What is your ministry?
I currently hold the position of development officer at International Fellowship of Evangelical Students in Belarus. Our mission is to reach the students in every university across the country to share the gospel with them. We also equip Christian students to serve and share the good news with their friends. This year IFES is celebrating its 30th anniversary in Belarus. In these years, the ministry has touched the lives of thousands of students. Many of the former IFES students, volunteers, and staff members have become full time ministers at their local churches or even started church plants (my pastor included). We also target international students, many of them coming from predominately Muslim or Hindu countries. Studying in Belarus is one of the few opportunities for them to learn about the saving grace of Jesus Christ.
What do you hope to gain from participating?
I hope to gain wisdom from fellow colleagues, become more confident in my ministry, and expand my professional network.
What is your leadership role?
My primary responsibilities are keeping in touch with IFES partners and donors and raising funds for staff and our current projects. I am also in charge of the budget and solving any financial issues our ministry is experiencing. My job is to encourage and help staff members to raise financial support for themselves as well. I am also responsible for expanding the network of our partners in and out of country. Basically, I am a go-to person for all things finance and networking.
Why should someone invest in your ministry?
My biggest priority in my ministry is developing the network of partners and donors in the country. Unfortunately, most ministries and churches in Eastern Europe rely on financial support from first-world countries. We are grateful for the generous gifts of our brothers and sisters from better economic backgrounds; however, this situation is highly unsustainable. I strongly believe it is more beneficial for both Christian organizations and the church to have the ministry funded locally. I am trying to start a culture shift in this area.