Among the 3 million Syrian and Iraqi refugees living in displaced communities in countries like Lebanon and Jordan, are young university-aged students, whose hopes and dreams for the future have been shattered by the terror unleashed in the region. Perhaps, like me, you have watched the devastation and human suffering perpetrated in the name of religion, and wondered what beyond prayer you might be able to do.
The truth is there is so much that is needed to bring light and hope into this darkness, and so it falls to each of us in turn to consider what we can do to minister grace and hope. That is why, in my role as newly appointed Director of GlobalEd, and as the Academic Vice President at LCC International University, I am eager to share an opportunity with you that can make a Kingdom difference.
GlobalEd, the equipping arm of PAOC International Missions, is collaborating in a strategic initiative with LCC International University, a Christian liberal-arts university in Lithuania, to do what God has uniquely equipped and positioned it to do in order to care and serve with Christian love these vulnerable young people.
It’s a simple vision to describe - identify and deliver from the region about 150 university-ready students each year and place them in a location where they can receive holistic care and academic preparation by ministry-minded teachers and staff. Then, transition them to university settings where they will continue to grow under the care of others who share the same vision for restored hope.
The vision is pretty clear, but challenging to achieve. However, we are certain that God is leading and so we step out in faith. The program will be offered in the strategic location of Tbilisi, Georgia and through the rest of this year critical groundwork needs to be done.
This program is about students, but similarly signals HOPE to the communities that feel abandoned. It also makes the reality of the refugee problem visible to communities around the world and will hopefully stimulate additional action.
- Identify and provide opportunity for high-potential student refugees from Syria and Iraq, including those from minority Christian groups, whose education has been disrupted.
- Design and successfully run a holistic pre-university program for up to 150 students per year, one that cares for the specific academic, social and spiritual needs of these students.
- Restore dignity through care and support provided in the context of a nurturing Christian community.
- Provide practical transitional support to further undergraduate university studies at institutions that will provide opportunity for holistic personal development.
The important groundwork for the preparation phase needs to begin now.
Estimated cost for this work
Will you join us by investing in the lives of these students? Together we can make an impact for His kingdom and see the next generation rise to their God-given potential.
Stepping out in faith,
Dr. Kirk Kauffeldt