"Reaching people for Christ: helping thousands of people out of poverty into a sustainable future"

Meet Sarkis

2017 Update and Hopes for 2018

BULGARIAThank -you -Sarkis

The old 2017 is gone, the new 2018 has come - but nothing new has happened in the real daily lives of the ordinary people in Bulgaria. As the Bible says: "There is nothing new under the sun."

The problems are too many: low salaries, slow reforms in education and health care, bloated administration, red tape, corruption, an ineffective judicial system, the large and non-integrated Roma minority, growing nationalism, new increased costs of water, electricity, basic foodstuff. A few days ago, Bulgaria started its Presidency of the Council of the European Union. But Bulgarians do not believe this will change anything or improve their lives. As a result of the despair in the nation, more and more Bulgarians (young students and workers) are leaving the country in search of a better life. Thus, the population in Bulgaria continues to decrease with one of the fastest rates in Europe, with a greater proportion of older people. In 2017, the number of Bulgarians was reduced by almost 1% to 7 million. The number of people employed in Bulgaria is less than the number of those that work abroad.

The motto of the recently begun first-ever Bulgarian Presidency of the EU is: "United we are strong."

Unfortunately, our nation is divided. Most people suffer from lawlessness, corruption, criminality. 40% of employed Bulgarians remain poor. Every fifth Bulgarian lives in poverty, every third lives with material deprivation. Thus, Bulgaria remains the poorest country in the EU.

Only God who is seated over the sun on the throne has the power to change the situation and He says, "I am making all things new!"

These words are trustworthy and true. Indeed, our hope is directed to Him who is the only one who could change the lives of everyone and who can sit us with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus.

Knowing this, Mission Without Borders in Bulgaria, through different projects, works to help and improve people's lives, showing God's love and giving them a hope. According to our projects' portfolio, we help young vulnerable families, the homeless, people with disabilities, students, even prisoners.

We continue the development of our two communities in Krupnik and Gotse Delchev in the south-west of the country. Last year we started after school training for children who are struggling with education in both areas. With God's help we achieved very good results, and their teachers in the school expressed their gratitude and admiration for the work of Mission Without Borders. The vocational, educational and literacy courses are also an important part of our strategy to assist people in learning and improving their abilities. Praise the Lord, some of our beneficiaries found a job after they finished our professional courses. Let us hope that this year, more beneficiaries will be able to fulfil their potential in some area of work. In 2018 we hope to finish the renovation of our Community centers to ensure the normal implementation of our current and future activities.

We plan to build a greenhouse to increase the impact and sustainability of our agriculture project. We also plan to build a pig farm to help the families from our communities achieve a certain level of self-sufficiency. New self-sufficiency projects will be implemented for families in the Family to Family (F2F) program; several families have already reached self-sufficiency and after the monitoring period they were withdrawn from the program. Our efforts are always aimed at raising the quality of our activities and programs, training people in different skills, and monitoring the projects' activities. 

We will not forget our work with the disabled, lonely, abandoned children and the homeless, and thus we will serve our Savior.

We thank our Lord for the wide doors He has opened for us in the Bulgarian prisons. The people there are rejected by society and badly need God's grace and mercy. So, we will continue to visit this neglected target group and to share God's love in these places.

We praise God for His abundant blessings and mercies. There is still much work to be done and ways to change and improve our activities but again, we trust in the Lord and go ahead with His guidance.

Sarkis,  MWB Bulgaria field manager