Niger

In Niger, Radio reaches out to the people who live far from churches and who cannot read the Bible for themselves. Words of Hope broadcasts are aired from 46 local and regional stations in Niger.

Niger is a hard place to do ministry. One of the poorest countries in the world, the average individual here makes less than $400 per year. The region is heavily Islamic, and a mere 0.3% of the population are Christians. Many Nigeriens also live in isolation. They are frequently illiterate with little access to Biblical teaching.

The country is, however, open to evangelism. Occasional tensions arise between the Muslim and Christian population, but the churches operate under legal protection, and there is a general openness to the teachings of Scripture. Words of Hope supporters are coming alongside the impoverished churches in Niger and helping them to expand their reach through the tool of radio. Words of Hope is also equipping the local church in Niger to offer computer training classes so that individuals can get better jobs to support their families.

“The messages are reliable and tell the truth. Many people listen to the programs. We love the programs on family life, the life of Jesus, and the education of children. These programs help me a lot in my life everyday.

Languages

Niger is 98% Islamic and is ranked among the world’s poorest countries. As the Sahara Desert advances southward, it now covers more than two-thirds of the country. Only the southwest and a narrow strip along the Nigerian border in the south are savannah grasslands. “This Muslim land is open for the gospel, and Muslims are more receptive than ever before, yet response has been small and church growth slow. Islam is strong and well-organized. The spiritual effects of folk Islam and demonic oppression are a major hindrance to people coming to Christ.” (Operation World)

Target Area: Niger
Broadcasters: Hachimou Yahaya
Partners: Evangelical Church of the Republic of Niger, Reformed Church in America
Transmission Site: 29 local and regional stations
Times: Five times per week

Niger is 98% Islamic and is ranked among the world’s poorest countries. As the Sahara Desert advances southward, it now covers more than two-thirds of the country. Only the southwest and a narrow strip along the Nigerian border in the south are savannah grasslands. “This Muslim land is open for the gospel, and Muslims are more receptive than ever before, yet response has been small and church growth slow. Islam is strong and well-organized. The spiritual effects of folk Islam and demonic oppression are a major hindrance to people coming to Christ.” (Operation World)

Target Area: Niger
Broadcasters: Hachimou Yahaya
Partners: Evangelical Church of the Republic of Niger, Reformed Church in America
Transmission Site: 29 local and regional stations
Times: Five times per week

Fulfulde is spoken by the Fula people of Niger. Many of the Fula are nomadic herdsmen of cattle, goats, and sheep. Others farm or work in a variety of art forms. The Fula continue to enforce a strict caste system, which divides people between nobles, tradesmen, and the descendents of slaves. During the years of the trans-Atlantic slave trade, noblemen captured people to ship to other countries as slaves. The descendents of those captured continue to be considered part of the slave caste. Fula are forbidden from marrying outside of their caste.

Target Area: Niger
Partners: Evangelical Church of the Republic of Niger, Reformed Church in America

The Gourmantche of Niger still follow their traditional belief systems, though some have converted to Islam. Most families farm rice and raise cattle. The landscape in which they live, however, makes it hard to sustain life. Dry and arid desert means that often the Gourmantche must travel long distances to get water. Often each family can only grow enough rice to sustain themselves, with little left over to sell at profit. Literacy rates continue to be low among the Gourmantche, although increasing efforts are underway to improve school availability and attendance.

Target Area: Niger
Partners: Evangelical Church of the Republic of Niger, Reformed Church in America

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