The UMCOR Hotline
2009 marked a year of new opportunities for UMCOR to open doors with new offices, new resources, new opportunities for disaster trainings, and a new birthing kit added to UMCOR’s relief supplies. Through grant awards, partnerships, and your gifts, UMCOR expands it operations and network of partners to reach underserved communities. 2009 also brought new resources for United Methodist congregations, with new tools to strengthen and equip congregations in their health ministries.
In this special UMCOR Hotline, we highlight UMCOR’s areas of new hope, while continuing its mission to alleviate human suffering around the world. Thanks be to God for you and your faithful commitment to those in need. May the blessings of Christmas be with you today and always.
In Today's Hotline:
ZIMBABWE: A Door to Zimbabwe
UMCOR: UMCOR Opens New Offices
JFON: JFON Adds Bay Area Clinic
SIERRE LEONE: Gifts Increase Health Capacity
UMCOR: UMCOR Initiates Fair Trade Challenge
SAGER BROWN: UMCOR Adds New Birthing Kit
CHILE: UMCOR Builds Disaster Response Network
RESOURCES: New Tools for United Methodist Churches
WORLDWIDE: UMCOR Responds to Three Emergencies
COLOMBIA: UMCOR Expands Micro-Enterprise For Refugees
ZIMBABWE: A DOOR TO ZIMBABWE
Through multiple partnerships, UMCOR gains a stable presence in Zimbabwe, opening a door of hope for ongoing humanitarian relief to a nation in conflict.
UMCOR Health and UMCOR International Disaster Response worked closely with annual conference partners including Baltimore-Washington, Western Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and the United Methodist Church in Zimbabwe to provide food, clean water, medicine, school kits, and long-lasting insecticide-treated mosquito nets to communities in need.
UMCOR, through Zoe Ministry, a program North Carolina Annual Conference, Nyadire Connection, a ministry of Western Pennsylvania Annual Conference, and First UMC in Mansfield, Texas, helped United Methodist hospitals continue operations when many hospitals were forced to close and cholera outbreaks were widespread. Cholera kits provided by IDA Netherlands were sent to Nyadire and Mutambara Hospitals to treat 2,600 people. UMCOR worked with Nyadire Connection to rehabilitate water systems which brought access to clean water. Through the Baltimore-Washington Conference, 10,000 mosquito nets were distributed to at-risk communities.
UMCOR’s non-governmental organization, with Zoe Ministry and the United Methodist Church in Zimbabwe, delivered a total of 500 metric tons of grain throughout 12 UMC districts in Zimbabwe, as part of a broader distribution facilitated in 2008. The relief supplies benefited more than 16,000 vulnerable families. Through Africa University, UMCOR provided additional food relief to vulnerable families for six months.
Through partners Muslim Aid, GlobalMedic, Foundations for Hospices in Sub-Saharan Africa, IDA Netherlands, and IMA World health, additional medicines, medical supplies, and water filters were provided to hospitals and communities in need.
Support this ongoing relief work by giving to Zimbabwe Emergency, UMCOR Advance #199456.
UMCOR: UMCOR OPENS NEW OFFICES
UMCOR opened two new offices to serve disaster needs in the US and abroad.
UMCOR’s Western Jurisdiction Office and Depot in Salt Lake City opened its doors in May to serve as a material resources depot to assemble, store and ship UMCOR supply kits. The facility provides new opportunities for kit ministry in the Western Jurisdiction and helps reduce shipping costs and efficiency when areas affected by disaster are in the western part of the US or in Asia.
UMCOR Philippines opened in July to help bring relief to a population vulnerable to natural disasters, civil conflict and extreme poverty. UMCOR Philippines serves as the communications hub between United Methodist conferences within the Philippines and the US. The office offers an on-site storage facility for material goods and relief supplies.
Support these two offices by giving to Material Resources, UMCOR Advance #901440, or Philippines Emergency, UMCOR Advance #240235.
JFON: JFON ADDS BAY AREA CLINIC
Justice for Our Neighbors (JFON), an UMCOR immigration legal clinic, opened a JFON Bay Area ministry at Temple UMC in San Francisco, California through the California-Nevada Annual Conference.
JFON’s 27th clinic in the US, JFON Bay Area was started by Lupe Afu, a college student who worked as an intern for JFON Baltimore-Washington through GBGM’s summer internship program. Afu returned home and got her church involved to help immigrants and asylum seekers.
JFON provides free, professional legal services to immigrants in monthly clinics. This UMCOR program connects a national network of church-based, volunteer-led immigration clinics to asylum seekers and immigrants who need a helping hand with difficult immigration laws. You can help reunite families with a gift to JFON, UMCOR Advance #901285.
SIERRE LEONE: GIFTS INCREASE HEALTH CAPACITY
Generous grant support to UMCOR expanded operational service capacity at Kissy United Methodist Hospital in Sierre Leone. Additional funding increased malaria prevention support to UMCOR’s partner Nothing But Nets.
A $450,000 grant from USAID’s American Schools and Hospital’s Abroad (ASHA) Program to doubles the capacity of the Maternal and Child Health unit of the UMCOR-supported Kissy United Methodist Hospital. Kissy’s outpatient area, maternal bed space, consulting rooms, pharmacy, laboratory and radiology departments increased efficiency and expanded to serve more patients in need.
A gift of approximately $130,000 from the German Central Conference was granted to Nothing But Nets to support malaria prevention initiatives in Sierra Leone.
Prevent malaria with your gifts to Community-Based Malaria Control, UMCOR Advance #982009 or Nothing But Nets.
UMCOR: UMCOR INITIATES FAIR TRADE CHALLENGE
At the end of a year-long challenge 100-Ton Fair Trade Challenge, United Methodists purchased 82.4 tons (or over 164,000 pounds) of fairly traded coffee, tea, chocolate and snacks through UMCOR’s partner, Equal Exchange, and 448 United Methodist churches newly-joined the UMCOR Coffee Project.
Despite the weakening US economy and slowing sales growth nationwide, fair trade product sales rose nearly 20 percent from the previous year as a result of the Challenge, totaling over $1.3 million. Support small-scale farmers by giving to UMCOR-SA&D Program, UMCOR Advance #982188.
SAGER BROWN: UMCOR ADDS NEW BIRTHING KIT
UMCOR added a birthing kit to its list of relief supplies to help birth attendants in developing countries conduct clean and safe deliveries. The $8 birthing kit contains basic yet essential items such as soap, latex gloves, plastic sheeting to receive the baby, string and a clean razor blade to cut and tie the umbilical cord, two receiving blankets and a zip lock bag.
Without the basic, sanitary tools for delivery, newborns can develop a Tetanus infection, the leading cause of infant mortality.
Support the birthing kit initiative and promote safe and healthy deliveries by assembling its contents now. Download the birthing kit instructions here, or give to Material Resources, UMCOR Advance #901440,
CHILE: UMCOR BUILDS DISASTER RESPONSE NETWORK
Chile is a country vulnerable to earthquakes, volcano eruptions, floods and mudslides. UMCOR helped to implement a humanitarian response system in Chile through Iglesia Metodista en Chile (IMECH), and in collaboration with the Chilean Oficina Nacional de Emergencia del Ministerio del Interior.
UMCOR provided disaster response training and support to IMECH, Ministerio Social Methodista (MISOM) and Equipo Metodista de Acción Humanitaria (EMAH) district coordinators in helping to build a disaster response network to prepare for future disasters. The training fostered networking opportunities with local authorities and relevant partners in the emergency response field.
Support life saving training workshops like this by giving to International Disaster Response, UMCOR Advance #982450.
RESOURCES: NEW TOOLS FOR UNITED METHODIST CHURCHES
New health resources were developed this year to strengthen and equip United Methodist churches everywhere.
“Working Toward an AIDS-Free World: An Educational Kit for United Methodist Churches,” is an online resource developed by the United Methodist Global AIDS Fund team to equip churches with specific AIDS-related information that will address fear, stigma and myths associated with HIV virus. A new media tool about UM Global AIDS Fund projects entitled Hope for an AIDS-Free World, is also available for churches to share with their congregation.
UMCOR’s “Introduction to Health Ministry for United Methodist Congregations” is a booklet that provides practical tools to help churches develop an effective health ministry. The how-to booklet shares basic health ministry models and ideas for resource development.
Support these ministries by giving to UM Global AIDS Fund, UMCOR Advance #982345, or Congregational Health Ministries, UMCOR Advance #3021045.
WORLDWIDE: UMCOR RESPONDS TO THREE EMERGENCIES
UMCOR responded to the immediate needs of thousands of people affected by natural disasters that hit just days apart in the Philippines, Samoa and Indonesia.
In the Philippines, two powerful typhoons, Ketsana and Parma, caused widespread devastation, displacing more than 567,000 people because of massive flooding and landslides. In Tonga, Samoa and American Samoa, four tsunamis swept through the South Pacific islands killing hundreds of people and forcing tens of thousands from their homes. In Indonesia, two earthquakes occurred in two days, killing more than 600 people.
UMCOR provides ongoing relief to affected communities and is working to develop long-term recovery plans. Please give to South Pacific Earthquake and Tsunamis, UMCOR Advance #982450, Indonesia Emergency, UMCOR Advance #217400, and Philippines Emergency, UMCOR Advance #240235.
COLOMBIA: UMCOR EXPANDS MICRO-ENTERPRISE FOR REFUGEES
Years of armed conflict in Colombia generated one of the largest displacements in the world. .UMCOR is helping Colombian refugees resettle in Chile by expanding micro-enterprise opportunities for the most vulnerable.
Through a $33,000 grant from UMCOR and in partnership with Church World Service Refugee Integration Program and United Methodist Volunteers in Missions (UMVIM), volunteers are working with the micro-enterprise program in Santiago, Chile and the northern city of Arica, where there are significant populations of displaced Colombian refugees and asylum seekers. The program will increase congregational involvement in the Refugee Integration Services Program (PROSIR) in Chile, as well as increase and strengthen the capacity of Methodist church leaders.
To volunteer with this project, please visit the UMVIM website or email UMCORRefugee@gbgm-umc.org for more information. Support sojourners by giving to Refugee Response Advance #982540.
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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