Ministry Uses Facebook to Campaign for Slum Children

An evangelical ministry has launched a campaign to support and build schools for slum children in India.

Through the Slumschool Project, Worldwide Christian Schools (WWCS) aims to raise at least $1 million to support three model schools in the country by December.

The fundraising and awareness campaign is being promoted through Facebook, the online social networking website, to weave a "network of one million supporters."

According to Gypsy Meadows with WWCS, the campaign has received a positive response and about 260 members have joined the facebook fan page. Through the Web the ministry has raised $1,000 apart from the additional $33,000 offline.

More than half of Mumbai's estimated 18 million residents live in either designated slums or in illegal shantytowns, according to The Associated Press.

The Oscar-winning blockbuster "Slumdog Millionaire," says Meadows, depicts the plights of slum children in India. They "live in deep poverty and lack stable housing."

"They don't have a place that they're legally able to live, so they may come back the next day and find that their house is gone," Mission Network News quoted her as saying. "The government may bulldoze their whole community, because the neighbors who have rented or own property have complained. So it's a life that has no security. And for children, obviously that creates a lot of problems."

The Slumschool Project aims to support three Christian schools that provide quality education to the slum children. It will provide schools with permanent buildings, computers, student uniforms, desks and textbooks.

Meadows says these schools are showing the "love of Jesus" and are transforming children to be "productive (and) successful citizens."

She laments that India has 26 million children who are orphans. Many of the school partners were orphans themselves "who were introduced to Christ in a Christian school" and now "live out their lives in gratitude" serving the children.

She says Christians should pray for the "children of India ... that there would be safety for them, and that God would put His angels around them."

The WWCS ministry was launched by three businessmen from Grand Rapids, Mich., after a trip to India where they witnessed the poor schooling conditions in rural areas.

The ministry provides "school development programs dedicated to the glory of God and to the service of the local community without regard for race or creed."