Projects like The Kenya Pig Project wouldn’t be successful in bringing hope and restoration to vulnerable communities without the work, dedication, and expertise of our global partners. Since they live and work in the communities where they serve, they’re uniquely positioned to solve complex problems and usher in solutions. When you partner with Mission ONE, you’re empowering these leaders to make meaningful changes that will last generations.
We’re honored to introduce you to Wilfred, Mission ONE’s local partner in Kenya and head of the pig project. Wilfred is in his late 60’s and a local pastor. He and his team have played integral roles in the development and execution of The Kenya Pig Project, providing an opportunity for Kijabe Town to collectively participate and contribute to the growth and economic development of their peoples.
The People Behind The Pig Farm
Mission ONE: Who are the employees of the pig farm, and what do they do?
Wilfred: My son Zack works alongside John and Daniel. They are employed full-time by the pig project and are able to support their families because of this job. John and Daniel make sure the area where the pigs live is clean. They make sure they are fed multiple times a day, keep the pigs hydrated, and help with security for the pigs and the complex. They also help when myself, and other pastors go evangelize in different communities. They play a huge role in [what] we do in our churches and our community.
Mission ONE: How long have they been part of your team?
Wilfred: They have been part of this partnership in Kenya for the last four years. They did not have the luxury of attending school to pursue a career they were passionate about, so they would have no job opportunities.
Mission ONE: How has having a job impacted their lives so far?
Wilfred: The way they provided for their family was by stealing and getting in fights. They do not know why I decided to take a chance on them, but they feel blessed that I did… Knowing they can provide for their families, and they are able to do it the right way, can also be an example to their kids to live life the right way. Them being able to provide for their families brings honor to them.
Mission ONE: Can you share more about the families of the people at the pig farm?
Wilfred: My son, Zack, has 2 children. John and Daniel are both married and have children of their own. Daniel has 4 kids and John has 2. We built small homes for staff on the property next to the pigs so they can be closer to their jobs and not have to worry about paying for a place to live.
The Importance of Hope
When people lack opportunities to contribute within their community, they can’t create a good life for themselves or their family, hope can be lost.
Mission ONE: How can providing a job provide hope for people?
Wilfred: One thing Daniel and John have done is teach their family to put their hope in Jesus and not the world. Most kids in the community look at their parents’ life and believe that life will be the same for them. A lot of the young people watch on tv or hear people on the radio that are rich and all they do is dream or wish their lives were like theirs.
Mission ONE: Why does this happen?
Wilfred: For a lot of these kids, wishing to be something like a doctor, a professor, or a professional athlete is something they can only dream about. They just don’t have the opportunities or ways to reach those goals unless they leave and go somewhere else. Their parents can’t even find jobs, so it’s hard for them to think of doing something that requires an education. Of course, when they see famous people they want to be like them because they want to have all the things they have.
Making A Difference
The pig project is a business that is creating resources for the local ministry, but more than that, it is bringing hope to the community and shows young children that they can create a better future for themselves—without leaving Kijabe Town.
Mission ONE: How has the pig project grown so far?
Wilfred: We went from having less than 30 total pigs to over 140 pigs. The Lord has blessed us tremendously. The pig project has had its challenges, but it has all had a lot of fruit. [It] has provided us with a new way to reach non-believers and be able to provide for our community… allowing us to dream of what we can do to make our communities better.
Mission ONE: How can you share God’s love with your people?
Wilfred: Everything we do is through Jesus Christ our Saviour. We lead by example and we want people to see Jesus when they see anything we are doing. We are having conversations with non-believers and believers of ways to make a better life for themselves. As a team we go home to home to pray for people, and we meet people where they are. We treat people with respect, and we encourage them to keep pushing on no matter what they are going through. We invite people to church gatherings and we invite people to learn from what we are doing like the pig ministry.
Most of the families in Kijabe Town are extremely poor. Education is rarely a priority for their youth because they can barely afford to put food on the table. Many families choose to send their children away for better opportunities, leaving Kijabe Town in a cycle of poverty. But when there are local opportunities, children can find hope in their own community, creating a better future.
Mission ONE: How can you help motivate the youth of your town to not leave?
Wilfred: By providing school opportunities, more job opportunities and having successful businesses in the community can show them that it is possible to do it.
Because of the lack of resources, parents are trying to do everything in their power to get their kids out in hopes they will have a better life. They don’t have jobs, most kids cannot afford school, there aren’t any activities they can get involved in— a lot of them feel stuck. In many cases these are the reasons young kids are on the streets stealing, getting drunk, and causing trouble.
Breaking Cycles By Doing Godly Work
When Wilfred was young, he too lacked job opportunities in his hometown, so he spent most of his time on the streets. Wilfred says he would watch his dad get drunk all the time because there wasn’t anything to do in their community. Wilfred assumed he would grow up to do the same—and he did, for some time.
Mission ONE: How did you overcome and break this cycle in your life?
Wilfred: What changed my life was an opportunity to attend Bible school and learn about Jesus. This is where I met Bob, the founder of Mission ONE. Being involved in this changed my life and now I have an organization that is helping hundreds of people in Kenya.
Mission ONE: How can the youth find a new way to hope for their future?
Wilfred: They are seeing people like Daniel and John provide for their families with no education, they are slowly believing that there is a purpose for their lives. The biggest thing for them is, they are seeing people in the community that care about helping them have a better life. Things in the community will never be perfect, but seeing people that want to make a difference, putting their words into action, makes people in the community more hopeful for a better future.
Mission ONE: What would you add regarding the impact this project has made?
Wilfred: The lord has been very faithful to our community even with the little that we have. People are giving their lives to Jesus every day, and we are getting to build relationships with non-believers every day. He continues to open doors for our projects and ministries in ways we could not imagine.
Find out more about how Mission ONE and our global partners like Wilfred are empowering people to be more like the Kingdom.
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