MEKONG SUB-REGION MINORITY CHURCH MOBILIZATION PROJECT (MCMP)
The rural, mainly ethnic minority communities of the upper Mekong Sub-region (MSR) are not equipped to deal with the massive socio-economic changes that are happening all around them, many of these changes resulting from the new ASEAN plan for Economic Cooperation in the Greater Mekong Sub-Region. Poverty, economic disparities between countries and limited job prospects in rural areas are resulting in an ever increasing flow of people within and between the countries of the MSR. Large numbers of people are migrating to seek employment in nearby cities or in the growing economies of Thailand and China. Here they often experience discrimination and are at significant risk of exploitation. Communities are disintegrating and traditional cultures, values and support networks are being lost.
In addition, the rural, mainly ethnic minority communities of the upper MSR are primarily subsistence farmers. They are not equipped to deal with the socio-economic changes that are happening all around them, pushing them towards a market economy. For many, a lack of understanding of markets results in poor or failed agricultural investments, debt and ever increasing financial needs.
MMF desires to see a movement arise in the upper Mekong Sub-Region where local ethnic leaders of faith and their community churches and organizations are empowered to be involved in holistic and integral mission, reaching out to the poor and disadvantaged. We aim to help bring this change about by:
- Developing the capacity of local churches and community groups to engage in holistic ministry with their communities
- Increasing and expanding the leadership influence of significant community members
- Facilitating increased cooperation and networking amongst like-minded organizations
- Empowering and mobilizing the church and community members to engage in sustainable, holistic community development practices, resulting in an increase in quality of life for all community members
The evidence is already mounting that traditional ethnic minority communities cannot survive and thrive as the world around them changes and begins to encroach upon what has been considered “their world”. However, this project believes that along with these very real risks and dangers, the door of opportunity is also opening. Through this door the Truth of the existence of the Loving and Powerful God can bring radical transformation to individuals and communities as they experience Him in practical ways and embrace the goodness of His Kingdom.