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Haiti – Review of Activity from Rick Ireland

  -March 16th, 2010 @ 8:42 am
  • We arranged for a distribution out of the that impacted 700 families and an distribution out of the Delmas 53 church that impacted an additional 700 families. Both of these were arranged by Jean Marc Zamor who is leading the Haitian relief effort under the direction of a steering committee appointed by the Haitian Board of Superintendents.
  • We distributed food and other supplies to 3,054 church members, employees, FOHO employees and other mission staff.
  • Money has been given to the West and South District superintendents to meet food, water and medical needs of the churches in the impact area. We have specifically asked the superintendents and pastors to see that both churched and un-churched people benefit.
  • We have run three vaccination campaigns in three different locations, vaccinating 646 people against the diseases that will soon begin to rear their heads. The vaccine came from the government, the labor from church volunteers.
  • We held a free medical clinic in , staffed by Haitian doctors and nurses (a first), that treated more than 200 people. Additional clinics are planned. The supplies came from other aid groups, the labor from church volunteers.
  • We gathered and trained children’s workers from churches in the West and South Districts, and set up safe play areas where children can step out of misery and have fun. We have discovered that even before the formal effort, many churches were already impacting their community with children’s programming. Through both donated money and items acquired from other aid groups, we are working to actively enhance this effort which has an impact vastly greater than the local churches themselves.
  • We arranged for a team of engineers to begin the process of evaluating church properties, schools and pastors’ homes. Additional teams are being planned.
  • With the help of Linda Adams and of International Child Care Ministries, 230,000 meals will be distributed to the impact area. We are specifically targeting the churches in communities that have had little or no access to aid. Sadly, there are too many of those.
  • We have scheduled training (by Asbury Seminary staff) for pastors and church leaders designed to help them with the trauma of recent events so they can help the people they serve. This training will happen at the end of March.
  • We have had a leadership summit with key Haitian and U.S. leaders to both review the relief effort and to look toward the future of the U.S./Haitian Church relationship.
  • We have begun funding grants to assist pastors to demolish homes and build temporary shelters (something more than a tent) until more permanent housing solutions can happen. Pastors who have land are already offering space to their landless colleagues to get them out of sub-standard tent communities. We are also exploring the possibility of establishing temporary communities to get people out of unsafe camps.
  • We are now able to wire money into the Mission bank account and write checks on it. A team is currently here in rebuilding the financial system from 1/1/2010 so we will have accurate and up-to-date financial reporting.
  • Teams have reroofed the church at , done repair work at church and repaired the church at . They are currently working on both the church and school at Greffin.

Give Now

Clear Blue Water Project Drill Rig Has Arrived!!

  -March 8th, 2010 @ 2:36 pm

GOOD NEWS!!
The has arrived in .

Many helped make this happen but especially Healing Hands International.

Now we need money to go directly to drilling expenses (fuel, casing, bits, pumps, etc.) so that we can get as many wells as possible providing this spring when the need is greatest. We are actively working on getting a shipping container of pumps directly from the manufacturer in India purchased and shipped to Haiti. These pumps are the critical piece for the ongoing delivery of . We can get a limited supply of pumps in Haiti for about $1,000 each but if we buy in quantity directly from the manufacturer we hope to get the price significantly reduced.

Your gifts and prayers, and your willingness to contact others with this urgent and immediate need is vital. Clear Blue is a very lean operation, all . The gifts going directly to the needs, Please help us keep a steady stream of money going so there is no delay in the life-giving resource.

Give Now

More information on the please visit their website at www.clearblueproject.com.

International Child Care Ministries Update

  -March 8th, 2010 @ 2:29 pm

(ICCM) Director Linda Adams has just returned from her second post- trip to . She learned that children whose sponsor numbers begin with a 6 or 7 (schools away from ) have been attending school since February 1. School directors report many “refugees” from are attending their schools for now. Only the earthquake zone is still waiting for schools to open on April 5.

Progress:

  • Hundreds of water filters have been assembled and put in use; 1,000 more are being sent this week.
  • A shipping container with 270,000 fortified rice meals has arrived; distribution will begin this week.
  • ICCM staff and teachers are receiving emergency aid.
  • Kids clubs are providing activities, exercise and nutrition for children in many school yards.
  • A team of three structural engineers has assessed the damaged buildings and is making recommendations.
  • American/Haitian work teams have repaired three churches/schools, with more underway each week.
  • Haitian workers are demolishing structures that need to be torn down.
  • Hundreds of tents are being sent.
  • Some soccer balls, volley balls and jump ropes have been given out.
  • School directors have received January and February support and gifts from ICCM along with sponsors’ letters to children.

Note to sponsors of Haitian children: Only Haitian children with sponsor numbers beginning with “HA5…” are among children living within the quake-affected area. If we learn that a sponsored child has perished or was seriously injured in the earthquake, we will contact their sponsor directly. Please continue to support your sponsored child unless you hear directly from us.

Haiti – Update from Dr. Delia Nuesch-Olver

  -March 5th, 2010 @ 8:16 am

Days after the January 12 devastated , I met with the Haitian superintendents to determine the priorities for response. A steering committee of six Haitian pastors and one North American missionary was empowered to manage the response according to these priorities.

Of course, the Haitian leaders understood that by identifying these priorities there were other important things they would have to trust God to accomplish through other means. They have demonstrated great maturity by maintaining focus on the priorities despite the criticism of well-meaning people who think they should try to do everything.

Partnerships are being developed with other agencies so that Free Methodist relief funds are being leveraged to go farther. Resources are being used to help people help themselves and help others. With the relief funds you have generously contributed:

  • Thousands have been vaccinated against typhoid and tetanus.
  • Thousand of food kits have been distributed.
  • Children’s clubs been started to assist with trauma counseling.
  • Structural inspections have been conducted on schools, churches and homes.
  • Haitian people have been hired to demolish damaged buildings.
  • Grants have been made available for pastors and teachers to build temporary homes before the rainy season.
  • Medical relief for victims of the earthquake has been provided at .

All of these things have been delivered at a grass roots level – along with pastoral care. People have experienced healing and spiritual encouragement even though they are psychologically battered by the memories of the terror. Please continue to pray for the many people living in primitive conditions – including Free Methodist pastors and other leaders who are working tirelessly to minister to others.

Progress Report From the Field

  -January 29th, 2010 @ 3:25 pm

, Area Director of Latin America, and , Director of Mobilization, report what is happening to the Haitian Church just 10 days after being devastated by the .  Check out what they are doing to help and find out the ways you can help your brothers and sisters in Christ.

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Port-au-Prince Report #5

  -January 27th, 2010 @ 9:33 am

Tuesday evening, January 26, 2010
Report #5
Reported by John Hay, , ICCM Director of Advancement

Haitian Response Team #2 concluded its mission on Monday and returned to Santo Domingo, , on Tuesday to brief Team #3. Team #3 makes the seven-hour drive to Port-au-Prince on Wednesday, January 27, with more relief supplies, a well-drilling team, logistics experts and (ICCM) leaders.

The Tuesday evening briefing between the two teams yielded a sobering assessment of conditions in Port-au-Prince. “What you see on TV is not true; it is much worse,” one team member said. Another reflected: “It is so overwhelming, you cannot put words to it.” The team described people living in tent villages on every available open space, calling out for water and food, and afraid to go inside buildings and homes that are still standing.

They also described heroic efforts of rescue and people sharing with each other the food and water they are able to access. An informal economy is beginning to supply essential needs even as the formal economy of the city struggles to come back online. “The people of Port-au-Prince are still in shock,” one team member declared.

Structural engineer inspected ten ICCM schools, along with churches and homes, with the assistance of Haitian ICCM and church leaders. Many schools and FM church facilities will need to be rebuilt in the months and years ahead. The task ahead is immense, but the faith of many in the Haitian Free Methodist Church is strong.

Response Team #2 was also able to restore electricity to the ICCM office so it can serve as a center for helping schools across the country resume classes as soon as feasible.

Team #3 will begin its service on Wednesday, January 27. The team includes well-drillers and . They will attempt to find water that will be a life-giving resource for many. Two team members will focus on logistics for relief and recovery teams going to over the next several months. ICCM Director Linda Adams and ICCM I will work with the Haitian ICCM staff, visiting schools, finding ICCM-sponsored children, and distributing supplies.

VISA Teams Update

  -January 26th, 2010 @ 8:20 am

A medical team left Sat., Jan. 23, for . They have based their ministry out of . , former missionary to Haiti, is coordinating this effort.

A consultant team of professionals will be going into on Wed., Jan. 27. Departure dates from Haiti will vary depending on their tasks. Team members include , newly-appointed missionary to Haiti; and , of ; , retired Army Special Forces; and and who will be drilling wells under the auspices of the military.

Spring Arbor FMC, MI, is sending a team of 13 to assist with the relief efforts in Haiti, Jan. 31 to Feb. 14. Team leaders are and .

Additional information about VISA teams including how you can participate can be found at http://go.fmwm.org/go/haiti/haiti.php

Sunday Morning Service in Haiti

  -January 25th, 2010 @ 11:31 am


Reported by on behalf of the second response team
Sunday, January 24, 2010

Standing in rubble Sunday morning, I had the honor of preaching at one of our churches. The church and school buildings were unsafe so we met under a tarp in the school’s patio. Surrounded by unbelievable pain and destruction and odor and bugs and thirst and hunger, it was very moving to join with our Haitian sisters and brothers in singing, “For I know whom I have believed, and I am persuaded that he is able …”

We attempted to bring words of comfort and hope and arranged to have water delivered. A team from the will continue to deliver water and food to people from the church and neighborhood we visited for the foreseeable future.

Some reflections from members of the team after visiting downtown Port-au-Prince this afternoon:

Flattened … It looked like a nuclear bomb had gone off … Total, breathtaking destruction beyond any kind of description. Overwhelming … People burned, still alive. Sorrow …Visible decaying bodies. Smell … Hard to process the suffering. And finally: “The pictures you’ve seen in TV are not true; it is much worse.”

There was an aftershock this afternoon. We fear unstable buildings may no longer be standing.
Alice Judy had asked her husband, Larry, (one of our team members) to find out whether their friend Bill was alive. Larry asked around to anyone he thought might know. No one had heard from Bill since the , and Larry was increasingly concerned. Today as we returned from church Larry was sitting in the back of an open pick-up truck. Suddenly, Larry heard his name called out and saw his friend Bill waving at him animatedly. Bill and Larry hope to connect again tomorrow. In the midst of so much sadness, devastation and masses of people in this capital city, this felt like a wonderful moment to all of us.

On Monday the team will divide in three. We will start work again at 6 a.m. will continue doing building inspections. and I will meet for a third strategy meeting with the Haitian leaders, after which I will visit schools and pastors with . Meanwhile Dale will fix generators to make it possible for the ICCM central office to start functioning again.

Be wise in your giving toward . We have seen people from international organizations jumping out of cars for a quick photo shoot, and then speeding away with their media material. I recommend the Bishops Famine and Relief Fund and the Help Haiti Heal fund.

Thank you for your prayers for Haiti and the Haitian people.

Update from Team A

  -January 25th, 2010 @ 7:51 am

Today we went to Church in a courtyard under a tarp in the middle of a slum. The people packed in to hear the message sing and pray. One small boy no more than 5 came forward to ask for prayer he was on the edge of tears as he approached the pastor when the pastor picked him up he broke into tears he sobbed not like a boy who can’t find his favorite toy but like a man who lost the love of his life. We then drove back through downtown it was only worse that I remember it from a few days ago. The shock of it all had worn off and scope of the devastation was much more apparent to me. Later we went back to the building where I had seen a failed rescue attempt last week and noticed that the bodies exposed in the rubble were still there. I have started to wonder what is next I know this is already fading in the hearts and minds of people around the world. How can we think longer term of how to help rebuild. This is often the case after disasters like Katrina, the Tsunami, the in China we have our moment then move on to the next thing. Sporting events, Political maneuverings, relationship issues, school worries, and job deadlines push people concerns further from the center of our lives and these flash fires of concern fade away. I see here that life is fragile it can be taken away in a moment we need to seize the moment to the greatest good we can and hold close those who we care about the most pushing aside petty things and change take the first steps to change the world now.

New Haiti Videos

  -January 22nd, 2010 @ 7:47 am

Church

National news coverage has reported what is happening in Haiti as a result of the Jan. 12 . On a more personal note, Director of Multimedia has been to Haiti to film the impact of this disaster on the Church. The people are hurting. They are suffering. There is action we can take.

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View the Chinese Version of this Video

Haiti Missionaries

On  Tues., Jan. 12, 2010, the FMC lost three missionaries in the earthquake that hit Haiti. Jeanne  Acheson- Munos, and were doing what they loved, working alongside their brothers and sisters in Haiti. Look at what is happening in Haiti and what we can do to help make their vision for Haiti a reality – Haiti for Christ.

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