Tuesday, May 30, 2006

One Great Hour Of Sharing To Provide $25, 000 In Initial Relief Assistance To Victims Of Yog

From "Jayne, Andy" <Ajayne@ABC-USA.org>Date Tue, 30 May 2006 20:43:53 -0400

The World Relief Office of the American Baptist Churches USA has released a grant of $25,000 for immediate relief to victims of the recent Yogyakarta earthquake on the Indonesian island of Java.

The death toll from the earthquake, which struck Indonesia on Saturday, May 27, 2006, now stands at 5,137 as recently quoted by officials. Church World Service Indonesia reports that some 1,700 persons are injured and more than 13,000 houses are damaged. The earthquake measured at 6.3 in magnitude on the Richter Scale.

In all, more than 200,000 people are homeless according to government reports; many of them in and near the ancient city of Yogyakarta.

Baptist World Aid (BWAid), the Union of Indonesian Baptist Churches, and Church World Service responded immediately to the needs of the hundreds of thousands of victims of this most recent tragedy. One Great Hour of Sharing funds will assist the relief efforts of all three of these relief agencies.

BWAid and Hungarian Baptist Aid (HBAid) immediately sent two "Rescue 24" teams in the affected area. Rescue 24 immediately offered search and rescue, medical, and mass feeding teams to local authorities who accepted the medical assistance. One team is working in the Bethesda Hospital in Yogyakarta and the other in Bantul and surrounding areas. The teams will provide medical assistance and also help to assess needs and possible ways for Baptists to be involved in later stages of humanitarian relief and rehabilitation.

One of the teams sent was from Nias Island, Indonesia where they had been carrying out post tsunami work with the Convention of Indonesian Baptist Churches. An Indonesian doctor from the Convention of Indonesian Baptist Churches traveled with them, arriving in the area on Sunday evening. The other team was dispatched by HBAid from Budapest, Hungary late Saturday, arriving in Indonesia on Sunday. The medical team, consisting of 6 doctors, paramedics, and half a metric ton of equipment, were joined by two Singaporean paramedics and have been working together with local Indonesian Baptists.

Leaders within the Union of Baptist Churches of Indonesia have been coordinating the response and have already distributed emergency tents, meal packs, and food. In addition, Anugrah Baptist Church is being set up as an operation center, and Prambanan Baptist Church as a medical clinic.

Baptist groups have gained relief experience in work they have done following the December 2004 Tsunami. They have also been assisting those who have recently been evacuated from the path of the Merapi volcano.

With local staff throughout Indonesia, Church World Service responded almost immediately following the earthquake, sending an initial supply of nearly 3,000 bottles of water and blankets to Bethesda Hospital in Yogyakarta, which is receiving many of the injured. Church World Service has distributed water and food rations to 500 households in four sub-districts of Bantul: Kretek, Parangtritis, Tambang Dipuro, and Pundong. Two tons of family tents, Health Kits, and CWS Blankets were sent yesterday, and 11 more tons of emergency supplies will follow later this week.

Church World Service is projecting that their relief work will continue in this area for at least one year.

"The people of Indonesia have suffered greatly from recent natural disasters," said World Relief Officer, Lisa Rothenberger. "Within the past 18 months, they have been victims of the tsunami, the eruption of the Mount Merapi volcano, and now this devastating earthquake. There is little doubt that relief will be needed for at least the next twelve months. Even as we pray for the victims of this earthquake, please also pray for the relief workers, as many have worked tirelessly on relief and rehabilitation activities since the tsunami of December 2004."

American Baptists wishing to support Indonesian earthquake relief efforts can do so through their church's monthly report of mission support, designating contributions "OGHS-Indonesian Earthquake." For online contributions, go to the Give Now option available on either www.abc-usa.org or www.abcusamissions.org.

Andrew C. Jayne American Baptist Churches, USA Mission Resource Development http://www.abc-usa.org/


Matt Real said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Matt Real said...

Our 2 Cents

This is pitiful, but I guess its the state of our denomination. We seem to be giving oursleves kudos that a denomination that claims 1.4 million members can scrape up $25,000 for a disaster. Thats less than 2 cents per capita. This would be a fabulous total for a church to send, or even a good one for an association. But it appears we as a denomination have fallen on hard times.