“What motivates me is my experience with the present situation in our country. Unless we work to become self-supporting, it is practically impossible for us to gain selfhood. This is why I deem it necessary to work with rural community members to produce their food and eat the food they grow.”
Helena Koko Ben is a project manager at the Voinjama Free Pentecostal Health Center. Her community is ready to help in times of difficulty. They are open-minded and show respect no matter which culture, religious, economic, political, social, or tribal background one comes from. Challenges faced by the community include the lack of quality in road connections and electricity. Moreover, there is a shortage of essential drugs and medical supplies, and unemployment is high.
As the agriculture project manager, Helena plays a role in her community’s agricultural self-sufficiency. In one of her projects, she plants 4 acres of cassava, involving the whole community throughout the cassava lifecycle. She also volunteers at the local health center, specializing in maternal care.
At ARI, Helena is excited to gain new knowledge on servant leadership, learn how to produce more food at a rural level by using local resources without chemicals, and interact with other people of different races, colors, and religious denominations. This learning will help her encourage and organize rural people to work together, build upon their skills and talents, and increase productivity.
The Voinjama Free Pentecostal Health Center helps provide drugs, medical supplies, nutritional foods and supplements, workforce development, and infrastructure development. Their mission is to fulfill Christ’s commission. Since 2019, they have been engaged in laboratory investigations and medical treatment such as pediatric health, vaccination, and HIV/Aid diagnoses.