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Thanks to your year-end gifts, we met the full $28,850 match by our board! Your support allows us to continue to provide access to quality education — and so much more — in 2022.

Over the past 20 months, the pandemic has tried and tested each and every one of us.

Yet through it all, you have continued providing access to quality education for people at the margins, when people have needed it the most.

Let me tell you about our incredible partnership in Guatemala:

In the cloud forests of central Guatemala, 75% of Q’eqchi’ Maya girls typically drop out of school each year after sixth grade. When they participate in our partner CCFC’s Women in Agroecology Leadership for Conservation program, however, that drop-out rate decreases to less than 5%, thanks in large part to the school scholarships you make possible.

Tara Cahill (center), co-founder of CCFC, cans jam with other staff. Nutrition programs are often taught through hands-on cooking lessons at CCFC.

During the pandemic, CCFC switched from in-person training to using radio waves and cellphone apps like WhatsApp to communicate with students. This actually increased the reach of their program. Girls far and near are now benefiting from their transformative education.

And then there’s our longstanding partnership with the Lutheran Church in the Central African Republic:

This past August we received word that nearly 700 people sought refuge on their church and seminary campuses, due to civil unrest and famine. Within two weeks, our partners were orchestrating a distribution of food and supplies to help these families in need. These lifesaving gifts were made possible through the generosity of friends like you, who understand that while our mission focuses on providing access to education, education is not possible when people are dying of hunger.

When it became clear that there was a dire need for food and basic necessities in Central Africa, we responded. You can continue to provide for the ongoing needs of families.

As the world received reports of the spread of COVID-19, India was at the forefront of the battle.

Nearly half a million lives have been lost, and millions more affected. Students, sponsored by friends like you, were sent away from the safety and security of the Lutheran boarding homes when schools shut down, not to return for more than 600 days. As most are children of migrant farmers, it was not uncommon to be placed in the care of relatives, already pressed for resources. Food scarcity grew.

Students in India took part in outdoor, socially distanced education during the COVID-19 pandemic, even when schools were closed.

And yet thanks to our loyal sponsors, our partners purchased and distributed food and supplies to those in need, and provided safe, outdoor educational activities in the villages. They put their own health on the line to keep our students connected and cared for. Again, this would not have been possible without the generosity of friends like you.

Finally, consider Tanzania, where forced child marriage is still a reality for many girls.

In times of distress and food scarcity, as there is now, forced child marriage increases. More young women have fled from their homes, seeking shelter within the walls of our partner’s Safe House and support of the Safe Initiative.

With your gifts, young women are housed, fed, clothed, provided school tuition, and LOVED; allowing them to safely stay in school rather than becoming child brides.

With your gifts, young women in Tanzania are housed, fed, clothed, provided school tuition, and LOVED; allowing them to safely stay in school rather than becoming child brides.

When times are toughest, we consider what we are most grateful for. We are grateful for YOU. But now, more than ever, we need your unrestricted support.

As we work toward a world where relationships transform boundaries and where all people have the resources and opportunities they need to thrive, would you consider making a year-end gift to allow us to minister where it’s needed most, in times of dire need like now? Your gift will allow us to respond to the needs of students in the coming year, as they continue to suffer the effects of food scarcity, political unrest, natural disasters, and the pandemic.

We’re pleased to share that between today and December 31, our board of directors will MATCH YOUR GIFT (up to $28,850)!

Unrestricted gifts allow us to be nimble in how we respond to the needs of our global neighbors. The pastors, teachers, social workers, retired grandparents, and businesspeople who make up our board are bound together by their belief in the power of education. Education that breaks cycles of abuse, poverty, child marriage, illiteracy, and more.

Will you join them in making your best gift, to advance the work of LPGM as we seek to provide quality education for people at the margins – especially women and girls? Together, we are making a huge difference in the lives of our global neighbors. May God bless you for your love toward these young people!

Author Dan Ruth

Dan Ruth is the executive director of LPGM and an ordained minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

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