Country Profile > Senegal
The main thrusts of the PAOC work in Senegal include church planting, leadership training, women's ministries, children's ministries, and Christian education.
Evangelism and church planting, as well as church building construction is taking place in many areas of the country in cooperation with the national church, the Assemblies of God of Senegal. The PAOC assists in evangelistic campaigns and outreach, and in training national leadership in these areas. With less than 1% of the population evangelical Christians, there is much evangelism needed.
The Institut Biblique Senegalais, the Bible College for pastoral training in Senegal, is supported through PAOC finances and personnel. There is a desperate need for trained pastors and lay leaders in the country, with the Assemblies of God of Senegal having less than 50 pastors in ministry. As well, one PAOC missionary is responsible for students in Liberia and Senegal who are enrolled in the Global University program for ministerial training.
Leadership development of the ladies of the Senegalese church is showing much promise, with retreats and outreach developing. Micro-enterprise programs with both believers and unbelievers is underway, with regular Bible storying as part of this program.
Children's ministries have grown considerably over the past few years with over 10,000 children involved in Bible clubs in villages throughout Senegal. These clubs meet weekly in schools, courtyards and open areas in villages. Training seminars for Sunday school teachers and Bible club supervisors are scheduled on a regular basis.
Ministry to street children is growing in the capital city of Dakar, presenting a great need for new facilities and personnel. These children live in unfinished buildings or literally on the streets of our city, sometimes abused, hungry, sick and with chemical addictions. But there is much evidence of changed lives in this ministry.
The PAOC is giving leadership to the new Christian School Initiative which began in 2005. 5 schools - in Dakar and 2 other cities - are ministering to almost 500 children. Construction on existing buildings and new construction is constantly underway. Teacher training and recruitment is also a prime focus of this ministry.
Dakar Academy, a school for missionary children, is supported by the PAOC through finances and personnel. With 250 students in grades K-12, this school currently educates 9 PAOC missionary kids and the PAOC currently has one full-time staff member at DA.
More and more teams from Canada are coming to encourage and participate in ministry with the PAOC field team. This provides opportunity for new projects as well as a greater understanding in Canadian churches of the ministry needs in Senegal.
Among the many economically and politically unstable countries of West Africa, Senegal stands out as a stable and open country to missionaries. Despite the fact that 95% of the population hold to the dominant religion, the Church is generally accepted and respected by the Senegalese who recognize that missionaries are here to do God's work. Our prayer is that this stability and openness continues so that missions work can continue and the Church can grow and mature.