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© ELWA Ministries Association USA
As a sister organization to SIM and ELWA Ministries Liberia, ELWA Ministries Association USA (EMAUSA) partners with SIM in spreading the Gospel in word and deed in Liberia. EMAUSA’s leadership team had a recent video Zoom call with Nicholas Piaget and we shared our hearts for the mission in Liberia. Together we identified many important projects that EMAUSA could support with fundraising efforts in the U.S. to support these initiatives.
Missionary HousingOne great need expressed by Nicholas is for missionary housing. There are several needed ELWA missionaries who are scheduled to join ELWA staff, but at this time there is no housing available for them. Several houses that were built in the 1950s have fallen into disrepair. These homes must be renovated to accommodate these missionaries. Nicholas Piaget asked EMAUSA to assist in raising funds to rebuild these homes.
ELWA Missionary Housing Repairs: $40,000 needed
Basketball CourtEMAUSA had plans to renovate the gym but an inspection report showed that the structure was not safe enough to pursue that project. Alternatively we have developed a plan to build an outdoor basketball court for the sports ministry. ELWA/SIM has designated a plot of land on the High School grounds for an outdoor basketball court. The much bigger project to build an all-new gym may still be developed in the future. See a report from Meanu Kayea below for more details about how the basketball court will be used.
New Outdoor Basketball Court: $25,000 needed
ICM Church RoofEMAUSA would also like to continue to support the building of the International Church of Monrovia (ICM) on ELWA Campus. The foundation, walls and roof girders are completed but there is still much to be done including completing the roof.
International Church of Monrovia on ELWA Campus “Raise the Roof “Fundraiser: $30,000 needed
ScholarshipsLiberian children continue to receive an education as a result of EMAUSA's support.
Scholarships: $36,000 needed for the 2023-24 school year
Lee Sonius, Steve Ackley, Sam Kayea and Clip Kniffin traveled to the ELWA campus in November. Lee, Steve and Sam grew up on the campus, and Steve and Sam had not been back to Liberia for 40 years! Their insights and new vision produced a new goal for the EMAUSA: To renovate the old gymnasium and upgrade the housing stock on the campus. The excitement among these three “ELWA kids” was palpable, and we are enthusiastic about the gym project and making it once again an attractive meeting place.
Today the old gym is a mere shadow of its former self. In the 1960s and 70s it was a gathering spot for the ELWA kids of yesteryear. The boys played basketball, and weddings were performed. Church services and graduation ceremonies were held there. But the Liberian civil war and the salt air off the Atlantic Ocean have taken a toll of the gym, and today it is in sad shape. Our plan is to make the gym a center for sports ministry and discipleship. More than this, we want to make a center for community activities. To accomplish this, our current plan is to extend the south side (the side closest to the Atlantic Ocean) by 20-30 feet to make room for bleachers. Electrical and plumbing upgrades are vitally important for this restoration. A second goal is to restore the Schindler house that is next to the beach so that it can house a missionary family.
At present we estimate the total cost of these improvements to be $60,000-$80,000. Much depends the feasibility study now being undertaken and upon our ability to raise the funds. Your generosity in supporting this project is vital to its success.
The new Perkins generator arrived on the ELWA campus in May. EMAUSA contributed a modest amount toward the purchase of this generator for ELWA. SIM missionary Alan Shea was on hand to help install the new generator and integrate it with the generator control system and the three Cummins generators on the campus. Because the Liberian rainy season is now underway, the demands on the ELWA generators are reduced. However, when the dry season returns in December, these generators will be needed for backup power for ELWA.
ELWA Ministries Liberia is a group of ministries and services located on a 132-acre campus in Paynesville, Liberia, outside the capital city of Monrovia. From this campus, Liberians are served by the first gospel radio station in Africa, healthcare at the ELWA Hospital, education for 825 Liberian children at the ELWA Academy, and dental services at Trinity Dental Clinic. Today, the campus is home to over 75 families of ELWA Ministries staff and expatriate missionaries from several organizations. Reliable, cost-effective electricity is essential to the work of ELWA Ministries.
Since the 1990’s, ELWA’s diesel generators provided the exclusive source for electricity, running for months at a time without the maintenance they needed. A year ago, in March 2021, the ELWA campus connected to the Liberian Electric Company (LEC) power system for the first time in nearly 40 years. For some months, LEC provided as much as 85% of the power for ELWA, and generators were only needed 15% of the time, which we hoped would extend their lifespan.
In recent months, LEC has only been able to provide electricity to the campus to supply about 35% of ELWA's needs, or about 4 to 6 hours per day. December through April are dry season months, meaning that the flow of water through Liberia’s only hydroelectric plant is reduced significantly. In addition, increased demand of newly-added customers has taxed the lower production capacity. This has stressed the ELWA generators and Technical Services staff to the breaking point. Power must be maintained at the hospital so power is often shut off in other areas, like the missionaries homes and guest house which makes it difficult to eat and sleep. ELWA urgently needs to purchase a new, larger generator with the capacity to provide electricity to the campus within the next few weeks. A new generator is available now if we can come up with the remaining funds quickly.
We are asking you to consider joining with others to raise the needed funds to make this urgent purchase. This purchase is part of the continuing development plan for building and equipping a new powerhouse at ELWA.
ELWA now has the chance to purchase a new 400kVA diesel generator for the ELWA campus for a cost of $64,300. The offer of this generator is time sensitive and we don't want to lose this opportunity. We were informed that ELWA has $24,000 on hand for the purchase of the generator and so the net funding gap is $40,300. One donor has offered to match every dollar raised and so the funding gap is reduced to half leaving $20,150 still urgently needed.
Work was paused on the construction of the new ICM building in April due to COVID-19 and its restrictions. In addition to health risk, because the government imposed a 3:00 PM curfew, workers had to start making their way back home by 1 PM which meant the work day was cut short.