UMCOR / News Room / Hotline News Update / Archives 2009
  • July 21, 2009

The UMCOR Hotline

In Today's Hotline:

*PHILIPPINES: UMCOR Opens New Office

*US: Clothes for Arriving Refugees

*ZIMBABWE: Cheering for Pencils

*JFON: Restoring Temporary Status

PHILIPPINES: UMCOR OPENS NEW OFFICE

UMCOR will open an office in the Philippines on July 24 to help bring relief to a population vulnerable to natural disasters, civil conflict and extreme poverty. Based on the campus of Union Theological Seminary in Cavite, about 50 miles south of Manila, UMCOR Philippines will serve as the communications hub between United Methodist conferences within the Philippines and the US. The office will also offer an on-site storage facility for material goods and relief supplies.

Bishops, disaster response coordinators and partner organizations will gather at UMCOR Philippines on July 21-24 to participate in a disaster preparedness training led by Melissa Crutchfield, head of UMCOR’s International Disaster Response and Lisa Jackson, head of special projects, to implement appropriate responses to different phases of disaster.

Support the new office with your gifts to Philippines Emergency, UMCOR Advance #240235. Click the button to give now online

US: CLOTHES FOR ARRIVING REFUGEES

Every year Denver, Colorado becomes home to hundreds of resettled refugees. Although the government provides resources, arriving refugee families often struggle to meet their basic needs.

Marsha Carey, a member of Green Mountain United Methodist Church, is organizing a clothing drive for newly-arriving refugees from local resettlement agencies like Ecumenical Refugee Services and African Ministries. The event will take place from Sunday, July 26 through Tuesday, July 28 at Christ United Methodist Church in Denver which graciously donated their space for the cause.

“We are trying to help these kids get off to a really good start,” said Carey. “It is my belief that when you offer children clothing and school supplies in anticipation of their new adventures in American schools, they feel special.”

Learn more about this story in UMCOR’s Refugee Ministry Newsletter, and give to New Hope for Newcomers, UMCOR Advance #901779. Online Giving

ZIMBABWE: CHEERING FOR PENCILS

Amidst Zimbabwe’s rising inflation and famine struggles, resources are scarce and expensive, particularly for those living in remote areas. Most communities do not have access to basic necessities such as food or clean water, much less educational materials that provide hope for the future.

UMCOR, in coordination with the United Methodist Church in Zimbabwe, distributed school kits to over 400 children in rural Mutumbami, a remote region in eastern Zimbabwe in July. When the contents of the school kits were described to the students, cheers followed.

“Notebooks (smiles, clapping), scissors (smiles, clapping), an eraser, a ruler, crayons (more smiles and clapping), pencils (LOUD CHEERS!!!),” related Melissa Crutchfield, UMCOR executive for International Disaster Response. “I suddenly and humbly realized that something most Americans consider so commonplace was valued so highly in this place.”

You can help bring smiles and relief to those in need by giving to Zimbabwe Emergency, UMCOR Advance #199456. Online Giving

JFON: RESTORING TEMPORARY STATUS

In 1998, Miguel Silva* and his wife fled Honduras and entered the US to escape the devastation of Hurricane Mitch. In 1999, the US extended Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to Hondurans and El Salvadorans who had been displaced because of the hurricane.

When the Silvas came to the US, they settled in New Orleans and following Hurricane Katrina, resettled in Eastern Iowa. They applied for and benefited from TPS each year since 1999.

When Miguel’s status was threatened, the Justice for Our Neighbors (JFON) clinic in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, helped prove that the US Center of Immigration Services (USCIS) was basing their denial on a conviction that was dismissed. JFON wrote a legal brief to USCIS explaining this error and proved that Miguel was entitled to renew his TPS status.

Support JFON’s ministry which helps immigrants resolve difficult legal matters by giving to JFON, UMCOR Advance #901285. Online Giving

*Name has been changed.

UMCOR provides emergency relief in many areas of the world. To find out more about UMCOR's ministries, please visit umcor.org. 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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