Davar Expands to New Countries in 2023
Expanding in 2023
As of the end of 2022, Davar has produced 225 audio bibles in 48 countries. We celebrate the millions of people who now have access to hear God’s Word in their heart language. Yet, millions are still waiting. Davar is excited to announce that our 2023 production plan includes eight new countries! Learn more about the new places coming in 2023 below.
New in Africa: Algeria, Cameroon, Gabon, and Togo
Algeria is in the northern most part of Africa near Morocco and Tunisia. The coastline is Mediterranean, and the interior is part of the Saharan desert. Our first recording in Algeria will be a full Bible for the 115,000 mainly Islamic speakers of Tamahaq Tahaggart. It is spoken around the Ahaggar Mountains in southern Algeria along the border with Libya and Niger.
*Source: Joshua Project, Ethnologue
With the support of the local bible society, Davar has plans for 14 languages in the country of Cameroon. Located in the western part of Africa, Cameroon is home to 27.2 million people and has 260 national languages among the 240 different tribes. Almost two-thirds of the population identify as Christian, making an audio Bible a necessary tool to disciple believers. Another 20% are Muslim, giving the audio bible a secondary purpose of sharing the Gospel for the first time.
Gabon is located along the Atlantic coast of Central Africa near the Republic of the Congo, Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea. It has significant areas of protected parkland with rainforests and diverse wildlife including gorillas, hippos and whales along the coast. It is estimated that 80% of the population is Christian with some Islamic and traditional faiths also present. French is the official language of Gabon; however, one-third of the population speak Fang. Davar will record the Fang Old Testament, to pair with the existing New Testament along with five other languages in 2023.
*Google Maps, Episcopal Conference of Gabon
Togo is one of the smallest African nations. At just over 22,000 square miles, it is roughly double the size of Hawaii. With a good climate and growing seasons, Togo’s economy relies mainly on agriculture. The major religion is based on indigenous beliefs with Christians in the minority. One of these Christian groups is the 600,000 Gen Mina people who will have access to God’s audible Word with the recording of their own audio Bible in 2023.
*Source: Wikipedia and Joshua Project
New In Europe: Estonia
Estonia is located in Northern Europe and was once part of the Soviet Union. It has more than 1,500 islands in the Baltic Sea and Gulf of Finland. Estonian is the official language of the country and spoken by 1.2 million inside Estonia. Many also speak English, Finnish and Russian. According to a 2021 census, 58% of Estonians don’t feel an affiliation to any religion, with the largest group in the 15-29 year old category. Of those who do feel an attachment to a religion, Christianity was dominant. Providing Estonia with a contemporary audio bible allows those in the region to provide God’s Word to the younger generation and help them to grow in their knowledge and love for Christ.
*Source: Google Maps, Estonian World
New in The Americas: Guatemala, Mexico, and Suriname
Although Spanish is the official language of Guatemala, there are 22 different Mayan languages also spoken, including Akateko and Mam. Both of these Mayan languages are spoken in the Huehuetenango region where Davar plans to record in 2023. This region is in far Western Guatemala where 70% of the population is said to be in poverty and 22% in extreme poverty, unable to meet basic necessities. Almost half of the population identifies as evangelical Christians and over 2.4 million people are illiterate making an audio Bible an important part of discipleship.
*Source: Wikipedia, July 2022 Gallup poll
Mexico has 68 national languages beyond the widely-spoken Spanish. Many of these indigenous languages are specific to regions within the country like Soyaltepec Mazatec and Ixcatlan Mazatec spoken in Oaxaca. Along with these regional languages, Davar plans to record Maya and Chol. It is believed that the Mayan hieroglyphs still seen today are an early form of the Chol language. While many Chol are Roman Catholic, they have integrated pagan syncretism with worship of mountains, caves, stone idols, and the sun and the moon included.
*Source: Statista, Britannica
Formerly known as Dutch Guiana, Suriname is located in northern South America and bordered by Guyana and French Guiana. It gained its independence from The Netherlands in 1975. While Dutch is the official language, Javanese is the heart language of almost 80,000 who do not have access to the spoken Word. They were originally brought to Suriname as indentured laborers by Dutch plantation owners in Suriname in the late 1800s. The majority that are still in Suriname are Sunni Islam followers, a nod to their Indonesian heritage.
*Source: Britannica, Wikipedia
PRAY FOR OUR MISSION
These are our best plans as of the beginning of 2023, but are subject to change. Join us in praying for the hearts of these new people groups, that they may hear the Word of the Lord and live transformed for His glory. Pray for our new relationships, new recording studios and new communities inside these eight new places.