November 10, 2013—In the wake of Typhoon Haiyan, the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) is actively mobilizing resources to respond to this latest and largest in a series of disasters to hit the Philippines over the past twelve months.
Although an accurate casualty toll is yet to be determined, it is clear that the destruction and disruption of lives due to Typhoon Haiyan, known locally as Yolanda, is massive. Haiyan crashed into the Philippines on Friday, November 8.
UMCOR Assistant General Secretary for International Disaster Response Rev. Jack Amick and UMCOR Philippines Head of Mission Ciony Eduarte worked together to develop an appropriate and strategic response. UMCOR is making plans to fill the gaps in the disaster-relief delivery network and go where the need is greatest. “Our goal,” said Eduarte “will be to reach the yet unreached with supplies that meet their basic needs.”
The initial response from UMCOR will involve the distribution of food and water purification tablets. UMCOR expects to provide relief services to at least 1,000 families. In the coming weeks, UMCOR will begin to assess the viability of longer-term rehabilitation projects.
“This was an extremely destructive storm,” noted Amick, “and UMCOR is well-positioned through its office in the Philippines to play a significant role in long-term recovery efforts. “
The General Board of Global Ministries, of which UMCOR is a part, has confirmed that all of its missionaries in the Philippines are safe.
UMCOR Deputy General Secretary Rev. Denise Honeycutt spoke by telephone this morning with the three bishops of the Philippines, who are participating in the Council of Bishops meeting in Junaluska, North Carolina.
She assured the bishops of continuing prayers while resources are mobilized to assist those impacted by the storm. “UMCOR will be with you as you care for those in your country who have suffered so much,” Honeycutt told them in a written follow-up to the conversation.
Please continue to be in prayer for the first-responders and all who might have lost loved ones.
Mississippi United Methodists, here are three ways to give:
1. Write a check with "Typhoon Haiyan" in the memo line and mail to:
Mississippi Annual Conference
320-A Briarwood Drive
Jackson, MS 39206
2. Gifts may be included with your apportioned mission shares through line 62. Make sure to include the advance number, 982450.
3. Donations can also be received online through www.umcmission.org.