Adventist Mission will extend nearly U.S.$415,000 in grants to open two health-oriented community centers in Russia, fund 111 Global Mission pioneers, and provide much-needed assistance to an orphanage in Madagascar built by a previous Thirteenth Sabbath Offering.
The Seventh-day Adventist world church’s Mission Board Strategy and Funding Committee voted on May 16 to release $414,777 in funding for dozens of projects that have the ultimate goal of planting new churches, said Jeff Scoggins, planning director for Adventist Mission.
Two of the bigger projects are “urban centers of influence” in the Russian cities of Novosibirsk and Ulan-Ude.
A total of $87,000 will go toward the Sequoia Center, a preschool and massage therapy center slated to open in November 2018 in Novosibirsk, a Siberian city of 1.9 million people located 2,100 miles (3,365 kilometers) east of Moscow.
Another $64,520 will help open a health food store with healthy lifestyle training courses in Ulan-Ude, a city of 432,000 people in East Siberia.
"It’s wonderful to see the Euro-Asia Division catching the vision for establishing urban centers of influence,” said Gary Krause, director of Adventist Mission. The territory of the Adventist Church’s Euro-Asia Division includes Russia. “I know that these two centers, in major Siberian cities, will build wholistic connections to the community, and reach many people who are searching for something more fulfilling in their lives."
In other funding, about $208,500 was approved to sponsor 104 projects overseen by 111 Global Mission pioneers in three church divisions. Most of the funding will go to assist 100 Global Mission pioneers working on 94 projects in the Southern Asia-Pacific Division. The rest is for nine pioneers working on nine projects in the Trans-European Division, and two pioneers involved with one project in the Northern Asia-Pacific Division.
In addition, Adventist Mission decided to provide $12,000 to a children’s orphanage in the African island nation of Madagascar constructed with the help of a Thirteenth Sabbath Offering in 2012. Earley Simon, a video producer at Adventist Mission, requested the grant after visiting the orphanage inside an Adventist conference compound while filming in the Southern Africa-India Ocean Division for a Thirteenth Sabbath Offering promotion.
The orphanage’s two staff members, who care for 10 girls, including one baby, face challenges to finance the operations, according to a document submitted to the Mission Board Strategy and Funding Committee.
“Currently, the orphanage is managed under the conference’s women’s ministry department, and the government is threatening to shut it down for lack of sufficient care takers,” it said. “The director has estimated $12,000 [is needed] to cover all of their needs for one year. This would include the ability to receive new orphans and develop self-sustaining projects they are working on.”
Adventist Mission expects to distribute more than $4 million to various projects in 2018.