Central Asia Young Life Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan, located in Central Asia and bordering Russia and China, is the world's largest landlocked country with a population of 17 million people. The same government leaders have been in strict control for more than 20 years, monitoring the country's Communist politics. Even with some economic benefits due to the country's natural resources of oil and gas, there are still many needy Kazak people in the rural areas, who are poverty-stricken due to high taxes and low wages among the lower classes. Poor families sometimes cast off their younger children to state-run orphanages rather than try to provide for them. The rate of suicide and human trafficking among these "social orphans" is high.
With a predominately Muslim population, there has been an increase in Christian persecution, but Young Life's leaders are determined to grow the ministry to kids, especially the poor, orphans and those with special needs. They offer mentoring, Christian fellowship, scholarships and spiritual care where it's most needed. The Young Life Training Center provides a place for leaders from all over Central Asia to meet, encourage and support one another.