The Horn of Africa
is a term given to the easternmost region of Africa which includes the countries of Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, and Sudan. This area is one of the “roughest neighborhoods” on the planet having at least one conflict – and frequently more – raging in the region continuously since 1960.
As a result, the region has some of the highest levels of hunger in the world and is consistently plagued by humanitarian disaster. Poor governance, violent regime changes, and an unstable political and security climate have profoundly impeded economic development. The people of the Horn are among the poorest in the world. Most depend on subsistence farming and herding of goats, camels, and cattle that must graze on increasingly scarce arable land.
The Horn of Africa is nearly half the size of the U.S. with a combined population of 193 million. Half the population is under 15 years of age. Each country has large populations of displaced people, many permanently displaced from their homelands. Sudan has nearly six million internally displaced people and almost 700,000 refugees scattered all over the world. These numbers will continue to rise as the conflicts in Darfur, Somalia, and Eritrea rage on.
In spite of the turbulence, the Horn of Africa is a region where Muslims and Christians coexist. So, although it is a difficult place, there are many opportunities to bring the light of Christ to this troubled region of the world.
Vision & Strategy
Despite this very difficult context, strong churches exist in Sudan, Kenya, and Ethiopia. Our strategy is to strengthen the Christian communities for greater impact, care for the needs of the poor in the name of Christ, and reach out to the unreached areas of these countries and the remainder of the region that remain strongly Islamic.
Our vision is to see the region’s Christian heritage revived and indigenous Christians mobilized for ministry.
Our efforts in the Horn of Africa are led by Area Director Mark Bardwell, a U.S.-based staff member who grew up in Africa and is a former missionary to Zaire. Mark’s role as Area Director is to identify opportunities for Partners to serve the indigenous Church and to provide pastoral care and strategic planning consulting to our partners.
How You Can Be A Partner
We invite you to partner with us in building the Church in the Horn of Africa. Develop relationships with Partners International staff doing ministry in the region and with the leaders of our indigenous partners there. Pray for the region. Join our initiative that focuses on the needs of women. Use your professional skills. Join a short-term ministry team from your church. Financially sponsor a ministry outreach. Working together, we’ll see God build His Church in the least Christian regions of the world.