Caroline emanates joy, hope, and love. Greeting those she meets with a smile and a, “hello my brother” or “hello my sister,” she brings light to all of her interactions. Her enthusiasm extends to her faith. She recently moved to Timajan, a village outside of Hihéatro, Togo. Her husband, who is in the military, was relocated to Timajan so he could work in the military camp near the village. Rather than continue with life as usual, Caroline decided to truly invest in her new community. She and her husband started a church plant in the village that now has over 25 members. Within the church, Caroline also began a savings group.
For the members, the group is a place where they can learn about using money wisely, discuss plans about the future, and give each other advice. But just as importantly, these groups are places of empowerment where members reclaim their own voices making decisions that directly affect themselves, their families, and their communities. Through these groups, members become a sounding board to one another, freely discussing the most innovative and responsible ways to use their savings. After open discussion, the women pray over the person receiving the money that they may use it for the glory of God.
Love is a central theme in Caroline’s life—her love for her neighbor, the poor, and the church. As a primary school teacher, she feels called to help kids make their futures brighter. Becoming a church facilitator through Chalmers’ ASSET Program is a natural way for Caroline to continue her outpouring of love for others. Her desire to see others filled with God’s joy is what drives her to help churches start these economic ministries that bring God’s reconciling power to those living in poverty.