Calamity upon Calamity - Timor Update
Prayers for Timor
The year 2020 started with talk about the African Swine Flu wiping out thousands of pigs in neighbor country East Timor. A virus being a virus could not be contained with geographical borders and as such also swept through West Timor. For months we have been living with the stench of dead pig carcasses thrown out in the bush.
The ASF outbreak has caused economic distress, even though the virus is not harmful for humans, many people are afraid of consuming pork normally a source of protein used on a daily basis.
While the ASF virus was making its kill, news lines reported another virus developing rapidly in Wuhan knowns corona virus. This virus too made its entrance in Indonesia hitting hardest the bigger cities, thankfully the number of positive cases in NTT are quite low. Yet the economic impact is enormous with markets being closed people can no longer sell their produce in which they’ve invested time and money.
On top of these virus outbreaks, West Timor has had very little rain this past rainy season resulting in the loss of crops. Many rice and corn farmers did not harvest at all, no cash is a big problem, and no food is disastrous!
This situation is impacting families on a big scale, hunger, health problems, depression and despair are the reality for many already living on the fringe of poverty. Please pray for this situation that the Lord in His goodness will sustain and provide giving hope through His word.
Because of the current Covid -19 situation, schools have been suspended. The government provides online assistance for children at home to be accessed however this is a challenge for parents in the NTT province where many cannot afford data to access and/or do not have access to Wi-Fi connection. The Elpida teachers are doing what they can by visiting the students and providing tasks to be done at home, yet again limited resources prevent effective learning.