By Elliott Wright*
STAMFORD, CT., October 9, 2007 - The United Methodist Church is increasing its support for a ministry that assists people from Zimbabwe who are fleeing into South Africa to escape food shortages and economic chaos at home.
Directors of the denomination's General Board of Global Ministries, meeting in Stamford, launched an appeal for funds by contributing $2,388 at the conclusion of a "poverty banquet." Those contributions and a new grant by the denomination's relief unit will assist the Ray of Hope program at Central Methodist Church and …
Liberia - Preventing malaria
When Marthalyne Saye became ill with malaria, she went to the Ganta United Methodist Hospital Primary Health Care Unit in Liberia for help. In fact, fifty percent of outpatients who come to Ganta have the same complaint. A mosquito net was the answer to her problem.
Since receiving her first mosquito net six months ago Marthalyne has not fallen ill with malaria.
CENTRAL AMERICA: HURRICANE FELIX RESPONSE
UMCOR is assisting Hurricane Felix survivors in Nicaragua, Guatemala and Honduras through Church World Service.
Hurricane Felix hit Central America coastlines on Sept. 4 impacting at least 35,000 people. Nicaragua was the most affected. There is special concern for the 14,000 Miskito Indians who were not able to evacuate. Some 5,500 homes have been destroyed in that region.
PALESTINE: GAZA ASSISTANCE
Renewed fighting in June in addition to the already-dire circumstances in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank has left many residents in these areas especially vulnerable. UMCOR partners through Action by Churches Together are helping a total of 9,500 families with purchasing food and other basic necessities. Health centers in both regions are also receiving additional staff and supplies to ensure basic health needs are met.
Your prayers and support are needed to bolster these people in need.
By Linda Beher
STAMFORD, CT, April 24, 2007-Economically vulnerable Sri Lankans who are still finding their footing after the 2004 tsunami are among those to receive aid worth millions of dollars. The action was among several approved April 24 by the board of United Methodist Committee on Relief meeting in Stamford, Conn., and adding to more than $7.6 million.
The aid bolsters a "challenging, complex and often dangerous environment," the Sri Lanka request stated in part. Total granted to the Sri Lanka project was $4,715,395. UMCOR board president Bishop Edward W.
SOUTHERN AFRICA: GIVING RELIEF THROUGH SHADE
UMCOR is working with SHADE (Sojourner: Help, Advocacy, Development, Education), a ministry of the Methodist Church of Southern Africa that addresses issues of hunger and poor nutrition among women with HIV/AIDS, their children and orphans. SHADE provides feeding centers, food distribution as well as nutrition classes and help for agricultural projects.
In the past year SHADE reached thousands of people in six countries with their programs.
FLORIDA: TORNADO RECOVERY
UMCOR is helping Central Florida residents recover from the violent storms and tornadoes that swept the region early last Friday morning. UMCOR is working with the Florida Annual Conference to provide relief and recovery assistance in the counties affected.
NIGERIA: COMBATING MALARIA
Mrs. Monica, of Kassa, Nigeria, got to work immediately after the week-long training she received through the United Methodist Community-Based Malaria Control Program. She eliminated items around her home that could harbor mosquitoes and taught her neighbors to do the same. Then she helped her community by paying for local children affected by malaria to receive treatment and encouraged pregnant women to be tested as well.
Mrs. Monica is just one of thousands who are benefiting from the Community-Based Malaria Control Program.
Mrs. Monica, of Kassa, Nigeria, got to work immediately after the week-long training. She asked her husband to cut down or trim trees growing around their home that could harbor mosquitoes. She emptied all containers that could potentially hold stagnant water and become a mosquito breeding ground. She taught her neighbors to do the same. She paid for malaria treatment for some of the children in Kassa, and made sure pregnant women were tested for the disease as well.
Malaria-Part of Life
GUATEMALA: BUILDING FOR THE FUTURE
UMCOR continues to help people in Central America recover what they lost in 2005 from Hurricane Stan and subsequent storms. One of UMCOR's partners in the region, Rights Action, is providing for immediate needs for families left homeless and jobless from the storm-triggered mudslides in the region. The organization is also helping them move towards a better, more stable future.