India: Empowerment

The ALC Community College was begun in the aftermath of the 2004 tsunami that devastated southeastern India. Today it serves as a glorious witness to God’s long-term vision. The local Lutheran church founded the institution after local leaders said they wanted their children to have more choices for their future occupations than fishing and living off the sea. Several organizations have joined LPGM as partners in this ministry.

Owned and operated by the Arcot Lutheran Church, ALC Bishop Socrates calls it the “City of Hope.” Courses focus on education that leads to jobs in auto mechanics, electrical wiring, nursing assistants and tailoring.

The college campus is surrounded by a diverse community of Christians, Hindus and Muslims, all living together peacefully. We are proud of this campus and the potential for the college and its students.

The Lebanon Home in Tiruvannamalai is operated and managed by the Arcot Lutheran Church, and provides a safe and productive environment for women who are widowed or abandoned and their children. Forty women live on campus, supporting themselves and their families by weaving in a beautiful weaving house that brings them closer to each other.

If you would like to purchase linens made by the women of the Lebanon Home, stop by or let us know! We often have placemats, runners, napkins, dishcloths, and a variety of kitchen towels.

The Timothy Center for Women & Children Empowerment has been supported by the church with help from LPGM and Danmission. A Child Rights curriculum exists in each of the church’s 94 schools. Each day, staff members travel through town, looking for women and children being forced to work, most for very little money. Some children are referred by those who know about the center. Parents are invited to meetings that introduce rehabilitation programs and try to convince them that the long-term education and training of their children will pay off in far greater ways than the few pennies they earn as child laborers.

In 2014, three construction projects were completed: a dormitory, classrooms and toilets, funded by a grant from Bethel Lutheran Church in Northfield, MN.

Courses include tailoring, computer education, carpentry, advocacy, and other programs. Income generation efforts include a business processing office and a ready-made garment unit. Future efforts may include a community kitchen, wood carving skill training, and seeking assistance from the National skill development program.

With very limited resources, the center is making an impact on these women and children who seem destined for a life of extreme poverty and mistreatment. Children are tutored (many have never attended school), housed and fed. All are taught life and vocation skills that will serve them well and improve their economic status.