Alliance Justice and Compassion resources and promotes the local and global ministries of The Christian and Missionary Alliance in Canada that seek to bring wholeness and well-being to people made vulnerable by circumstances of poverty, disaster, and injustice. May the stories and thoughts inspire the reader to act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with God.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

3 Things to Consider on World Food Day

Today is World Food Day, a United Nations designated day to remember 821 million people in the world who do not have enough food to eat. For those of us who live in a context of plenty, let's  pause and consider three things:

1. Where does my food come from?

  • Who grew/raised the food I eat? (Grains, fruit, vegetables, meat, etc.) 
  • Was it mass produced? Was it sustainably grown to ensure a healthy environment? 
  • Who produced the prepared food I eat? (Bread, cookies, pasta, ketchup, etc.)
  • How and from where is the food transported to where I buy it? 
Reflecting on these things can serve to make us more grateful for the food we eat and for the farmers and food producers that make it available for us.

2. What are my consumption habits?

- Do I plan my meals before I shop?
- Do I purchase only the quanitities I need?
- Do I mostly eat prepared/packaged foods?
- Do I seek to purchase food grown/raised locally?
- Do I intentionally eat seasonal available foods?
- How much food packaging do I throw away?
- How much food do I throw away?
- Do I practice hospitality and eat meals with friends or neighbours?

Reflecting on these questions can motivate us to become more conscientious about our eating and purchasing habits. 

3. Who are the 821 million and why are they hungry?

  • People who live in chronic poverty and don't have the resources to purchase or grow food.
  • People who live in isolated communities and don't have access to food, or can't afford the exhorbitant prices if food is available.  
  • Smallholder farmers who historically have grown their own food who are now experiencing changing climates that has brought drought or soil degradation. 
  • People who are displaced by war, conflict, or natural disaster, including the increasing extreme weather systems. 
  • Gender inequality - men and boys prioritized for household food consumption.
  • Economic crises - people who live in countries with extreme inflation and food has become unaffordable.

Reflecting on these realities may prompt us to learn more about people who live with these realities both here in Canada and around the world and also inspire us take action to pray for them, to support organizations providing food, nutrition, or agriculture programming. We may even find ourselves wanting to advocate for causes of food justice and food sovereignty.  

#WorldFoodDay; #FaithAndHopeInAction; #EndWorldHunger

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

The Ministries of Alliance Justice and Compassion - Podcast

In an interview with Greg McCombs of First Alliance Church, Calgary, Joanne Beach, Director of Alliance Justice and Compassion discusses the ministry of Alliance Justice and Compassion. (Recorded November, 17, 2018) 

Thursday, April 4, 2019

Refugee Families Embraced by Compassionate Communities

Since becoming a National Sponsorship Agreement Holder (SAH) in 2012, as of December 2018, the C&MA in Canada, on behalf of 104 local churches, had submitted applications to resettle 776 individuals. This includes churches in our partner denominations who the C&MA is also serving.* 

Since becoming a local SAH in 2010, First Alliance Church in Calgary have assisted 31 Alberta churches (16 Alliance) with applications to settle 526 individuals. Combined, 1,302 individuals have found refuge in Canada through the ministry of 135 local churches in this eight-year chapter of our story.

We celebrate the fact that some churches have formed groups of churches/agencies to work together, like Cobourg/Port Hope Better Together in order to sponsor multiple families.  

*Denominational partners are the Evangelical Missionary Church, Fellowship Baptist, and Associated Gospel Church. 

Thursday, October 11, 2018

International Day of the Girl!

October 11 has been designated International Day of the Girl by the United Nations. The day aims to highlight and address the needs and challenges girls face, while promoting girls' empowerment and the fulfillment of their human rights. This year's theme is: With Her: A Skilled GirlForce. 
Of the 1 billion young people – including 600 million adolescent girls – that will enter the workforce in the next decade, more than 90% of those living in developing countries will work in the informal sector, where low or no pay, abuse and exploitation are common. (Source: 
Niger, West Africa, has a reputation of having one of the highest rates of child brides. The country's legal age limit for marriage is 15. Child marriages have negative impact on a girl's health, education, and future! Our team in Niger is attempting to address this issue through the Niger Vocational Center for girls ages 12 - 19. Father's must sign a contract indicating they will not marry off their daughter until she has completed this three-year program. At the end of the final year, each girl writes a National exam and is coached in starting her own business.
Education is the route to transformation.  An educated girl is more likely to earn greater income, raise a smaller family, have healthier children, participate in political processes, and send her own children to school. 
Investing in girls makes moral and economic sense. Giving them solid skills to earn a living helps them, their families, and their children for the next generation. When women and girls earn income, they reinvest 90 percent of it into their families, as compared to only 30 to 40 percent for a man. And when you invest in a girl in a wholistic sense, also focusing on health and hygiene, nutrition, sexual health, expressing themselves through their own ideas and thoughts, discussing faith, prayer, and a sense of purpose, you help build a young woman who can stand the storm around her and make smart, educated decisions for her own life. 
This video gives a glimpse into the impact of this ministry...

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Partnering to End Hunger in Niger

As a member of the Canadian Foodgrains Bank, the Christian and Missionary Alliance supports food assistance programs and agricultural & livelihood programs with matching funds from the Canadian Government's Humanitarian Assistance funds. As Niger is one of the most underdeveloped countries according to the United Nations, we use most of our CFGB funds in programming there through our implementing partner, Samaritan's Purse - Niger.  


Mahamadou, pictured here shared, "Each month I get a full food ration of maize, beans and oil for my family. In fact, the ration you see here with me can keep me and my family for a month without selling my goats or wood.  It is a great support in my life." 

This food assistance program in the Diffa region of Niger fed 4,801 individuals in 900 households throughout 9 villages.  This program provided unconditional food distribution to the most vulnerable in host communities over 4 food-insecure months prior to their annual harvest. Nutrition and infant feeding instruction, screening children for malnutrition, and mosquito net training were activities done during the food distributions. This program was funded with a 4:1 match from Global Affairs Canada.

Registration  day

Preparing for a distribution
Nutrition and infant feeding instruction
Malnutrition Screening
Mosquito net instruction
Djahara is a widow who has had to provide food for her grandchildren, She shared,Some call me a beggar.  It was not easy to live in such a situation. We lived in the same situation until the day when Samaritan's Purse came to register us as the poorest of the village and brought us food for free. My suffering has been greatly reduced.  I do not have the words to describe how much this means to me. 
The chief of the village of Mandawa testified,
 “With this intervention in my village, even the health of our children has improved!

(Assisting Local Farmers to Adopt Resilient Improvements)

As well as 'giving fish' we are also committed to 'teaching people to fish' as the old adage says. We have invested in many programs over the last 10 years that focus on agricultural livelihood training.

The most recent program was a three-year program that ended in the fall of 2016. The ALFARI program worked with 900 farmers (600 women and 300 men).  The program focused on a variety of areas:

  • Conservation Agriculture training along with:
    • Sustainable agricultural technique training
    • Improved seed distribution
    • Improved seed production 
    • Improved seed boutique creation
    • Field school demonstration farms established 
    • Farmer exchange sisits
    • Tree nurseries
Training in new farming techniques
Digging zai holes to prepare for planting
Improved seed provides a greater harvest
Observing the new crop
Tree nursery planting
  • Vegetable gardening training, including:
    • Tree planting
    • Women's exchange visits
    • Cash crop generation
Vegetable gardens provide added nutrition for families
and money for household needs when sold
An exchange visit to another village provides motivation
for these women to start their own gardens.
  • Household Nutrition instruction including:
    • Soap making
    • Mud stove introduction 
    • Infant feeding practices
Demonstration of more fuel efficient stoves
that will use less wood and burn more safely. 
Learning to make soap
Mariama testifies to the value of learning to exclusively breast feed her infant. 
I took too much time before getting into the practice of exclusive breastfeeding, as I heard a lot of discouraging things about this practice. But due to the awareness and training sessions conducted by the nutrition supervisor, I finally understood all what I heard was wrong. My daughter you see here is my eighth, and this is the first time I applied exclusive breastfeeding. I have noticed the difference between the behaviors of my daughter with my other children. For instance, my daughter has never gotten sick, while with the others I was frequently in Niamey, which was 25 km from our village. I am very proud with my beautiful and healthy baby. Now I am convinced that breast milk is a blessing. To conclude, the ALFARI project has impacted my life and the life of my family.
  • Cash for Work
    • Land reclamation initiatives
      • Tree planting
      • Zai hole and demi-lune contruction
      • Gabion box construction to stop soil erosion
Gabion boxes to combat soil erosion


We will be starting another multi-year 
agriculture and livelihood project in Niger in 2017.  
To donate to this work, click here: FOOD AID