We recently had Hurricane Matthew come through Haiti and the Southeastern part of the United States. Those in Haiti were affected greatly! Those that we have spoken to in the USA were affected only by minor damage to structures.
When we asked Pastor Andrew Samuels of the Miami SDB Church about his contacts in Haiti, this was his reply,
“Thankfully, our people in Haiti were not in the areas most severely affected by the storm. However, some of our SDB brethren did suffer damage to their homes. I have not yet been able to determine a good sense of how much damage has been experienced, how many families have been affected by property damage, and the cost involved in providing restoration and repair. In addition to those damages however, they have expressed the urgent need for food and clothing. From our position here in Miami, right now we are only able to take on an effort to provide some food for them. We do that through a company here in Florida where we pay them some money, and they deliver the food directly to the address we designate in Haiti. That way, we don’t have to deal with purchasing or shipping the food, and on their end, they don’t have to deal with picking it up somewhere. To give you an idea of the type of food we typically send:
Rice – 110 pounds – $56.00
Rice – 55 pounds – $28.00
Beans – 100 pounds – $85.00
Beans -50 pounds – $42.00
Sugar – 110 pounds – $65.00
Sugar – 55 pounds – $35.00
Sardines (case of 48 tins) – $40.00
Flour – 110 pounds – $41.00
Flour – 55 pounds – $24.00
There are other items like cooking oil, spaghetti, macaroni, tin salmon, and corn.
For the last five or so years we have been using this means to send food to our brethren there once or twice for the year. When the food is sent, Pastor Jean Lucas Julien, the Pastor there, announces a distribution day, they re-package the food into bags of 2 pounds or so, and give to each family, not only in the church, but in the community.
Usually when we pay for the food here, it gets to them the next day. So, it is a very easy process, and that’s how we encourage people to support our brethren in Haiti; by donating cash to contribute to sending the food this way. The Miami Church will be sending food next week, and as needed as funds are available in the near future. Any amount is helpful, and you are sure it will go to those who really need it.
And it also serves as an Outreach of the Church to the community.”
In addition to disaster relief, there is relief also underway in Syria. Pastor Gabe Bejjani of the Riverside, California SDB Church has been working with the refugees. He recently wrote:
“The area between Aleppo and the coast has large refugee populations that are Christians who escaped for their lives with what they could carry. They are Chaldean and Assyrian Christians. Their dire need is for Diesel fuel for heating and cooking. It costs about $5.00 per month to provide a family with this fuel. I will purchase the fuel in Syria and the contacts in Syria will help me distribute it to these Christian families.
In Lebanon, I have already arranged with our two fellowships to purchase food and distribute at two schools in Beirut and two refugee camps in Sidon and Tyre. The contacts in Beirut with the schools are two of my former students who are principals of the schools and will provide the human resources needed for the purchase and distribution of the food packages. In Tyre, a brother in Christ will be going with me to help as many needy families as my funds permit.”
The Seventh Day Baptist standing committee on Christian Social Action and Disaster Relief has committed to help fund these two worthy causes. Please consider giving to one or more of the food needs in Haiti –or- supporting a families fuel needs for a year in Syria. If you would like to partner with us in helping those in needs, please send your donation to:
Seventh Day Baptist Conference
P.O. Box 1678
Janesville, WI 53547-1678
Please put on the memo line on your check; CSA&DR
To give online, go to > www.easytithe.com/sdb