Significant events in Australia, Los Angeles, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Hong Kong, Pakistan and Tonga

At 89 years of age, Peter Tripovich is walking around Australia to raise money for children in poverty in Cambodia, Thailand, Sri Lanka and the Philippines. On January 26, Australia Day, he will be in Pemberton. Local residents and Adventist volunteers join the Walk With Peter in each town and the funds raised go to International Children’s Care (ICC), a charity affiliated with Adventist-laymen’s Services and Industries (ASI).

Volunteer health professionals are needed for what will likely be the largest Adventist free clinic in United States history on April 27-29. A total of 3,000 volunteers will be needed to serve about 10,000 people with a wide range of screening tests and medical procedures. Well-known figures from Hollywood are volunteering to be part of the project organized by Your Best Pathway to Health, a nonprofit affiliated with Adventist-laymen’s Services and Industries (ASI).

A class of 60 girls graduated from empowerment training in Nyamira County, Western Kenya, in late November. The goal of the three-month program is to end the brutal tradition of female genital mutilation (FGM) for a new generation of African young women, as well as teach basic life skills and values, including their rights and role in the community. The classes are organized by the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) Kenya branch under the leadership of Ms. Mary Kwamboka, project manager.

A total of 3,944 children of refugees from Burundi will begin school in Rwanda in January through an orientation program conducted by the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) Rwanda branch. The program is located at nine centers in the city of Kigali and three centers in the city of Huye, reports The New Times newspaper. The goal is to assist refugee children with the language transition and to get up to speed in mathematics, life skills and civic education, stated Samuel Ndayambaje, education director for ADRA Rwanda.

Adventists in South Sudan have been warned not to take part in war and tribal conflicts and called to unite in efforts for peace and development, according to Radio Tamazuj. The statement came from Deng Akoon, a Global Mission worker for the denomination in Northern Bahr el Ghazal state. He urged all Sudanese to give room for God’s peace in their hearts.

The new Hong Kong Adventist Hospital opened recently with the promise that 20 percent of its 300 beds would be reserved for low-income patients. The state-of-the-art facility cost $220 million (1.7 billion Hong Kong dollars) to construct and equip, according to The Standard, China’s business newspaper. It represents the most visible witness of the Adventist faith in this key city which also has an Adventist college, 19 congregations and about 5,200 church members.

Mary Javed is an Adventist who works as a teacher in a public elementary school in the Punjab province of Pakistan. She has been accused by one of the parents of preaching her religion and being unfair in discipline, reports the Pakistan Christian Post. The overwhelming majority of the citizens of Pakistan are Muslim and the complaining parent is quoted, “Mary Javed is unholy because she is Christian [and] therefore [the school should] not allow her as teacher of our Muslim girls.” Javed denied the accusation and said that the real reason for the complaint is because her husband is an attorney who has been involved in protecting the rights of Christians.

Adventist education has operated in Tonga for 120 years and this milestone was marked with opening of a new home economics classroom at Beulah College in December, reported the Matangi Tonga newspaper. He Huang, the ambassador to Tonga from China, was present for the opening because funding for its construction and equipment came from Chinese foreign aid in the Pacific island nation.