HCJB Global: Radio Helps Bring Clean Water, Sanitation to the World
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.—HCJB Global, an evangelical missionary organization integrating broadcast media and health care ministries to serve as the voice and hands of Jesus, is utilizing an unlikely tool in new ways to bring clean water and sanitation to the world: radio. Since a recent water, sanitation and hygiene conference in Ghana, Sub-Saharan Africans are receiving essential training and practical applications for their own locales through the airwaves from radio announcers.
In a concerted effort to meet the critical need of clean water in some of the most remote parts of the world, follow-up training via radio unites two of the main ministries of HCJB Global—HCJB Global Voice and HCJB Global Hands.
HCJB Global Voice refers to the mission’s worldwide media ministries, extending across national boundaries, often entering places where no missionary can go. Efforts are largely concentrated on evangelism and discipleship through radio and other media.
HCJB Global Hands refers to the growing array of health care and community development ministries, working with partners to make health care accessible to needy people in Latin America, Africa and beyond via hospitals, clinics, mobile medical ministries, clean water projects and training for rural health care workers.
The follow-up to the water, sanitation and hygiene conference provides the opportunity for the ministry to integrate the conference training with delivery of information to the grassroots via radio.
“Every day 4,000 children die of water-related diseases. No other single intervention is more likely to have a significant impact on global poverty than the provision of safe water,” said Sheila Leech, the mission’s vice president of international health care. “Adding sanitation and hygiene to clean water raises the improvement in people’s health from 20 percent to 85 percent at relatively little cost and huge impact on human lives. Now that we are able to communicate through radio with people in remote villages about simple tasks that will save their lives, the results are multiplied exponentially.”
Ministry partners from several Christian nonprofits and five countries attended the conference in Abouri, near Accra, Ghana. They participated in Bible studies as a biblical basis for development and innovative teaching methods, including questions, songs, jingles and drama.
HCJB Global intentionally invited radio ministry partners to receive in-person training at the conference with the goal of interesting them in the water, sanitation and hygiene curriculum, which they could translate into a delivery system to teach the principles of sanitation and hygiene through radio spots and programs.
“We value our radio partners as vital in communicating life-saving and life-changing basic principles of sanitation and hygiene. Radio is the most direct avenue to transform communities in the most remote regions,” said Beth Patton, director of priority projects. “We will send teams into villages and communities, but we cannot reach them all. Radio will go where we cannot.”
For 80 years, the passion of HCJB Global has been to make disciples of Christ. Using mass media, health care and education, and working with partners around the world, HCJB Global has ministries in more than 100 countries. The Gospel is aired in more than 120 languages and dialects. Thousands of health care patients are meeting Jesus. Local believers are being trained as missionaries, pastors, broadcasters and health care providers.