South Sudanese families.
South Sudan has existed as an independent country for 10 years and with serious armed conflict and natural disasters impacting people for most of this time. The brutal conflict has displaced 4.3 million, including 2.2 million who fled the country as refugees. In 2021, about 8.3 million people needed humanitarian aid, according to the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Flooding has forced an estimated 780,000 people to flee communities along the Nile and Lol rivers, and in the Sudd marshlands since May.
Prince of Peace, we pray for the restoration of peace and civility in South Sudan, so children can grow into all You intend them to be.
Pray for Venezuela’s refugee and migrant crisis.
Venezuela’s deteriorating economic conditions, political unrest, food insecurity, and collapsing healthcare system have driven 5.9 million people from the country. And the COVID-19 pandemic has compounded the country’s humanitarian and economic crisis.
God, please protect those who’ve fled their homes, especially children, the elderly, and people who are disabled, as they’re among the most vulnerable. We ask in Your name to restore communities, reunite families, and repair this country.
Pray for peace on earth, especially for people living in unstable countries.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq, and Myanmar are among the countries in particular need of prayer because of political instability. In these countries, the vulnerable often sink deeper into poverty.
You, Lord, are our Rock and our Salvation. Stand with us so that we are strong in doing Your work in the world. Unite us toward a common goal of peace and prosperity for all.
Elizabeth Hendley and Sevil Omer of World Vision’s staff in the U.S. contributed to this article.