Elikya is the Lingala word for “hope.” A Major initiative of the CECU (the French acronym for the Evangelical Free Church of the Congo), Elikya started as a ministry to widows through the CECU women’s movement, and is now a fully sanctioned program of the entire CECU. This program is designed for the many widows in the church, who need housing and training in various skills such as sewing, gardening, raising animals, and other work skills. Older orphans and unwed mothers who have had a few educational opportunities, will also be eligible to lear life skills and receive job training such as farming, animal husbandry, carpentry, metal work, mechanics, etc. Special emphasis will be placed on teen girls who are more vulnerable in the culture, and need training for life. In addition there are huge numbers of handicapped people from polio, amputations, blindness, cerebral palsy, etc., who would like to learn job skills compatible with their needs.
The Lord provided the CECU with well over 500 acres of land not far from CECU national offices in Gemena on which to develop the Elikya project. The Elikya Center in Gemena is only a start. Most widows and orphans never travel more than 50 miles from home, so smaller Elikya centers are needed in other parts of Ubangi to serve the needs of the many widows and orphans who live far from Gemena.
VCL has teamed up with with the CECU, to help provide materials such as backpacks and tools for the Elikya center. At specific points throughout the year VCL will be have special projects in which the VCL church family comes together to provide tools, backpacks, and various other needs such as monetary needs and prayer. VCL is blessed to have a part in a great ministry in the Congo.