Hope to the People of Ik Through Education

Nahate James is my name,  born from Sironko district, Eastern Uganda, and has been a missionary with Global Link Afrika since February 2022. I am currently serving alongside 3 other GLA missionaries among the Ik people group in Ik county, Kaabong district, Karamoja region.

The beauty of Ik

The Ik community is a small group of people who are at the border with Kenya and South Sudan, they speak Ik language. I had known Karamoja region to be a very dry place and hot as I earlier on read and heard to my surprise, Ik is quite different, God has blessed it with cool weather, green scenery and the Rift Valley which makes Ik very beautiful and amazing.

From business administration to missionary teacher

Much as my background is in Business Administration, I am currently serving as a missionary
teacher at Timu primary school teaching mathematics and CRE in primary 3 and 4. Ik community
has only two community primary schools expected to serve the community of over 4,000 children
and both schools stop in primary 4. By the grace of God, He enabled us to start primary five, we pray that God may graciously help the school to go up to primary seven, and provide for classroom blocks, more teachers, and scholastic materials in the school for sustainability. As we use education as our entry point for mission, we pray for the gospel to transform the lives of these Ik Children to the glory of God.

The needs:

The security situation among the Ik remains uncertain because of their geographical location between two pastoralists communities of Turkanas in Kenya and Dodos in Uganda making the land unsecured sometimes because of cattle raiders from both sides. Pray that God would protect us amidst these situations to continue to serve the Ik people holistically with the gospel of Jesus Christ. The community especially Timu where we live needs a health facility to respond to the health needs in the community. On our team, we
have a nurse who does community health and referral of patients to the health Centre 2 which is aver
10 kilometers from Timu village and this distance makes it hard for patients and expectant mothers to easily access health services on time making us lose lives of some people with emergency situations.

 

As missionaries from other cultures and languagesserving among the Ik people, language barrier has been a hindrance to our ministry since we depend on the few interpreters who stopped in primary 4 and knows little English for proper interpretations. Pray for the Holy Spirit to guide our interpreters to get critical message we communicate for the gospel to be easily understood by the people as we proclaim the gospel to the IK people. Pray for boldness to proclaim this gospel among the Ik people
and for us to be able to learn the Ik language where possible God being our helper

Testimony of God’s sovereign hand at work:

Besides Ik being a challenging mission placement, God is sovereign and the Ik people are getting the
gospel. I was amazed by one of the children when I asked him why he believes in Christ, he told me “Because Christ will receive him one day when he dies”. The children I teach at school used to bath after a week or more but now through our sanitation and hygiene teachings at school, most of them are now smart and we are happy and for those who come to school dirty, we bring them in front of others to laugh at them, then the following day
they come when they are clean and now their parents have started to adopt to the culture cleanliness from their children. When we introduced leadership in the school they voted for their leaders for the first time since their school started and this is now helping them to practice leadership skills. Our school head boy can now conduct an assembly alone without our help, we are so proud of him. This leadership development has started impacting
the church because we have started seeing our children taking on leadership positions in their churches. We thank God for all the great work He is doing and He is calling us to participate in His mission among the Ik people.