St. James gathers and prepares donations for the Mission-in-Motion at annual conference during the month of May. This includes our Health Kits and Cleaning Buckets.
Any questions regarding the Mission-in-Motion event please contact Vicki Cullar or Shirley Olson.
The United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) was created by the Methodist Church in 1940 in response to refugee needs arising from World War II. What began as a temporary relief program became a permanent part of the United Methodist Church in 1972. Renamed the United Methodist Committee on Relief, since that time it has remained a unit of the General Board of Global Ministries.
Today, UMCOR supports work in more than 80 countrie (including the U.S.), with a direct presence through UMCOR NGO in nine of those countries. UMCOR’s work includes programs and projects in disaster responses, health, sustainable agriculture, food security, relief supplies, and more.
UMCOR helps annual conferences…
- Prepare for disasters. UMCOR works cooperatively with annual conferences in the event of an emergency and to prepare for emergencies. We work through the disaster response coordinator to provide training in all aspects of disaster response.
- Respond to disasters. UMCOR always responds to emergencies at the invitation of and through the affected Annual Conference. In addition to providing training. UMCOR offers technical assistance and support through a highly trained network of staff, consultants, and experienced volunteers to help annual conferences respond to all phases of a disaster.
- Recover from disasters. UMCOR can send emergency grants immediately to fund start-up relief activities. UMCOR also supports long-term recovery ministries through the provision of grants, planning, technical assistance, and training, and helps coordinate volunteers.
The Health Kits we pack will join with other Relief Kits from all over the conference, and be sent to UMCOR. UMCOR distributes Health Kits to people around the world who are in need of basic tools to maintain health.
Health Kits provide basic necessities to people who have been forced to leave their homes because of human conflict or natural disaster. Health Kits are also used as learning tools in personal hygiene, literacy, nutrition and cooking classes.
All emergency kits are carefully planned to make them usable in the greatest number of situations. Since strict rules often govern product entry into international countries, it is important that kits contain only the request items, nothing more.
Health Kits in Action
UMCOR provides humanitarian relief and disaster response in the United States and internationally. The organization’s efforts are targeted in places where natural disasters, war, or conflict have done so much damage that communities are unable to recover on their own. While UMCOR is not a first-response organization, they stand ready to accompany communities in need over the long haul of their recovery, until they are well on their way to establishing a “new normal” after a crisis. in Fall 2015 UMCOR was there after the devastating floods in South Carolina. Health Kits were distributed to many residents displaced by the flooding.
UMCOR’s work reaches people in more than 80 countries, including the United States. While UMCOR cooperates with other aid organizations to extend their reach, their most important partners are the people served. UMCOR provided not only temporary relief, but long-term education, training and support.
There is a unique school in Armenia which is providing special needs children the love, support, and everyday care they need to help them grow and live life to their fullest. The Special School #3 provides a positive learning environment for 86 students from Gyumri and nearby villages who live with different levels of communications disorders. The school is located in district of Gyumri City. Most of the students have only one parent. In most cases, the parents themselves experience health problems and are not employed. Some parents take on seasonal work in nearby villages where they travel by foot and forego transportation costs. While the parents go to work, the school staff provides care for each child. “All staff members are very attentive to each child who really crave parental love,” said Mr. Tigran Gulyan, the school’s director. He offered the example of Tatevik (9 years-old), and Sedrak (14 years-old), who are brother and sister. They are both speech impaired, and experience other health and psychological conditions. Their parents passed away in an accident and are currently under the care of their 82-year-old grandfather. The school provided them with much-needed clothing, education, psychological support, and nutritious food, as they continued to live in poor and unsanitary housing conditions. In addition, supplies like UMCOR Health Kits help improve hygiene practices. Soap, towels, toothbrushes, and combs make them really happy. School kits regularly delivered by UMCOR, provide useful tools and the children enjoy using them.
These are but two examples of how Health Kits are used around the world. From tornadoes in Cisco, Texas, and sever floods in Wimberley, Texas, to responding to the many child migrants fleeing war-torn regions such as Syria, UMCOR is there. Soon, a Health Kit we assemble may reach the hands of someone in a desperate situation, and bring hope.
Health Kits 2016
This year we packed 60 Health Kits for UMCOR!!! Yea church!!! Enough cash donations were received, that we were able to purchase materials for 15 more kits, for a total of 75 Health Kits!! All 75 Health Kits, along with the donated toothpaste money, will be boxed up in time to be delivered to the Mission-in-Motion trailer at annual conference in Lubbock. Our donation of kits will join with those donated by other churches in our conference, to be delivered to the Sager Brown UMCOR Supply Depot in Baldwin, Louisiana.
Thank you, congregation, for your generosity and cheerful participation in the gathering of materials and packing of kits. Those kits will touch lives around the world through the work of UMCOR.
In 2016, the St. James congregation packed 12 Cleaning Buckets for UMCOR in approximately 8 minutes!! YOU ROCK, CHURCH!!! During the Cleaning Bucket campaign, you donated over $700. After purchase of the materials for the 12 buckets, St. James will still send more than $300 to UMCOR to purchase additional supplies for buckets there.
Any time you would like to make a donation to UMCOR, remember that UMCOR spends 100% of designated donations on the projects that donors specify. When UMCOR donors give their time, money, and supplies, they join UMCOR as the hands and feet of Christ. I feel certain that the Cleaning Buckets you packed and cash you donated will be a blessing to people whose homes and lives have been so disrupted by flooding from fall storms. A big thanks from the Outreach Committee goes to all of you who donated so generously and helped pack the buckets!
A special thanks goes to Shirley and Robert Olson for helping coordinate the project, and to John Westman who will deliver the packed buckets to the UMCOR depot in Louisiana.