Langards are moving to Gabon Campaign
Hi friends and family,
As most of you already know, my name is Erouane, my wife is Lucy and our little, bubbly 2-year-old daughter is Kharis. We are the Langard-Okenkali tribe and as we write this letter, we’re both transitioning out of our youth and children pastor roles at our local church in Cape Town Sea Point. We also lead an edutech entrepreneurship and leadership school called Entrepreleaders School as well as its foundation Entrepreleaders Foundation. Both our foundation and school aim at equipping youth between the ages of 15 and 25 years old to start and launch a start-up within a 10 months cycle. As a family, we very firmly believe that it takes a diversity of culture, race, and skills working together in unity to bring heaven to Earth and help make people more like Christ in an authentic and personal fashion. It is with that endeavour in mind that we have both been involved in Young adult, youth, and children ministry for about 10 years. Over the past 10 years, our youth and Young adult ministry work through our dear local church and our business in South Africa has been both prolific and life-changing! We have seen and experienced so much from lives saved, parents and families counselled and reunited, youth set ablaze for Christ, and children turning into youth leaders leading others. We have furthermore seen so many young people launch startup businesses to pay for school fees, and groceries at home or to simply help pay for their parent's medical bills.
It is therefore with great joy (and a pinch of sorrow) that we want to let you know that we have decided to relocate our family to Gabon, Libreville for the next 12 to 24 months as we feel led to do something new. For some of you reading this the reaction will probably be “It’s about time!!” and for some others “Noooo!” but the common question for sure will always be “Why?”. What propelled this radical decision? The first honest reason is God prompting us for a new season which typically requires radical decisions.
Needless to say, this wasn’t anywhere near our plans even a year ago and yet here we are. It has taken prayers, counsel, and many talks with our local leaders and friends to arrive at this decision that neither of us takes lightly. We could share with you the countless plans and ideas we have for Gabon but quite frankly, we’ve simply resigned ourselves to go and wait to see what God does. And here is a verse we hold firmly onto Isaiah 6:8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying “whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”. Here we are as the Langard-Okenkali tribe...send us. A scary and exciting prayer isn't it?
The second reason is a little more practical. As the man in the family and the foreigner in the pack to the land of South Africa (yes, when we go to Gabon, Lucy will be the foreigner- role reverse) the new Immigration law recently rectified in February 2023 with regards to relative visas states: "Holders of a Relatives Visa may not work, study or conduct a business. Spouses and permanent life partners of a South African citizen or permanent resident may apply for an endorsement or authorization to work, study, or conduct a business while residing in South Africa. This will then change their status to a Visitor’s Visa (Section 11)."
My spousal visa titled " relative visa" no longer allows me to work nor carry any form of business activities within the country. After multiple attempts to obtain a more favorable visa this year, our efforts have remained in vain.
Lastly, it has always been a deep desire for us as a family to bring the concept of one-one discipleship as well as accountability into the culture of francophone churches in Africa. Furthermore, the idea of planting an Entrepreleaders School hub in a French-speaking country, our other home, and working alongside the new government and the local church to create employment locally has equally been a long-term ambition of ours.