LEARNING TOUR '09
Join us this sunday @ 10:30.
.: Stories from The Frontlines :::.
WHEN GOD CALLS AND GUIDES YOU
The following story from Leigh and Lois Steckley reflects a mission project ongoing in the slums of Eastleigh, Nairobi, Kenya.
.: Noteworthy :::.
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
Mennite Central Committee Ontario Update from Rick Cober-Bauman
"Yes, our assistance can reach the devastated regions of Burma and make a real difference."
We feel like you in the churches have awaited this word from us. And last week, after confirming working arrangements with four partners inside Burma, we knew we were ready to ask for your strong and generous support. We have raised our initial plan to a $500 000.00 response!
We do not have to be blocked by visa issues at the Burmese border - our partners' staff are already inside the country. We do not have to be hampered by borders closed to rice, shelter materials, and medical supplies - all these are available inside Burma, and can be purchased and delivered to hard hit regions.
Last week I met with the small, local Burmese refugee community in Kitchener, and they expressed their thanks to the Mennonite Central Committee community for our response to their homeland. Our invitation to you our churches now is to show the same generosity to Burma as you have shown in times past when called upon to respond to our suffering brothers and sisters.
Our thanks to you now as you consider your capacity to respond.
Perhaps you have other questions. Here are several we have heard:
Is The Mennonite Central Committee also responding to communities harmed by the earthquake in China?
MCC has a long history in China. We want to honour that history and the scale of the earthquake disaster, and we have planned a modest initial response of $20 000.00. We believe the Chinese capacity to respond, as well as its openness to receive international assistance leads Mennonite Central Committee to an overall stronger focus on Myanmar [Burma].
Is the government of Canada [through CIDA, the Canadian International Development Agency] matching MCC's contributions for China or Myanmar [Burma]?
At this point there are no plans for CIDA to match Mennonite Central Committee contributions.
We thought Mennonite Central Committee was more than a disaster response agency. Why such a large appeal for Myanmar [Burma]?
Some of our best work in response to the 2004 Tsunami occurred 12-18 months after the disaster. This long term reconstruction and development work was made possible in part through the generous early contributions of donors. We are committed to being present in Myanmar [Burma] through partners, well after the disaster, contributing to the long term health of communities.
.: Information :::.
Myanmar/Burma Disaster Relief
MCC assistance is reaching devastated regions of Myanmar [Burma] and is urgently requesting your support for relief and recovery work happening through four partner organizations on the ground.
A local relief and development organization called Metta is providing rice, medicine and other emergency items to 68,000 people (many of them orphans) gathered in camps; Hope International is distributing medical treatment through mobile health teams and have already treated 2,000 people; Church World Service is providing water containers and purification equipment in 1,000 locations, and as of May 13 had reached 13 villages with supplies purchased in Northwestern Myanmar. International Development Enterprise is distributing water containers, water pumps and plastic sheeting.
These are all organizations that are on the ground, in Myanmar [Burma] thus avoidinig aid worker visa issues, as well as emergency aid border-crossing issues.
MCC Ontario is committed to raising $125,000 and expects to be involved in Myanmar for a number of years. As long term recovery work begins your donations are needed. Donations can be sent to MCC Ontario by mail, or made in person at 50 Kent Ave., Kitchener, ON N2G 3R1 and should be designated "Myanmar (Burma) relief and recovery" or may also be made online at mcc.org/donate, or by calling the MCC Ontario office at 519-745-8458 (1-800-313-6226).
MCC is committed to a $20 000.00 response to earthquake victims in the Chengdu region. Our partners include The Amity Foundation and local churches, with a focus on emergency shelter needs.
.: Get Involved :::.
Learning Tour to Haiti
Learning Tour To Haiti! In January of 2009, Leigh and Lois Steckley will be leading a Learning (Study) Tour to Haiti. A team of 4 to 8 adults( over the age of 18) will be travelling to Haiti for 7-10 days. "Learning and experiencing poverty at the grassroots level. Listening to Haitians and their stories. Living and eating with a Haitian family.(Called a Homestay). Learning some Creole, the language of communication." The cost of the trip will be between $1500 and $2000. This trip will be a life changing experience.
If you are interested in finding out more, contact Leigh or Lois at 519-662-2066.
Are you 16-19 and looking for an opportunity to be challenged this summer? Consider applying for Enlace, a 5-week service and learning program in Guatemala. MCCO is also seeking a responsible adult to provide leadership.
Information can be found online at MCC.org
.: Sites of Interest :::.
Hungry Planet: A Resource for All Ages
I had 10 minutes to fill with a group of energetic preschoolers at a food seminar. Fortunately, I had the Resource Centre's copy of the book Hungry Planet. The children were fascinated to flip through the full colour pictures of families around the world surrounded by the groceries they consume in a typical week. Now Hungry Planet is available to borrow from the Resource Centre as a kit, including a dozen posters, Powerpoint presentation, information and handouts. Although geared to grades 7-12, it can be adapted for all ages - even adults!
Mennonite & BIC Resource Centre
Make Poverty History
A child dies every 3 seconds as a result of extreme poverty. Poverty is not inevitable. If we have the will to act - we can make povery history.
The Micah Challenge
Why Micah? "To do justice , and to love kindness and to walk humbly with your God." Micah 6:8
The Mennonite Central Committee - MCC Haiti
The MCC promotes human rights, provides food and basic supplies and sponsors reforestation and environmental education in Haiti. Check it out!
The Gathering - All rights reserved