We are Richard and Elizabeth Malitino

Written by Jill Harris

We are Richard and Elizabeth Malitino. We are the base leaders of Iris Gweru in Zimbabwe and we would like to tell you a little of our history and how we have come to this point in ministry.

We both have a great passion for underprivileged children and ran a school and small home for destitute children until a lack of funding caused by political unrest forced in the country us to close them both down (We rehomed some of the children and the rest became part of our family)

In 2010 we met Pastor Surprise Sithole, who heads up Partners in Harvest churches, and with his help, we managed to attend an Iris Harvest School of Missions. In the next few years we planted eight Partner in Harvest churches in Zimbabwe, and when Cyclone Idai caused so much havoc and loss of life in 2019, we worked in the Chimanimani area in eastern Zimbabwe, praying and counseling people, and planted a church there

In 2019 we joined Iris Global and set about instituting the various upliftment programs available through them so that we could better serve our children and make sure they are well cared for. We started by taking photos of all the children we foster and getting them uploaded on the Stop for the One website in an effort to get sponsors to help us make sure we can feed, house, dress, and educate them and get them medical assistance should they need it.

With nine churches, most with many children attending them, we also needed to set up a feeding scheme in this drought-ravaged country so, with little food available in Zimbabwe, we sourced a nutrient-rich, fortified porridge that requires no cooking from a company in South Africa. By the grace of God and the help of our sponsors we have managed to get the first shipment of food to our churches and the second shipment will arrive by truck from South Africa shortly.

The church we planted in the Chimanimani area in Eastern Zimbabwe is growing quickly and we hope to build a new church building and school for the congregation we have established there.

Unfortunately, all our plans for 2020 have had to be put on hold as we were all put in lockdown in the middle of March, and were only allowed out of our homes with written permission from the police. To date we have only been given permission to visit a few of our churches and feed the children at our local church once a week. We have also managed to buy supplies to feed these children at other times with the help of a local truck driver who regularly drives to South Africa so can purchase any supplies we need
As we look forward to the rest of 2021 when hopefully lockdown will soon end, the word uppermost in our minds is HOPE. Hope that God's Will will be done in and through us as we continue being His hands and feet as He sends us to bring His Light to the lost, suffering, dying, and unloved and to plant seeds of hope wherever we go.

We also cry out to God to send rain to end the devastating drought in parts of our beloved country so that we all have enough food to eat and water to drink. We pray for wisdom for our leaders and that our country will once more prosper and become 'the breadbasket of Africa', able to supply food to other countries in need.

We look forward to spending time with our many friends, both old and new, this coming year praying, worshipping, developing strategies on how to accomplish the visions God has given us, and, of course, bringing in the harvest.

The Stop for the One link to sponsor a child is here

The Stop for the One link to help us feed hundreds of children is here : https://stopfortheone.reachapp.co/sponsorships?sponsorship_type=community-kigali-kids-club%2Ccommunity-feeding-program%2Ccommunity-hope-families%2Ccommunity-kids-club%2Ccommunity-village-of-joy%2Ccommunity-village-of-peace&status=unsponsored%2Cpartial&location=zimbabwe-gweru

We pray that God's Light will shine around and through you wherever you go and whatever you do.

Sending our love and blessings to you,

Richard and Elizabeth Malitino