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The Second Day at the AbR Media CC

Day 2 of the AbR Media Continental Concention commenced by being led in praise and worship by Michio Ozaki and team.

We had talked about the Buffer Zone yesterday and Dr. Aila Tasse from the Lifeway Missions and Director for City Team in Eastern Africa led us all in specific prayer regarding the Buffer Zone prior to our first Plenary Session of the day.

Shodankeh Johnson of New Harvest Ministries continued his ministry this morning by bursting out in song in the praise of our God singing 'you are bigger than what people are greater than what people know.'
The challenge of Matthew 28 v19, he said, presents us with a global problem in that many are unreached.
Shodankeh reminded us of yesterday's talk that covered 'telling His story in His way' which first has to be engaged through 'prayer' and that we need to 'serve with purpose.' He then went on to his third principle of discovering the 'Person of Peace' (Matthew 10 v11-14 ; Luke 10 v3-11)

Shodankeh followed this up by presenting his fourth principle of introducing 'Discovery Bible Studies.' This is where your listeners will discover who God is, who Jesus is and the Biblical Truth. Shodankeh concluded by encouraging us to pray, to serve with purpose, find the person of peace and help people discover the truths about God, and only when we do that will we be ready to reach the people in the Buffer Zone.

The morning session continued as we discovered through the Ministry Showcase, ways of carrying on or sustaining media ministries.
Firstly, Alex Walker talked about the 'Help Desk' where AbRMedia offers Christian run radio station personnel rapid advice and solutions to their technical problems.
Jonathan Hargreaves then shared about Health Communication Resources where the local community is engaged in the communication process and becomes part of the change process. This is community-centered media used in centres where there is conflict or has been conflict or indeed likely to be conflict. Media needs to be empowering communities to address their own needs.
Tenkir Teni then gave a resume of Africa Media Trainers activities. This involves the coordination of training courses in Africa, helping regions plan their training, supplying people who can run the training courses and setting up training of trainers courses, thus giving a recognised accreditation for the training.
Dana Dirksen of Songs for Saplings brought us the unique approach to children in leading the singing of one of her 115 teaching songs especially written for children, also available on CD and on her website.
Paula Alderblad of Habari Maalum continued the theme in showing how creative material can be produced for children in the form of edutainment in both audio and video and for use on television.

We continued in Plenary with Pastor Fred Tiakor, director of children's ministry in the Church of Pentecost, Ghana. Based on the passage in Matthew 18 v2-6, 10-14 where Jesus stated that he was not willing that any of these little ones should perish, Pastor Tiakor began to advocate on behalf of the children of Africa – a least reached people group. In the midst of the most impoverished continent where child labour, trafficking, early child marriage, FGM, child abuse, etc is rife, Tiakor maintained that we must first of all seek to make the child happy. Then he delivered ten important points that we as Christians need to be involved with in order to see a change in the children's way of life. Some key points were to promote the involvement of children in the main weekly church services; to make our churches child friendly; include children in the divine salvation plan; produce child based evangelistic programmes; promote children broadcasting; use the Jesus film among children; etc. etc.

No sooner had we time to absorb the advocacy of children by using media than our next very important topic of Station Fundraising led by Berni Dymet, CEO of Christianityworks was upon us.
Berni demonstrated that there is a competition for funds and that prayer was not the only thing we should be engaged in but we need to engage with our donors in specific ways. A relational approach is essential in the field of fundraising
Berni gave us a rapid theology of fundraising from the scriptures. He nevertheless stated that God does not need our money (Matt 6 v19-21,24), rather that he wants our hearts. Part of our spiritual duty as leaders is to teach our people to give from the heart to God's work.
Berni then gave a resume of what should be involved in fundraising which obviously has variations depending on the culture and the country. In the consideration of the use of websites, social media, direct mail and email communication, the importance throughout is that a conversation rather than a monologue is held and above all showing care through all remote and personal communication with the prospective supporter.

The afternoon was then taken up with Breakout groups covering technical issues; music and drama for radio; fundraising queries; production 'can I do it and how can I do it better;' creating appealing programmes; and finally considering why technology is draining the stations' budget.

The evening ended with a Awards Gala dinner.

By: Norman Brierley