Béatrice Félicité Bobo – Central African Republic

She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.

She says: “”My motto is: If My people will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear them and will forgive their sin and heal their land”.

Béatrice Félicité Bobo - Central African Republic rogné.jpg

Béatrice Félicité Bobo – Central African Republic

She works for the Mission d’Evangélisation pour la Repetance MER, and for Ouvre Socio – Humanitaire en Faveur des Enfants de la Rue OSHFER (both have no reference in the internet).

Street children benefit from Béatrice Bobo’s care, stop taking drugs and are freed from sex slavery, before returning to their homes. Since 1997, this 39-year-old single mother has been raising three children, a niece and sheltering street children in her house, where she founded an evangelical mission. She does all her work at an individual level through counseling and intercession, door-to-door visits, audiovisual media and public speaking. She also reaches out and evangelizes to the political authorities in the Central Africa Republic.

Beatrice Felicite Bobo was a successful Central African businesswoman and journalist. She had an impressive professional career before becoming a courageous missionary, although in the 1980s, she declined a German scholarship in order to take care of her brothers, because her only surviving parent, her father, had died. Hence, she did not acquire a university education. She trained on-the-job as a journalist with a national newspaper in 1987. She went through the ranks, becoming the business director in charge of public relations, subscription and advertising, and one of the few businesswomen of the Central Africa Republic in the 1990s. In 1994 she became a formal business owner, with a building and employees, engaged in importing and exporting fabrics for her interior decorating business.

Unfortunately, in 1997 she lost this business due to the fraudulent dealings of a Lebanese businessman. The judiciary system is very ineffective, with the legal officers benefitting from the prevalent corruption in the country.

Since 1982 she was actively involved in the Reformed Church as a Sunday school teacher and director. She was also a theological leader and member of various committees and councils. She received short-term theological leadership training in Togo, Cameroon, France, and Italy.

One day, coming out from a shop, she met street children sitting around her car. She was about to chase them away, when she heard God saying to her: “Tell them about Jesus.” She talked to them, and later found out that in the capital, Bangui, there are an estimated 300,000 street children due to war and corruption. Some of them are no more than five years old and lead a hand-to-mouth existence. They are most of the time engaged in sniffing drugs and committing all sorts of crimes in order to survive.

Béatrice visited them in areas where no one dared to go. Some are living in infested apartments, including girls no more than children themselves, having babies from their delinquent pimps, and living as sex slaves. They are diseased, drugged and desperate. Some commit suicide, because they see it as the only way out. During times of war their bodies lay decomposing at the site where they died.

She is often on the verge of a break-down, when she continuously has to face such desperation, but her faith in God and the donations from few kindhearted people keep her going. She listens to these children, teaching them the ways of God. And she managed to reunite more than 400 street children with their families or found them surrogate parents.

She had to relocate to an old colonial house in the capital of the Central African Republic in 2002, after her own apartment burned down. Originally what is now her residence was solely intended as the base for her mission organization.

Béatrice has developed revenue-generating initiatives such as fruit juice production and pushcart transport to help the children meet their needs. She sensitized local churches to the children’s plight and some came to her aid. She has no transport since hers required major repairs that she could not afford. As a jobless person with four children and more in her care, she is at times in a very needy position, just as the poor people she ministers to. She is short of volunteers since she is not able to pay salaries. Often there are donations for the street children, but not enough to cover their constant basic needs for food, clothing and medicine, and none to pay her accumulated bills.

As a consequence Béatrice and her own children often go hungry and education for her own children is unattainable. In addition, she is concerned about the undesirable influence by the street children on her own, since they live together. However, Béatrice’s strength comes from her faith in God. She had always been a churchgoer, but one, who in her own words, was only concerned about her own children, business and travel. Now she believes: “Peace is priceless! Even if my children and I had nothing and God would save the street children, women and the nation in general, we would rejoice. It is our everyday cry and prayer”!?

Since her country is torn apart by war, corruption and ethnic conflict, another concern of hers is to unite women of every status, regularly holding conferences and rallies to pray and work for national reconciliation and peace. Every 30th of April, Béatrice and her team lead a day of prayer for the lost children of the Central African Republic and the world. She mostly works on an individual level through counseling and intercession, door-to-door visits, audiovisual media and public speaking.

And she extends her evangelization efforts to the political authorities. She even had audiences with the prime minister and other government officials who expressed solidarity with her and declared a period of prayer and fasting for the entire nation. In one of her magic moments she remembers, “we asked an authorization from the major general of the national army to access different military camps. While it took time to be processed, Jesus Christ made us enter those camps with all the risks that it entailed. Other women ran away, but one of the spiritual daughters and I, went in and the testimony was powerful: Military men repented and requested that we visit them each week”!?

Béatrice’s network is large: many join her efforts, but financial and material means and daily field workers are scarce. She lacks the means to develop the training programs she envisions for the street children. Nevertheless, her vision of a peaceful future centers on all people returning to God. (1000PeaceWomen).

Sorry, I can find no other information for Béatrice Félicité Bobo, Central African Republic, in the internet.

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