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A prayer pick in your neighbourhood

An invitation from our team in Pakistan to support the work they are doing to care for their neighbours and the environment.

Rachael Adams | 23 Jul 2021


Photo credit: Tearfund

Unmanaged waste threatens people’s health. Many people living in poverty are forced to either live next to piles of rubbish, attracting pests, or to burn it, which then leads to respiratory problems. Both are health risks for people who cannot afford to pay doctor’s fees. But what if there was another way?

Tearfund is partnering with communities across Pakistan to equip people to safely dispose of their waste in a way that protects both themselves and the environment. And it’s raising local champions who are carrying this message far and wide. People like 25-year-old Anzila, from Karachi, the largest city in Pakistan.

Sharing is caring

Anzila took part in Tearfund’s training over two months, where she learned about how she could safely dispose of rubbish, and help others to do the same.

‘I have decided to share this information with my neighbours and inform them why we are stuck, and why our health conditions are not being improved,’ Anzila shares.

Anzila has already delivered this message to 75 families in her local area.

‘I think this is the key problem of urban cities, and we need to take part in establishing recycling units to protect our house, street, city and, ultimately, the environment.’

And Anzila hasn’t stopped there. Alongside her studies, she has been advocating to local authorities for better waste-collection services in her area.


Thanks to people like Anzila,  communities are being equipped about how they can better protect themselves and the environment | Photo credit: Tearfund

An invitation

As well as leading training sessions, Tearfund has been working with local authorities to set up recycling hubs in some of the most vulnerable communities. These will not only create jobs – which in these challenging times is a lifeline to many – but will significantly improve the health of local people.

The Tearfund team in Pakistan are continuing to raise awareness of this issue in innovative ways. They recently gathered together at the beach in Karachi for a community litter pick. As they were cleaning up, they talked to others about the importance of protecting people and the environment. And they would like to invite you to do something similar…

Pray with us

Over the summer, why not arrange a community litter pick with your family, friends or church? In many places across the UK, you can borrow litter pickers and bins bags from your local council. Remember to bring gloves with you and if you are doing this through your church, you may need to carry out a risk assessment.

And then, find some time to pray! This can be together before or after the litter pick, or you can do this during this pick itself. Here are some things you could pray for:




Are you looking for other practical actions you can take to support people living in poverty? Why not send an email to your MP to let them know that you want to see urgent climate action that shows compassion for our global neighbours and builds a better world for everyone? We have a form you can easily use that will send a message directly to your MP. 

  Rachael Adams

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