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UMCOR Hotline 12 Jul 2005: Caribbean, USA, Sudan

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News and Press Release
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Originally published
CARRIBEAN: UMCOR ASSISTS IN HURRICANE DENNIS RECOVERY

Last week Hurricane Dennis took 38 lives in Cuba and Haiti. The storm left a swath of destruction destroying homes, crops, and livestock. Reports on specific damage in both countries are taking time due to power outages and downed phone lines.

UMCOR released emergency funds this week to assist in Haiti's recovery. In the Cayes area alone at least 200 homes were damaged, 30 were completely destroyed, and 700 head of livestock were lost in the storm.

Cuba also suffered extreme damage, especially in the eastern part of the country. Almost entire communities were wiped out by the storm surge and 150-mph winds. Additionally, several Methodist churches and home churches were destroyed. Rev. Ernesto Betancourt, pastor of the San Pablo Methodist Church in Camaguey asks for your prayers for the people in Eastern Cuba who are suffering so much. UMCOR is assessing the situation in Cuba for the most effective response to this urgent need.

Your gifts to UMCOR Advance #982523, Hurricanes 2005 Global, will help those affected by Hurricane Dennis in the Caribbean and in the US. If you would prefer that your funds to go to recovery in a specific region, please note that on your donation.

US: CLEAN-UP BEGINS AFTER HURRICANE DENNIS

Hurricane Dennis continues to cause flooding as it moves inland after causing destruction in Alabama and the Florida Panhandle where it made landfall in the US. This storm followed a similar path to Hurricane Ivan which caused cataclysmic damage in these regions just 10 months ago. People still recovering from Ivan are now dealing with the compounded damaged from Dennis. UMCOR is working to alleviate suffering and assist in relief efforts.

UMCOR Disaster Response Executive, Tom Hazelwood, traveled to Mobile, AL, Tuesday to help with relief and recovery efforts. Mobile is one of the many areas in the southeast affected by this category 3 storm.

Dennis is causing major flooding as it moves inland. Atlanta residents are cleaning up after Dennis dumped six to seven inches of rain in streams and creeks already swollen from Hurricane Cindy's rains. In areas of South Atlanta and Cobb County the water reached rooftops.

Jim Cox a consultant to UMCOR lives in the region. He reported that the flooding from the rising creeks and streams in some areas is unprecedented. As a result many people do not have flood insurance. This will cause great hardship for those whose homes sustained severe flood damage.

YOU CAN HELP IN HURRICANE RECOVERY

GIVE: Your financial gift to UMCOR Advance #982523, Hurricanes 2005 Global, will help those affected by Hurricane Dennis and in the storms to come in this already-active hurricane season. If you would prefer that your funds to go to recovery in a specific region, please note that on your donation.

SEND: Flood Buckets filled with cleaning supplies that people use to clean their homes after floods and hurricanes are needed. For assembly and shipping instructions, call UMCOR Sager Brown at 1-800-814-8765 or visit the UMCOR website at http://gbgm-umc.org/umcor/print/kits/. You may also give a financial donation to to UMCOR's Material Resource Ministry, Advance #901440 to purchase cleaning supplies that the Depot staff and volunteers will use to assemble flood buckets.

GO: If you would like to volunteer to help in the Hurricane Dennis recovery call the Volunteer Hotline toll free at 1-800-918-3100.

SUDAN: DARFUR PEACE STEP EVOKES CAUTIOUS OPTIMISM FROM MISSION LEADERS

Ground rules to resolve three years of conflict in Darfur, Sudan's troubled western region, have drawn "cautious optimism" from United Methodist mission executives. The rules were announced on July 6 in Abuja, Nigeria. "We are cautiously optimistic that a major step has been taken today in the cause of peace and stability in Sudan," said a joint statement from the Rev. R. Randy Day, chief executive of General Board of Global Ministries, and the Rev. Paul Dirdak, director of UMCOR.

UMCOR opened operations inside Darfur earlier this year. Aid workers are constructing a reception center, family shelters, and sanitation facilities at a 200,000-resident displaced persons camp at Al Ferdous, in South Darfur. As peace and stability slowly return to Darfur, Rev. Dirdak said he expects the Darfur project will be long-term, "UMCOR made a commitment to the region before formal peace agreements were reached," he said, "and we expect to provide recovery and relief efforts for years to come."

To contribute to UMCOR's important work in Sudan, give to UMCOR Advance #184385, Sudan Emergency.

UMCOR provides emergency relief in many areas of the world. To find out more about UMCOR's ministries, please visit http://gbgm-umc.org/umcor/ . You can donate to any project by placing a contribution in the offering plate at a local United Methodist church; by sending a check to UMCOR, PO Box 9068, New York, NY 10087-9068; or by calling 1-800-554-8583, where credit card donations are accepted. UMCOR is exempt from tax under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of the United States and qualifies for the maximum charitable contribution deduction by donors.