February 22, 2005
Iran: UMCOR Plans Earthquake Response
A powerful earthquake razed villages in Iran overnight. Reuters reports estimated the death toll at nearly 400 people and injuries at hundreds more. Many villagers remain unaccounted for. Poor weather conditions have hampered rescue efforts. The mountainous region in southeast Iran is only 160 miles from Bam, devastated a year ago by an earthquake that killed 31,000 people. Temporary shelter will be critical in the wintry rain. UMCOR will send emergency relief supplies and other aid. Your gifts to UMCOR Advance #624315, Iran Earthquake, will assist in a meaningful way.
South Asia: Young Humanitarians Demonstrate Heart, Generosity
From coast to coast, young United Methodists have shown that humanitarian service need not be the sole province of adults. UMCOR has enjoyed the following stories:
- As she planned her birthday party, a nine-year-old girl from Plano, TX, decided she had plenty of "stuff." Instead, Taylor invited her friends to donate cash for tsunami relief. She raised $280 and sent a check to UMCOR because she learned that the agency takes no administrative costs from Advance donations.
- A 13-year-old Oklahoman has assembled over 100 health kits for shipment to UMCOR. Stanley is setting the example at Watonga's First United Methodist Church.
- Children at the Mei Wah Day Care and After School Program, based at New York City's Chinese United Methodist Church, collected over $3,100 for UMCOR's South Asia Emergency fund.
- First grader Matthew from Christ United Methodist Church in Franklin, TN, staged a tsunami benefit concert last Saturday. He hoped to raise $5,000 for UMCOR relief efforts in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand, and Somalia.
- Church school students in Bremerton, WA, and Malibu, CA, designed greeting cards for UMCOR relief workers in South Asia. UMCOR mailed all cards to our staff member in Sri Lanka.
We thank these and all of the other young humanitarians who have supported UMCOR's response for their examples of service, generous donations of material resources and their cash gifts to UMCOR Advance #274305, South Asia Emergency.
Resources for You: New Bulletin Insert on Iraq, Updated Facts on Global Hunger
Several hundred Baghdad children have some new tools to manage their often bewildering and sometimes frightening world. Gunfire and live munitions threaten such ordinary tasks as walking to school. UMCOR and Save the Children offer role-playing projects in which youth and schoolchildren can work through their fears and gain confidence. A new worship bulletin insert is available online that describes this ministry of compassion, made possible through your donations to UMCOR Advance #623225, Iraq Emergency.
Another resource, "Ten Facts About World Hunger and Poverty," incorporates examples of UMCOR programs with facts that may surprise you and will heighten awareness. Example: Media cover stories abound on the obesity epidemic, but did you know that the leading cause of death in the world is underweight due to malnutrition? Learn more - download the brochure for printing locally and sharing right away. Or in March, order multiple copies free (plus postage and handling) from the General Board of Global Ministries' Service Center. A donation to UMCOR Advance #982920, World Hunger and Poverty, will help to eradicate suffering through ecologically sustainable, creative solutions.
One Great Hour of Sharing: Updated DVD Shows UMCOR at Work
"Be There" is a thoughtful reflection on the way that the people of the United Methodist Church engage in mission. It provides a great context for receiving the One Great Hour of Sharing offering on March 6. The 7-minute DVD shows UMCOR at work in areas of humanitarian development, refugee and immigration ministries, alleviation of hunger and poverty, and disaster response. The new resource also contains an inspirational music segment that can be used during worship. The One Great Hour of Sharing offering is crucial to UMCOR because it covers our administrative costs - and enables us to dedicate 100 percent of your "second-mile" gifts to the Advance project you select. So act now! Order your free One Great Hour of Sharing DVD, "Be There" by calling toll free, 1-888-346-3862. And then be sure to receive the offering. Your gifts answer Jesus' call to "be there" for others.
United States: Join the Blue Tarp Gang - Help With Hurricane Recovery
If you're planning a mission trip this spring or summer, consider joining the "blue tarp gang." You can help speed roof replacement all over Florida and other regions devastated by last year's multiple hurricanes. Thousands of volunteers are needed to do the "heavy lifting" of rebuilding roofs, walls, and interiors for homes in the Southeast. Blue tarps - temporary coverings for damaged roofs - dot the countryside all over the region. Much work remains in areas of Alabama as well. UMCOR's volunteer hotline will act as a clearinghouse for the many sites that need volunteers. To find out where the needs are greatest and obtain a local contact, please call toll free, 1-800-918-3100. Or let your generous contributions go for you-please give to UMCOR Advance #982410, Hurricanes 2004.
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. 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.
Get the free UMCOR Hotline
Telephone: 1-800-841-1235; Web: http://gbgm-umc.org/UMCOR-Hotline/
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United Methodist Committee on Relief
Young United Methodists have supported UMCOR. Children at the Mei Wah Day Care and After School Program in New York City collected over $3,100 for UMCOR's South Asia Emergency fund. Taylor, a nine-year-old girl from Texas, raised $280 at her birthday party for UMCOR. These gifts add to the total of $15 million that UMCOR has received for tsunami relief and recovery.
A new UMCOR bulletin insert, "Iraq: Dream of a Safe Future," describes UMCOR's work with Iraqi children and youth in Basrah to help them cope with their daily life and offer them hope for a safe future. Courtesy of Save the Children.
"10 Facts About World Hunger/Poverty" is a two-color brochure that can be downloaded from this web page, printed, and reproduced.
"Be There," a new free 7-minute DVD shows UMCOR at work.
More Information About UMCOR's Work