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78 posts categorized "Africa"

May 10, 2010

A Sex Crazed Culture at the World Cup

There are a lot of things heading to South Africa for the World Cup this summer. For starters, I'll be going with my two boys and 21 other people. We'll be doing ministry in Johannesburg and Capetown and catching a few games while we're at it. I'll also be live blogging and uploading pictures and video for you to see. I have no idea what to expect because I've never been to anything quite like this. 

But this is what will shock you: THERE ARE ALSO 1 BILLION CONDOMS heading to South Africa. When I saw that number I couldn't believe it. Really?! Is humanity that sex crazed?! Everyone is planning on making big money from everyone's sexual appetite; taxi drivers, pimps, strip clubs, hotel concierge's, sauna's, message parlors. And all of this in an area that has one of the highest rates of HIV/AIDS in the world. 

The result? Aborted fetuses, orphaned babies, boys and girls sex trafficked and forced to serve 40-60 clients a day, violence, abuse, and a ton of HIV spread for these folks to take home with them and infect others. This is absolutely heartbreaking. The world is in desperate need of a Savior. 

CAPE TOWN, South Africa -- South Africa and the World Cup: 1 Billion Condoms and 40,000 Workers. The taxi drivers hustling around the bars on Long Street in Cape Town say they are ready for all the soccer fans that will flood the city in June for the World Cup. So are hotels, restaurants, breweries and, inevitably, prostitutes.

Arguably, the soccer World Cup is to the sex industry what the holiday season is to candy shops. A temporary surge of excited people feeling collectively festive, willing to pay for a bit of extra indulgence.

South Africa's Drug Central Authority estimates 40,000 sex workers will trickle in for the event from as far as Russia, the Congo and Nigeria to cater to the wide taste spectrum of some 400,000, mostly male, visitors and their apres-soccer needs.

Henry Africa, 49, drives a taxi in Cape Town and, aside from the usual airport pickups and winery tours, he also operates the "Bright Red Tour," which he expects to be a hit among soccer fans. For the equivalent of 500 dollars, he'll shuttle customers from strip bar to strip bar all night and even bring them over to a safe-sex practicing prostitute, a relevant selling point in a country where one in five adults are estimated to be HIV positive.

Over the years as a cabbie, he says he has seen it all: men hoping to try sex with someone HIV-positive, men getting drugged, beat up and robbed because they thought they could find what they needed on their own. Read the rest of the article here, from the Huffington Post.


March 12, 2010

Love Mercy

Award winning author Lisa Samson has a new book out called Love Mercy: A Mother and Daughter's Journey from the American Dream to the Kingdom of God - and you have to read it! Lisa and her daughter, Ty, came with me on a trip to Swaziland, Africa two years ago. This book is about their experience together and how God changed their lives forever. 

Lisa continues to help change the lives of the people in Swaziland, she's even help raise the funds to build a brand new school for a village of impoverished orphans in the southern part of the country. Because of her generous spirit, Lisa has donated all of the profits from this book to Children's HopeChest. Get this book, go on a journey to Africa with Lisa and Ty, and see how God uses it to change you.

March 09, 2010

Going to the World Cup? So are 40,000 Prostitutes

I will be taking my boys, along with 20 others, to the World Cup this June. Yes, we will participate in the fanfare, but are also seeing some great ministry sites. This report is disturbing to me for a number of reasons. The most alarming is the South Africa has one of the highest rates of HIV/AIDS infection in the entire world. I just don't get it. 

40,000 prostitutes bound for South Africa for the 2010 World Cup, officials warn

Saturday, March 6th 2010, 4:32 PM

As the city prepares for the 2010 World Cup, officials are warning about an influx of sew workers.

AP/Aman Sharma

As the city prepares for the 2010 World Cup, officials are warning about an influx of sew workers.

Officials are warning that tens of thousands of sex workers could enter South Africa during this year’s World Cup, and that children are at risk of being targeted by the sex trade.

World Cup organizers say up to 40,000 prostitutes were recruited for this year’s event, which takes place in a country where 16 percent of the population is believed to be living with HIV.

Officials also raised the possibility that local children would be recruited into the prostitution business partly due to the fact that World Cup takes place during a four week national school holiday.

The concerns were raised at a meeting of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.

Davis Bayever, South Africa’s deputy chair of the country’s Central Drug Authority, said his government feared the large influx of sex workers and pledged an attempt to stem the tide.

"It's horrific and very concerning," Bayever said. "Money talks, and if you're a sex worker then there is going to be money in South Africa in 2010."

Bayever said that passport checks, screening, and profiling will take place at the borders to try and prevent illegal arrivals. He believes the women will be traveling from all over the world, especially Eastern Europe.

Especially troubling was the prospect that impoverished children would be lured into sex work by the country’s sordid drug and prostitution underworld.

"There is no doubt that they will be targeted to become prostitutes," Bayever said. "Children from poor rural families will be given a carrot by criminals who tell them they will have a job if they come to the big city."

Around 450,000 fans are expected to travel to South Africa to attend this year’s World Cup.

Read more:

March 08, 2010

80 Reported Kids Raped in Swaziland Since January

This just kills me. This means there are a lot more cases unreported. Please, please pray with us and send this to your friends to pray too. There's still so much work to do in Swaziland. This comes from our Country Director's blog - Jumbo and Kriek.

We have seen great progress in Ministry here in Swaziland, but when you read articles like this in the Observer this morning you know we still have ways to go to protect the children of Swaziland from all the predators roaming around. We are moving into the Marula season and alcohol abuse will be much higher the next 2 months.

Please join with us in a special prayer today for the protection and healing of the most precious in the eyes of our Father. Here is the article in the Swazi Observer of March 8, 2010

"ABOUT 80 children have been raped in Swaziland in the last two months, police have said. Statistics released by late last week indicate that from January to the end of February, at least 121 rape incidents were reported in the country, and more than two-thirds of these involved children. 
Such alarming figures have fuelled the call for urgent passing of the Domestic Violence and Sexual Offences Bill into law. 

Police Director of Domestic Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Senior Superintendent Leckinah Magagula has raised an alarm, especially to women and children - who are major targets of abuse. Senior Superintendent Magagula encouraged parents to keep a ‘hawk-eye' on their children, particularly during the current marula season. The seasonal marula brew and alcohol abuse had been cited as the leading cause for most rape cases in the country. Magagula said a number of children were raped on the way home after school and some at their respective homes.

Police have warned that most children were raped by people well known to them. The statistics show that they are in danger from their siblings, parents, uncles, neighbors and helpers. The unprecedented increase in rape cases has fuelled police to call upon parliament to urgently pass the Domestic Violence and Sexual Offences Bill to Law. Senior Superintendent Magagula observed that the country was using outdated laws with light penalties against the perpetrators. She prayed that parliament would apply the same urgency it show when passing the Human Trafficking Law. The country is stuck with pre-colonial laws such as the Crimes Act of 1889 and the Girls and Women's Protection Act of 1920. In essence, such laws cripple the efficiency of the judicial system and do not effectively address the evolving trends of abuse. "It is high time perpetrators are given harsher sentences," she said. 

The Sexual Offences and Domestic Violence Bill have been tabled in both Houses of Parliament and this legislation seeks to address some major gaps which appear in the current laws dealing with sexual offences and domestic violence. For instance, it has broadened the definition of rape to cover not only unlawful sexual intercourse with another but also unlawful sexual acts committed under certain circumstances, including any coercive manner, under false pretence or by fraudulent means, under duress, fear of violence or psychological oppression."

March 04, 2010

Ethiopian Donations Stolen by Rebels

This is sad:
"Fresh controversy over aid to Ethiopia erupted today after an investigation concluded that millions intended for victims of the 1984 famine was diverted to anti-government rebel leaders – including the current Ethiopian Prime Minister.
The allegations, made by former rebel compatriots of Meles Zenawi, are the first to detail how millions raised by Bob Geldof’s Live Aid were siphoned off to arm the rebels against the army of Mengistu Haile Mariam.
Although millions of people were saved by the Western aid that poured into Ethiopia after Live Aid, the evidence from the BBC investigation suggests that not all of it went to the most needy.

With much of Ethiopia in rebel hands, aid agencies had to bring in food and funds for those areas from Sudan, accompanied by rebel fighters.
Aregawi Berhe, the former military commander of the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), claimed that of the $100 million that went through the rebels’ hands, 95 per cent was diverted to buy weapons or recruit Ethiopians to their cause. He said the rebels put on a "drama" to get their hands on the relief money. "The aid workers were fooled," he said.
Another former associate of Mr Meles described how rebel commanders posed as merchants in meetings with Western charity workers to get access to the aid money.

One aid worker, Max Peberdy, said he had carried nearly $500,000 in Ethiopian currency across the border to give to the rebel’s own relief organisation, Rest, for the purchase of grain to take place under his supervision.

Twenty-five years later, he maintains that the money could not have been diverted, insisting there was a separation of power between the rebels’ military wing and its relief efforts.

But Gebremedhin Araya, a former senior rebel leader, told the BBC that he had tricked the money out of Mr Peberdy by posing as a merchant and handing over bags of sand instead of grain to the rebel relief officials.

"I was given clothes to make me look like a Muslim merchant,” he said. “This was a trick for the NGOs." He said that the money he received was handed over to TPLF leaders, including Mr Meles.

The findings are backed by CIA reports which alleged that rebel groups were using their own relief organisations as a front to divert money to their military wings.

“Some funds that insurgent organisations are raising for relief operations, as a result of increased world publicity, are almost certainly being diverted for military purposes,” a confidential CIA report concluded in 1985.

Organisations such as Charity Navigator and the makers of the 2000 documentary The Hunger Business had previously claimed that Mr Mengistu’s armouries were equipped by diverted Western aid.

Mr Meles became Ethiopia’s President, and later Prime Minister, in 1991 following Mengistu’s defeat by the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front, an umbrella front that included the TPLF.

Mr Meles remains a controversial recipient of Western aid today, praised for his success in lifting rural Ethiopians out of poverty but disliked for his perceived interference on where aid goes and questionable human rights practices, including the withholding of foreign food aid in the separatist Ogaden region.

Mr Meles's office declined to comment on the allegations. The two men interviewed by the BBC fell out with the leadership years ago and have fled the country.

Mr Peberdy still believes that none of the aid was diverted. "It's 25 years since this happened and it's the first time anybody has claimed such a thing."

January 23, 2010

Pictures from South Africa and Swaziland

  Swaziland Riaan & Barry

So excited to see what Children's HopeChest is accomplishing across Africa. New Pictures up from this trip on my Facebook Account. Click here to see. This is Riaan Heynes and Barry Huggins. Riaan is the Missions pastor at New Life Church in Colorado Springs. They just cancelled our flight here in Swaziland back to Johannesburg. No phone call, no warning! Hoping to get on the next one so we can catch our flight to Washington DC this evening. It's the middle of summer here and burning hot. I need to get back to my family and winter in Colorado!

January 20, 2010

First Available Orphanage Sponsorship in South Africa

First Available Orphanage Sponsorship in South Africa from Tom Davis on Vimeo.

January 18, 2010

Durban, South Africa - Partnership with Children's HopeChest and Focus on the Family

Children's Hopechest & Focus on the Family South Africa from Tom Davis on Vimeo.

January 14, 2010

Exciting News - Opening a New Country in Africa

On Saturday morning I'm leaving for South Africa. This country is #1 in the number of AIDS orphans in the world with over 1.4 million. The total number of orphans is 3.4 million, a massive amount of children trying to survive without one or both parents.

This is a partnership formed between Children's Hopechest and Focus on the Family that's been in the works for a number of years now. Focus will help us recruit churches and sponsors for the many orphans will be ministering to through media, print and radio. I'll meet with Amon, the President of Focus on the Family Africa, to assess ministry sites and see the needs. 

Then, we'll be off to Swaziland for a few days to visit our staff and see the carepoints. Riaan Heyns, the missions pastor at New Life Church in Colorado Springs will also be in Swaziland with me. They will be sponsoring a carepoint as a church, but he's also there to see the sites Desperation and Heartwork are building. They are doing some amazing work in Swaziland! Building kitchens and schools, feeding a thousand orphans, drilling well, it's going to be incredible. 

Please pray for us! This is a fast moving trip with lots to do. I'll be posting updates, pictures and video on my blog so keep checking back or sign up to receive the email updates. 

Watch this music video of my buddy, Jon Egan of the Desperation band who will be in Swaziland in May. It's inspiring! 

OFFICIAL-Light Up the World Music Video from Desperation Band on Vimeo.

December 10, 2009

Why Christmas Should be About Orphans Like Hiatt

This little girl absolutely melted my heart. Her orphanage, Kolmbocha, is far from the capital city in Ethiopia. I asked the director, "When was the last time you had any visitors?" His answer? Eight years. My hope this Christmas is that sweet little girls like Hiatt won't be forgotten by my friends and family here in the US. This orphanage is available for sponsorship by your community. There's 100 kids waiting. Email me if you're interested: [email protected].

Also, you can give a gift of hope this Christmas at Make a gift in honor of someone special this Christmas--a gift that brings hope to orphans like Hiatt.

Meet Hiatt from Children's HopeChest on Vimeo.