Struggling to Sustain a Small Church
Like many pastors in Indonesia, Acong needed a second job. In a country where 7 out of the 10 poorest regions are predominantly Christian, his small church community was unable to provide him with the income he and his wife Frida needed to survive.
To support his ministry, Acong opened a small hardware store, selling various tools and supplies to his neighbors in Samarinda, a rapidly developing port city of 830,000 people.
Despite his best efforts, it was difficult for Acong to make a profit. At best, his neighbors avoided him; at worst, he experienced prejudice for his faith. Acong didn’t want to forsake his ministry, but if his business didn’t start to gain traction, he would be left without a choice.
A New Opportunity to Serve Neighbors
When a local Partners Worldwide partner, Yayasan Wahana Generasi Bintang (YWGB) offered a business training program to pastors in his area, Acong leaped at the opportunity.
Through the PW Microenterprise curriculum, which he attended with Frida, Acong learned that the key to effective business is serving the customer.
Unlike most store owners, who want their customers to spend as much as possible, Acong chose a different approach. He sits down with his customers and asks them about their building projects. From there, he helps them calculate exactly what products they need, ensuring that they don’t purchase more items than necessary.
Acong’s new approach is a win-win for him and the customer. By encouraging customers to purchase less, he reduces the risk that they spend more than they have. Secondly, his customers appreciate that they are not being taken advantage of and choose to return to him the next time they need supplies.
Helping Others Follow in Their Footsteps
Pastor Acong’s wife, Frida, also shares a heart for service. Upon completing the PW training, Frida decided to start her own ministry. Their hardware store is in a market strip not far from a redlight district where commercial sex workers operate. With compassion in her heart, Frida uses the skills she’s learned to help these women find well-paying alternative livelihoods.
You Empower Their Ministry
Equipped with business training, Acong and Frida can share God’s love outside the walls of their church, whether by example or through direct ministry. You, as a vital part of the Partners Worldwide network, have made this possible. Your support enables us to walk alongside such inspiring people as Acong and Frida. As we continue to grow, we can’t wait to see what comes next.