Zomba, Malawi

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Harare

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In-field mentoring in Lesotho

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With Malibongwe in the Transkei

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Abundant Life Seed Annual Report

To us at Abundant Life Seed, the past year up to the end of March 2011 has been an exciting time in which we experienced the goodness and truthfulness of God in many ways.

Non-Profit Organization

On the 11th of February 2010, Abundant Life Seed was officially registered as a non- profit organisation. The need for this was simply to establish proper and corporate Governance and accountability, as to what is done with donations received, and also to have more structural and strategic insight input and insight from fellow men, as people sharing the same vision of equipping the poorest of poor farmers, to uplift them, both physically and spiritually.

Activity Report

In the few months prior to our official registration as NPO, a number of trainings in Farming God’s Way were done, some locally in Cape Town and others in other African countries. These trainings are given free of cost to the people (remember that we are working with mostly the poorest of the poor).

In February and March of 2010, Wilhelm Els attended the launch of the official DVD training series for Farming God’s Way in Port Elizabeth, as well as the annual meeting for the Farming Gods Way stewardship team. We as Abundant Life Seed want to congratulate and thank Grant & Nikki Dryden and the board of Bountiful Grains Trust, for their absolute unselfishness, as they poured themselves into establishing this much needed equipping tool.

Shortly after that, Wilhelm left for some of the Southern African countries, like Malawi and Zambia where he did more trainings and follow up by means of field visits to some of the people that have been trained by him previously.

Let me share some testimony about the effect of the work done. It is about a young man by the name of William Malle, who was born and raised in Machinga, Malawi. Due to difficult circumstances in his home village and country, he came to Cape Town to try and find work and income, like so many other people from our country and others, this young man had access to farming land back at home, but due to a lack of knowledge and poor practices, thought he could not make a living from that piece of land. This of course is not true.

After William attended a training in Cape Town, he realised he should go back to his home village and go and utilise the land and resources that God had already provided to him in order to make a sustainable living for him and his family. Not only did William go back and start faithfully farming his land, this young man was given a vision to serve into his own community, that stretches over a vast and outstretched piece of land, equipping them with the same knowledge and hope as he has.

William then asked Wilhelm, to come and do a training for the people in his community. This was done in March 2010. A follow up and field visits were done six months later, during the round trip of Southern Africa during September and October. This was followed up by another training for the community as well as some field visits during March of 2011. What really touched my heart was the Chief of this area, who attended all the training sessions and upon field visits proved to be a model farmer in adopting and executing Farming God’s Way as a way of living, actively promoting and encouraging his people to embrace, what they have received.

This is only one of a number of testimonies that we have, that to me, Wilhelm, is so encouraging, to see the change in people’s lives. It is stories and testimonies like these given to us, that keeps one motivated and makes the “sacrifice” of being away from home for many days and sometimes weeks at a time, easier, simply because there is purpose in what we do.

After the Southern Africa trip, Wilhelm also went to Kenya, where a community was trained in a place called Naroosura, in Masai land, this community is constantly followed up by Rob and Cindy Hallen, from America.

During July 2010 and early August, Wilhelm went to Burundi as well as Rwanda where a number of trainings were conducted, all of those sites are followed up and monitored by people living in those countries. Follow up trainings are still being planned.

In September a very successful infield mentoring was fielded out in Lesotho, and there, Wilhelm served an one of the Mentors. Four new trainers were accredited and are now serving into different communities all over South-Africa and Africa. As already mentioned, this was followed up by the round trip of Southern Africa where many trainings in many communities took place, along with field visits.

You will notice these round trips occur mainly during two periods of the year: one before the planting season and one at the end of the season just upon harvesting and post harvesting. This seems to be the best times to visit people on their fields as well as training-wise leaving them with enough time to still prepare their fields in time. These trips take anything between six and eight weeks at a time.

During January 2011, we had another great meeting amongst the stewardship team of Farming God’s Way in Port Elizabeth and in February visited Lesotho on a follow up to visit a seed producer and from there to the former Transkei or Eastern Cape in South Africa. We are really excited to see what the Lord is doing in terms of opening up doors for the implementation of Farming God’s Way in that part of our country. The people on the ground level are so hungry and open to be trained. A strong thrust into the Eastern Cape over the next few years is planned.

We are also looking to establish a more permanent training base and demo site in Cape Town area, negotiations to that effect were started with the local Government.

All in all we are thankful for what has been done and achieved over the past year,
more than that we are grateful.

Thanks

We therefore want to thank everyone who faithfully stood with us in prayer, and to those who encouraged us in so many ways, as well as those that contributed financially, towards the this important cause, whereby the poor and needy, mostly black farmers in South-Africa as well as the rest of Africa is served, with FREE knowledge as to how they could become sustainable and profitable as farmers and at the same time, be set free from bondages in their lives in order to receive the Abundant Life in Christ.

Above all, we want to thank our heavenly Father for enabling us.

Lastly our books were audited and are open and available to anyone who has interest and would want to see them, you are most welcome to contact me.

In Christ at your service,

Wilhelm Els
(on behalf of Abundant Life Seed)

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Training at Nkhoma

Wonderful training time with Hennie Smit at Nkhoma. Wilhelm and Carl did the gospel preaching and theory training and then Hennie did the in-field training. Many gave the lives to Christ, and Hennie’s field of mielies was a wonder!

(2011/03/21)

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The lake and the road to Nkhoma

We travelled to Eagle’s Nest in Monkey Bay for a days camping at beautiful Lake Malawi. Gorgeous views, beautiful swimming, and a bit of rain… Judah had fun chasing the lizards and a huge water monitor, and we thoroughly enjoyed a ride in a makoro (dugout canoe) to an island where the water was teaming with brightly coloured fish and where fish eagles were hunting nearby.

The next morning we took the road climbing out to the higher land heading to Nkhoma via Dedza.

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Visiting Pieter Loots in Mangochi

We were only one day in Mangochi, we stayed with Pieter Loots — a strong and faithful missionary to the Yao people of Malawi. We did some field visits in the pouring rain, walking over treacherously slippery mud. The field visit was accompanied by the music of much laughter from the Christian Yao people with us. With Pieter’s skilful driving we avoided becoming stuck in the mud, but it was a close thing especially when passing vehicles on those narrow roads and unforgiving mud on either side! There were wonderful testimonies of God’s faithfulness in blessing the faithful in their fields.

We also gained a new respect for rice farmers! Rice farming is back breaking work.

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Machinga Training

The training time was arranged by the Malle family in the Greenline Movement’s hall. It went well, and was well attended with an old muslim chief giving an impassioned encouragement to everyone there to follow Farming God’s Way because it had proved itself in his field. Much spiritual bondage lies over that valley, but the gospel was preached and God’s kingdom is advancing as people look to Him in faith.

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Machinga field visits

After a detour to Zomba mountain, we arrived at Machinga and found William Malle’s house where we were to stay. Their generous hospitality humbled us. These people know how to give!

The following day we went around to several “gardens” (aka farms) on field visits with William and his father Benard Malle. Some of it was very encouraging, but several showed a half-hearted implementation of Farming God’s Way, and disappointingly in William Malle’s garden he planted the bulk of it with seed kept from the previous years harvest, but that seed was a genetically modified hybrid which can’t bear seed, so the mielies were deformed and all his hard labour wasted. 🙁 Well not totally wasted of course, it still helped restore the soil.

Afterwards Judah and I went with Benard and William on a “jolly walk” up the hill to get a good view of Machinga.

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