Continuing and escalating civil unrest in Haiti has led United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM) to cancel all summer mission trips to Haiti until further notice. Additionally, the return of GBGM missionaries has been delayed until the situation calms. The new UMCOR field office in Haiti is also monitoring developments and plans to resume its work as soon as the situation permits.
UMCOR continues to support Haitians in need through services like the Haiti Hot Lunch Program. The Methodist Church of Haiti provides hot lunches to children in 93 schools through the Methodist school system. This is the only hot meal many children will eat during the day. About 17,000 children receive a hot meal every day. You can help this vital program continue and grow by giving to UMCOR Advance #418790, Haiti Hot Lunch Program.
Chile: Major Earthquake
Northern Chile was rocked by a powerful 7.9 magnitude earthquake last week. It is one of the largest ever recorded in the area and damaged many Methodist churches and schools. The Methodist School Kusaypu where many vulnerable children attend sustained such damage that classes are cancelled until repairs make the school safe for the students. Many adobe homes in the nearby village of Pachica were also destroyed in the quake.
Volunteers are needed to help with repairs and recovery. If you are interested in going to Chile as a volunteer email Mission Volunteers at email@example.com for contact information for your United Methodist Volunteers in Mission jurisdictional and conference coordinators. They will provide details on creating and training a team as well as scheduling details. For information on what other disaster sites are currently scheduling volunteers call the Volunteer Hotline at 800-918-3100.
Africa: Famine Threat Grows
Food shortages from the lack of rain, locust infestations, and a breakdown of civil infrastructures are causing famines in southern, western, and eastern African nations. Severe famine conditions are already present in several countries and food aid is unable to meet the increasing demands. The immediate need for food assistance in these areas is only one facet of the problems famine creates. Their crops destroyed, people have begun eating their seed supplies for lack of an alternate food source. Even if there is plenty of rain for the next planting season, there will be nothing to plant.
UMCOR is supporting Action by Churches Together in their emergency feeding program. UMCOR also works with local Methodist churches at their request in providing emergency food, seeds, and tools to their communities. Your gift to UMCOR Advance #101250, All Africa Drought/Famine Relief can help alleviate human suffering.