Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves – International Needs

speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves   international needs

Submitted by International Needs Canada

(Students at Ephphata School for the Deaf in the DR Congo)

“Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those being crushed. Yes, speak up for the poor and helpless, and see that they get justice.”   Proverbs 31:8-9

International Needs was founded over 40 years ago by Dr. Ray Harrison. Dr. Ray was invited to Bangladesh in 1974 by Rev. Adhikary when the country was going through incessant floods and calamities. People were spending days and nights on the side of the road waiting to be admitted to hospitals, which were overcrowded.  Observing the horrible condition of the people, Dr. Ray broke down and wept. Embracing Rev. Adhikary, he cried, “Can’t we do something to help these people?” Thus was born the work of International Needs.

Today, International Needs has programs and projects in many parts of the world, impacting the lives of vulnerable children and their families through child sponsorship, skills training, and community development programs. With a focus on sustainability, our programs and initiatives must fit naturally with the communities we serve and have a positive long-term impact on the health and well-being of the community. As a Christian development organization, we work with indigenous partners, to help the most vulnerable reach their full God-given potential.

Children like the students at Ephphata School for the Deaf in Lubumbashi, DR Congo, where decades of civil war, conflict, and poverty have posed many challenges. It is estimated that over 5 million people have died as a result of conflict, preventable diseases, and malnutrition. Deaf children face great challenges in the DR Congo due to a lack of understanding in the culture. The deaf are often thought of as unintelligent and worthless. Many are left to fend for themselves and have very little hope for a better future. Ephphata School for the Deaf seeks to empower Deaf children and young adults by giving them a quality education and trade, enabling them to become self-supporting, productive members of society.

(Luc in the carpentry workshop)

When Luc Tshinyoka was two and a half years old his parents noticed that he suddenly stopped talking. He was not ill nor had he fallen or hurt himself. For no apparent reason, their son had become deaf. Medical doctors were unable to restore Luc’s hearing. The family was devastated. Then Luc’s parents heard of Ephphata School for the Deaf and were hopeful that the school would be able to equip their son to live a more fulfilled life. Luc proved to be a bright student and enjoyed learning. He took up photography and art and over time was able to sell some of his creations. Luc is now learning tailoring and carpentry as he nears the end of his education at Ephphata School.  


“We are so thankful to God for the guidance and help our son has received at Ephphata School. He is confident and hardworking and is learning how to be independent.” – Justin Tshinyoka, father

One of International Needs’ programs in Nepal focuses on the wellbeing of women. Women in Nepal lead a difficult life, particularly in rural communities where a patriarchal society and ignorance of the law hinders their progress towards equality. Although the situation for girls and women in urban areas has been improving, Nepali women in general are given inferior education compared to their male counterparts, and are forced to work for less pay or no pay at all. They are often abused emotionally and physically, which further contributes to their negative self-image and low personal expectations.


The Lydia Vocational Centre has ministered to hundreds of women over the years. The Centre teaches literacy, sewing, preventative health care, first aid, good nutrition, sanitation in the home, and how to prevent domestic abuse. One of the most innovative elements of the Lydia Centre is that each graduate is trained to teach other women and commits to sharing her knowledge and the love of Christ with at least five others in her community, multiplying the impact of the Centre.

I feel so fortunate to be at the Lydia Centre. I’ve learned so much more than how to sew and this will help me for the rest of my life. My future looks a lot brighter.” – Sangita

For more information on the work of International Needs Canada worldwide, please visit our website at www.internationalneeds.ca 


This charity has been certified by the Canadian Council of Christian Charities. Charities that display our Seal of Accountability demonstrate ongoing compliance with high standards of financial and organizational integrity. To find out more about this charity or other Certified charities, visit giveconfidently.ca.