What happens to families once they are freed?
We keep in contact with each one of the families .
At the time of this writing there were 24 families freed, between may 2020 and January 2021. Approximately half the Fathers are now working either in factories or public works or are drivers. They are hard workers and valuable to their employers. The other half are working on farms.
Some of the fathers are old and their bodies deserving rest, the brick yards having worn them out, but their still able bodied sons are able to work and keep the family sustained.
The same goes for the sons of widows. Although the factory workers are at close to the minimum wage of 800 Pakistani rupees a day, or five- six dollars, the vegetable farm workers make less than that. But they are very happy. It is more than the plate of food they were earning in the brick yards, while the rest of their families were slaving with them. And The farmers send the men home with potatoes and other vegetables. All these families are able to sustain approximately $30 a month rent for their small courtyards and homes, where they are now rejoicing and free. The daughters’ dreams of being dress designers, and dress makers, and educators are no longer far away dreams.
We would like to assist families that are interested in running their own businesses. We believe that the honesty, integrity and hard working ethics of these Christian minorities, will cause them to excel at their own enterprises. Because they are still considered not equal with the majority religion in Pakistan, even the free minorities are taken advantage of.
We will be replicating what is happening with one family. We supplied one of the fathers with a used rickshaw (Photo above). He has upgraded to a newer rickshaw and he is now able to make payments. Sohail is making a very good living selling his ‘Freedom Fruit’ during growing season, and giving taxi rides during the winter.
Another father, has been able to purchase a donkey and a cart, and he’s hauling bricks to and fro, from a brick yard, where he is being allowed to live rent free, instead of being a slave to it.
Won’t the brick masters bring other families into debt bondage to replace the ones we freed?
This very well could happen, for there are now empty rooms, and the amount of bricks being manufactured are fewer. But whenever we free a family, we spend a minimum of 45 minutes speaking with the brick master.
We approach this cautiously, not wanting to anger them, but speaking to their conscience. When we sense a seared conscience we rely on the good Master above to give us the words to speak to the brick master below. There will be a blog that describes a few of the conversations we had with ten of them.
In May of 2020, before our freedom partners began to pitch in, and I had vowed to free a family from the Roshan brick yard in Kasur every fifteen days, I found myself becoming bitter toward brick master Mohammed Ramzian. But Pastor Shokat stressed that God loves Ramzian also, and that they were praying for his heart. They were also given an open door to talk to him about the Jesus of his laborers.
My first trip to Pakistan to buy the freedom of the remaining 13 families from his brick yard was near, and Shokat informed me that Ramzian was contemplating leaving the business. Ramzian’s heart was changing, to the point that when I found myself sitting next to him in his office, I sensed this once cruel brick master with a meek and humbled spirit. Several of his piers in the industry were chastising him for the move he was making in allowing us to empty his brick yard of human beings.
We are not only freeing families to just free families, but every family that is freed by freedom loving people in the USA gives hope to brick yard families for miles around.
We have been inspiring many Pakistani people, and families, in taking the lead in bringing joy, prayers, medicine, education and even sacrificing with their own savings, much less than an average American’s, to buy the freedom of family’s themselves.
A brick yard worker told us of something that’s an incredible historical first; The families of his brick yard boarded a bus for a crusade we were having. The brick master gathered all the families together and told them; “Your debts are written in this book”. He then tossed it in a fire and told them; “You are now all free.” For we believe that a cry of freedom, a freedom cry of conviction is rising and hovering over the brickyards, brick masters, the police, and Parliament of Pakistan.