It is Timotheos Foundation's mission to address the spiritual and material needs of vulnerable children and their families in the southern part of Malawi. The foundation was founded in June 2011, in response to a request for help from the Reformed Presbyterian Church of Malawi. The foundation addresses poverty, supports local communities in need, and brings God's Word to local Malawians. Since starting, the foundation has established a variety of programs to address the most pressing needs of Malawians in the rural southern part of the country, and these programs continue to expand as the needs are great.
Currently, Timotheos Foundation Malawi runs six child care centers (CCCs), five foster homes, and over 500 children in secondary school or in further training at universities or in trades. The child care centers have been set up in an effort to provide children with basic resources. Children accepted into the program receive biblical instruction, food, clothing, education and medical care. By providing these resources to orphans, they have the opportunity to become influential Christians within their society. Preschool-aged children come for one meal a day, as well as to receive Bible lessons and basic education. Grades 1-6 attend class at their center in the morning and receive their nutritious meal afterward. Grades 7 and 8 attend class at the local government school and then come to the center for their meal and extra lessons as well as their daily Bible class. Local people are employed to do the cooking and maintenance around the CCCs in an effort to facilitate community involvement. A Reformed Presbyterian pastor lives with his family in a house at the center and is involved with daily assemblies and teaching of Bible lessons.
The Timotheos Foundation in Malawi is supported by a Dutch, a Canadian, and an American foundation. They all raise funds that contribute to the operations and child care center programs in Malawi.
Gerrit Oomen is the general manager of the Timotheos Foundation in Malawi. When Timotheos Malawi started in 2011, Gerrit and his wife, Gretchen, became actively involved in raising funds in Canada for the foundation. As the work expanded, there was a need for a Canadian expatriate to help run the projects. God put it on the Oomens' hearts to answer this need in July 2019. With their 8 children, they moved to Malawi to run the Timotheos programs and report to the Dutch and Canadian foundations.
Hungry For Life comes alongside Timotheos to support them with agricultural development. The child care centers are located in the southern part of Malawi, the region that faces the most rain during the rainy season and the most severe drought during the dry season. Together with our Canadian partner, Southern Irrigation, we will help the local farmers at the Chigumukire center in Nsanje, to develop their farming techniques and equipment so that they can grow crops all year round in these difficult circumstances.