Record Number of Baylor Missions Teams Serving in Eleven Countries in May
WACO, Texas (May 18, 2018) – This summer, Baylor Missions is sending its largest group ever – 19 teams of 294 students, faculty, staff and alumni – to 11 different countries, including England, Ghana, Guatemala, Italy, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Puerto Rico, South Africa, Uganda and Zambia, as well as two domestic locations in Dallas and Washington, D.C.
Through long-term global partnerships that foster servant-leadership and nurture students’ spiritual growth, Baylor student teams are giving their gifts and talents to serve others through the University by actively addressing health, community and leadership development, education, hunger, immigration and human trafficking, hunger, animal welfare and much more. Each team has a discipline-specific focus to its mission project, with students actively integrating their faith with service and learning.
Six additional teams will be on missions this summer in India and Zambia (nursing), Guatemala (Line Camp experience), England (business) and the Rio Grande Valley (American Medical Student Association).
“We look to these global partners to guide our teams and projects that our students can invest in and will be impactful in the long term,” said Holly Tate, assistant director for global missions at Baylor. “As a result of these experiences we hope that students return to campus or the professional world with a renewed sense of purpose and motivation to go deeper into their disciplines to think about community and global impact, as well as have a better understanding of how faith informs all areas of their lives.”
England Accounting Team: This 22-member team of accounting students from Baylor’s Hankamer School of Business will focus on a variety of business consultations. In Brighton, students are partnering with One Church Brighton, consulting with the social justice ministry and helping develop a strategic plan for an ancient farmhouse donated to the church. In London, students are partnering with Kahaila Coffee House to conduct an internal control audit of the original coffee house location and train local nonprofits in best practices of accounting. Other teams will work to update the technology infrastructure for financial reports and develop a strategic plan for the new coffee house franchise location.
Ghana Education Team: This team of Baylor students from various academic disciplines will focus on education and community health in rural Ghana. Students will work alongside teachers in the village of Kyerekrom and participate in cultural-sharing activities, which will center on literacy and building reading comprehension. Students also will present interactive lessons on health matters, such as physical health, nutrition, safety and mental health awareness. All members of the team will participate in a community health fair, where they will share care packages. Students also will support Kyerekrom faculty by providing school supplies and additional books for the school library.
Guatemala Kappa Kappa Gamma Team: Fourteen Baylor KKG members and two Baylor staff leaders will travel to Antigua to work with special needs children at Los Gozosos: Joy Filled Homes. They will interact with children and help caregivers with feeding, washing or simply being present and joyful with the children. They also will help with additional projects around the homes.
Guatemala Neuroscience and PreMed Team: A team of 12 students, two faculty members and two medical doctors will serve in clinics and medical outreach activities in Guatemala City and surrounding rural cities through a partnership with Life of Hope Ministries and Dustin’s Dream Memorial Foundation. The partnership with Dustin’s Dream is special to Baylor Missions as it was created in memory of former Baylor student Dustin Chamberlain and his heart for medical missions. The Dustin Chamberlain Memorial Foundation is covering medicine and medical supplies for the clinics, as well as student scholarships.
Guatemala Pre-Vet Team: Nine Baylor students pursuing careers in veterinary medicine and two leaders from Baylor Pre-Veterinary Medical Association will serve at Animal AWARE in Sumpango. The team will work with more than 300 rescue animals, assist in medical care and work on projects for the shelter.
Guatemala Soccer Team: The Baylor women’s soccer team will return to Guatemala for the second time. While in Guatemala City, they will partner with Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) Guatemala staff in leading soccer camps and empowering the girls of Guatemala with the love of Jesus Christ. They will conduct several clinics and play in matches as they help older girls improve their game and glorify God while doing so.
Italy Cultural Explorations Team: Using photography and other forms of documentary exploration, this team of eight students will experience Sicilian culture while focusing on the challenges of immigration. Students will use visual storytelling to engage with subjects from many backgrounds and faith traditions, reaching out and caring for others within local communities and the wider world. Sicily, through its unique cultural history and present-day challenges, including a wave of unplanned immigration, provides such opportunity.
Kenya Communication Sciences & Disorders Team: A team of 12 speech-language pathology students and two leaders will travel to Nairobi to provide speech, language and feeding assessments and intervention at the Acorn School, a residential and day school for children with special needs. Students will work with teachers, parents and the local university and use their discipline-specific skills in a multicultural setting and learn how to integrate their faith with career and service.
Kenya Community Development Team: A multidisciplinary team of 10 students will share and demonstrate effective and compassionate approaches to education in schools for impoverished children. Students will visit urban and rural schools and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in and around Nairobi, including three days with Naomi’s Village, a vibrant NGO founded by Baylor alumni. These creative and artistic students are hoping to use their talents to bring joy and avenues for emotional support and outlets by engaging impoverished and traumatized children through the sharing of songs, books and art projects.
Kenya Women’s Leadership Team: An interdisciplinary group of nine female Baylor students and two Baylor staff will provide leadership training for ministries and groups that aid women in Nairobi, helping women feel empowered, encouraged and worthy of love. The team will engage with various partnerships, including the Kazuri Bead Company, a business for single mothers; Amani Ya Juu, a linen and jewelry business for refugee women; Winnie’s Pure Health; AHCP Kibera School; and Nairobi Chapel’s KINARA program.
Malaysia Music Team: Thirty-seven students and several Baylor faculty will travel to Malaysia for their fourth trip sponsored by the Center for Christian Music Studies at Baylor. Throughout the spring, the group prepared music to share with their friends in Malaysia, including a variety of choral anthems. The students will split into groups, offering practical training sessions on guitar, voice, keyboard, choir, strings, reading music and reading Scripture in worship. Ministers, church leaders and youth will attend these sessions in several cities across Sabah, Malaysia.
Mexico Volleyball Team: The Baylor volleyball team will focus on impacting the lives of families rising out of poverty by working alongside Hope Sports and Hope for Homes in Rosarito, Mexico. While there, they will assist a professional builder in constructing a home for a family who owns land but needs help to build their home as they look to transform the lives of their children as they grow
Puerto Rico Athletics and Relief Team: Baylor Sports Ministry has annually participated in international service trips to serve and fellowship with local communities. The main focus for this year’s experience is to work with a church, Iglesia Bautista Metropolis, in Carolina, Puerto Rico, to assist in the restoration of homes and other areas within the community devastated by Hurricane Maria. Student-athletes also will have the opportunity to fellowship with local schools and participate in sports-related activities.
South Africa BRH Team: The 19 students with Baylor Religious Hour Choir and two advisers will travel to South Africa to share their love of music while working alongside organizations, such as Genesis Music Academy, Norwegian Settlers Church and Rehoboth Children’s Village. BRH choir also will have the opportunity to minister to children who have been affected by HIV/AIDS. The mission partner in South Africa is a Baylor graduate and former member of BRH who is helping the choir to spread the love of Jesus while in the Port Shepstone area.
Uganda Christian Pre-Health Fellowship (CPF) Team: A group of 15 aspiring medical personnel students, supported by a faculty and staff member, will serve for two weeks at Restoration Gateway (RG), a Christian organization founded by Baylor graduates Tim and Janice McCall. While at RG, their primary responsibilities will be developing relationships with children, running a children’s camp for three days while the children, most of whom are orphans, are on a break between terms and shadowing a variety of medical personnel in the recently opened 180-bed hospital.
Uganda Engineering (BUV) Team: Baylor Engineering students, including members of the student group Baylor BUV (Basic Utility Vehicle), will partner with Village of Hope to build a BUV at the vocational training school housed just south of Gulu. Nine Baylor students will team up with about 20 VOH vocational students – all former child soldiers from the country’s recent civil wars – to fabricate the vehicle from parts and supplies sourced locally in Uganda. Baylor students will gain experience working in a different culture and apply their background in engineering to design the vehicle while VOH students will use welding, fabrication and automotive maintenance to build a running vehicle that can be used across rural Uganda, aiding families with hauling crops, water, people, medical supplies and more. The team’s hope is to help the children of Uganda with marketable skills and possible opportunities while developing a long-term partnership.
Zambia Business Consulting Team: This team of 11 Baylor students will work with Family Legacy to serve orphans in Zambia who have finished high school and are taking a gap year before launching the next phase of their lives. This team will help the young graduates identify their personal strengths and think through a career plan that leverages those strengths. Since many of these young people will become entrepreneurs or work in businesses, the Baylor team will give the students an overview of business, with a special focus on creating an environment that welcomes customers. In years past, teams have been able to connect Family Legacy students with local employers through an on-site career fair, giving the students an opportunity to get real-life experience preparing resumes and professional interviewing.
Dallas (TX) Sigma Phi Lambda Team: Sigma Phi Lambda “Sisters for the Lord” will be in the Arlington and Dallas areas serving World Vision, Mission Arlington, RescueHer and Genesis Women’s Shelter. These organizations strive to impact the community in areas that are dear to the hearts of many Phi Lamb members: providing care and love for women and children who have been in abusive situations and/or have been trafficked and children in other countries who have become orphans. This team hopes to come alongside these organizations and serve with them in a variety of capacities.
Washington D.C. - Hunger in America Team: A group of eight Baylor students in partnership with the Texas Hunger Initiative (THI) at Baylor will spend a week in Washington, D.C., to learn how THI and Baylor are building and supporting public-private partnerships to end domestic hunger. Students will dialogue with thought leaders at think tanks and nonprofits, advocate on Capitol Hill for effective programs and meet Baylor alumni who are making a difference on issues of food insecurity. They will learn about different types of interventions used to address hunger and put these interventions into practice by volunteering and serving at organizations, such as DC Central Kitchen, Church of the Epiphany, the United States Department of Agriculture, the No Kid Hungry Campaign and more.
by Liesbeth Powers, student newswriter, 254-710-6805
ABOUT BAYLOR MISSIONS
The purpose of Baylor Missions is to shape Baylor’s faithful engagement with Waco and the world by creating intentional opportunities to integrate faith, learning and service within a broad Christian worldview.
As part of the Office of Spiritual Life at Baylor University, Our Mission is to nurture theological depth, spiritual wholeness and missional living in the students, staff and faculty at Baylor University by offering integrated formational programming, transformative missional experiences, competent pastoral care and worship that is responsive to the Christian Tradition and sensitive to the culture.
Global Missions collaborates with faculty and staff from a variety of disciplines and backgrounds along with our global partners in order to implement spiritually rich & challenging experiences for our students. It is our hope that the students who participate in our trips not only enjoy the experience (which is important), but also discover a sense of vocation and calling as they see first-hand how they can use their discipline to serve.
ABOUT BAYLOR UNIVERSITY
Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 17,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.