“Please Help My Baby Get Well!”

By Jessica Schaeffer

Serving at Koutiala Hospital for Women and Children, Mali, West Africa

Jessica returned this summer to Mali-one of the poorest nations on earth-after a year away on home assignment; the following is an adapted excerpt from her recent prayer letter.   

Anne didn’t listen to her husband. He had told her not to take their sick baby, Miriam, to the hospital.  They didn’t have any money. Anne delivered Miriam at our hospital nine months ago, and she remembered being told to bring Miriam back if she had a fever and wouldn’t nurse. Having already lost nine children, Anne refused to allow another of her babies to die.

Although Miriam was diagnosed with malaria and was very anemic, she received the care and treatment she needed in our pediatric ward. And we were able to cover the family’s hospital bill through our hospital benevolent fund.

Harrowing Realities

In the past few weeks as I’ve spent time catching up with friends, I’ve been reminded how harsh life is here, and how many infants, children, and adults die needlessly.

Recently, I was with a friend whose parents have lost seven children; only three of their children are still living. Untimely deaths happen around us everyday. At the hospital recently, we lost a 20-year old pregnant mom and her baby-the mom arrived critically ill (it seems the family gave her some very strong, traditional local medicine). We also lost a baby who had second and third degree burns after a pot of boiling porridge fell on him at home.


We see many sad cases and people who experience too much loss. Yet we are also thankful for those-like Anne and her daughter Miriam-whom we’re able to help. Our hospital has many opportunities to make a difference as we provide compassionate care and share about Jesus with our patients.

Anne was able to take Mariam back to their village after her recovery. She is one who has chosen to follow Jesus, even though her husband is not yet a believer. 

Although the challenges and setbacks we face in Mali often seem to make progress nearly impossible, I am encouraged to see the many ways God has been working in and around Koutiala. Thanks for your prayers and support of the work here!

What You Can Do

When you give to the Great Commission Fund, you partner with Alliance field workers, like Jessica, in sharing the tangible love of Christ with hurting people.

Learn More

Read “5,000 Babies!”, Jessica’s inspiring article about Koutiala’s remarkable ministry of hope among the sick and dying.


Get Involved...


We cannot “Live the Call Together” unless prayer is central to all we do.
Pray with us »


Is God calling you to service? We’re here to help you connect your passion with God’s purpose.
Serve with The Alliance »


Help build Christ’s Church by supporting the ministry and workers of The Alliance.
Give today »