The Democratic Republic of Congo is a country filled with beautiful people who have suffered greatly. The ravages of AIDS and Malaria, coupled with the effects of a long civil war and other conflicts has resulted in an unfathomable number of orphans, widows and individuals with great and urgent needs. These needs include a lack of food, shelter, medical care and education.

Women of the Congo Evangelical Free Church (CECU) had a vision to practically address these needs while also sharing the deep love and hope of Christ. This vision led to the beginning of The Elikya Training Center for older orphans and widows in 2007. Elikya means “hope” in the local language of Lingala and the Center was started to do just that, bring hope. The Elikya Center is a CECU ministry in partnership with ReachGlobal, the International Mission of the Evangelical Free Church of America, EFCA.  

The Elikya Centre offers a wonderful opportunity for older orphans who are part of GlobalFingerprints, the child sponsorship program of the EFCA, to learn a life-giving trade and transition well into adulthood. Vulnerable widows also have the opportunity to have their lives changed here. The Center offers anywhere from ten months to two years of vocational training, along with basic life skills classes, Biblical studies, and literacy training. The vocational training includes sewing, masonry, carpentry, agriculture, mechanics, haircare, and soap making. The students live in housing provided at the Center where they experience the love and grace of Christ lived out in the lives of their teachers and fellow students.

Students singing
Students singing
Jerry and Nancy Hibma with Students
Jerry and Nancy Hibma with students
Women participate in the production of soap

As an ECFA member, the Evangelical Free Church of America holds to high standards of accountability with respect to governance, financial management and stewardship/­fundraising practices.