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Mambud Samai is a pastor who lives in Sierra Leone, where an estimated 27,000 citizens became amputees during the civil war that raged between 1991 and 2002.

To support amputees he visited in the rehabilitation camps after the war, Mambud turned to soccer, his country’s favourite sport. He founded a soccer league for amputees called the Single Leg Amputee Sports Club of Sierra Leone to help restore hope. Now 350 members strong, the league isn’t just about helping amputees overcome discrimination, restoring their pride, and providing therapeutic support.

As if these alone aren’t amazing, two years ago Mambud decided he wanted to make an even bigger difference. So, he travelled to the Asian Rural Institute (ARI for short), a unique school in Japan which is supported by the Mission & Service Fund. ARI trains thousands of leaders like Mambud from all over the world to grow food, tend livestock, and be effective change agents in their community.

After graduating from the nine-month program Mambud returned to the soccer fields of Sierra Leone with a new goal: to develop teaching farms where people can learn to grow food sustainably and support themselves financially by selling that food at market.

Mambud and members of the Single Leg Amputee Sports Club of Sierra Leone now run an educational farm, and there are plans to convert more of Sierra Leone’s fertile land into gardens and teaching centres. In a country where the average life-expectancy is just 43 years, Mambud’s extraordinary leadership and the skills he learned in Japan are saving lives.

From Canada to Japan to Sierra Leone ― Mambud’s story is just one example of how gifts to the Mission & Service Fund do a world of good.

Our congregation gives a designated amount of our annual offerings to the Mission and Service Fund of the United Church each year which helps to support leaders like Mambud to transform their part of the world.

Click on this link to hear Mambud’s story: