UMCOR / News Room / Hotline News Update / Archives 2008
  • May 06, 2008

The UMCOR Hotline

In Today's Hotline:

*MYANMAR: Cyclone Nargis Response

*US: Tornado Responses

*SIERRA LEONE: Helping Expectant Moms

*WORLD FAIR TRADE DAY— Join UMCOR’s 100-Ton Challenge


UMCOR is working with its partner Church World Service to bring emergency relief to thousands of people affected by Tropical Cyclone Nargis which tore through the Irrawaddy Delta on May 3, before slamming into Myanmar’s (Burma) largest city of Yangon. According to a Reuters news report, the current death toll is 22,500 with a further 41,000 missing.

UMCOR is supporting CWS and its partner agencies and anticipates working with additional partners to provide relief and recovery assistance for the people of Myanmar. Immediate relief operations and comprehensive damage assessments are underway.

The tropical storm devastated city streets with overturned cars, fallen trees and debris. Many villages in the Irrawaddy Delta were flattened by the fierce winds and rain. On Haing-gyi Island, along the country’s southwest coast, an estimated 20,000 homes have been destroyed, displacing several hundred thousands of residents. Many are without food, water, shelter or power. Please pray and give to Myanmar Emergency, UMCOR Advance #3019674 to help in the relief effort. Online Giving


UMCOR is helping the Arkansas, Mississippi and Virginia Annual Conferences respond to several tornados that whipped through the southern states on May 1 and 2. The deadly storms damaged or destroyed several hundred homes and knocked out electrical power. An estimated 200 people were injured in Virginia and seven people were killed in Arkansas.

UMCOR is in contact with the respective conference directors to assess the damage, help with the long-term recovery plans, and is providing assistance to help meet emergency needs.

Arkansas has received the brunt of numerous tornadoes that tore through the south since Feb 5 leaving little breathing room for recovery. In Suffolk, Va., and Mississippi there is extensive damage as several houses were destroyed and commercial structures are considered to be complete losses. Please help us support these annual conferences and other southern states affected by these storms with your gifts to Domestic Disaster Response, UMCOR Advance # 901670. Online Giving


Janet Bio, the head midwife at Kissy United Methodist Hospital in Freetown, Sierre Leone is a busy and sought-out woman. Twice a week about 200 women line up outside the hospital to receive the quality prenatal care she provides.

Those who come to the prenatal clinic heard about Bio through friends, family or even on the public bus. Bio’s track record for delivery success speaks for itself. She has delivered more than 5,000 babies in the 12 years she has been at Kissy Hospital.

Bio also trains traditional birth attendants, who may lack medical training, to help reduce maternal mortality rates. Kissy’s prenatal clinic helps hundreds of women deliver healthy babies and educates mothers-to-be about malaria, HIV/AIDS and nutrition.

You can learn more about the health work at Kissy Hospital by viewing UMCOR’s new photo slideshow— Health Care in Sierre Leone. This slideshow offers a glimpse into the hands-on work of love and care ministered by Kissy Hospital’s Taiama Clinic staff in Bo.

Your gifts to Hospital Revitalization Program, Advance #982168 support programs like these that help women and their babies. Online Giving


World Fair Trade Day is May 10. Endorsed by the International Fair Trade Association, a global association consisting of over 300 fair trade organizations, World Fair Trade Day calls on all of us to participate by purchasing fair trade products and encouraging conventional companies to sell more fair trade goods.

Please support this effort by joining UMCOR’s 100-Ton Challenge. The 12-month campaign, which ends next year on May 9, 2009, encourages United Methodists to help increase the amount of fairly-traded coffee, tea, chocolate and snacks purchased through the UMCOR Coffee Project and its partner Equal Exchange, a 100 percent fair trade, worker-owned co-operative. By participating in the 100-Ton Challenge, you are helping farmers in Latin America, Africa, Asia and the United States stay on their land, earn fair prices for their crops, and support their families.

Visit UMCOR’s 100-Ton Challenge web page for more information and for available resources. You can also help small-scale farmers through your gifts to Sustainable Agriculture and Development, UMCOR Advance #982188. Click the button to give now online

UMCOR provides emergency relief in many areas of the world. To find out more about UMCOR's ministries, please visit 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. You can also give online by clicking on any of the "Give Now" links. 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.

And, please pray for those who are hungry, displaced, sick or in poverty because of these and other natural and human-made disasters, and for the workers who minister to them.

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