Disaster and Mission Staff Offer Support After Fire in South Sudan Village

Photo by Athanasus Ungang
A tarp provided by Brethren Disaster Ministries helps cover a home damaged by fire in the village of Lafon, South Sudan.

Staff of Brethren Disaster Ministries and Global Mission and Service have given support to South Sudanese villagers affected by a recent fire, through a grant from the denomination’s Emergency Disaster Fund (EDF). Other recent disaster relief grants have gone to Church World Service work at a refugee camp in Thailand, and areas of southern states in the US affected by recent storms.

The allocation of $6,800 for the village of Lafon in South Sudan provided emergency shelter and tools for the people affected. The fire in January destroyed 108 homes, as well as personal belongings, and stored food. The Brethren grant purchased tarps, bags of food, and machetes and axes for the affected families–tools they needed to rebuild, and emergency shelter for the rainy season.

A Church of the Brethren mission worker in South Sudan–Athanasus Ungang–with the help of Brethren Volunteer Service worker Jocelyn Snyder, facilitated the purchase and delivery of the supplies.

Photo by Athanasus Ungang
The new relief vehicle will help with efforts such as this delivery of relief goods to villagers in South Sudan.

The grant of $3,500 to the Ban Mae Surin Refugee Camp in Thailand follows a fire at the camp that killed 36 people, injured 200 more, and destroyed more than 400 houses, leaving 2,300 people homeless. The Brethren funds support the response of Church World Service (CWS) in building emergency shelters and providing 10 days of emergency food. A longer term response will include reconstruction of homes, community buildings, and food warehouses.

The amount of $2,000 given to CWS responds to an appeal following several severe storm systems that swept across the southern US during the first few months of 2013, causing significant damage in communities in five states. The CWS response includes distribution of hygiene kits and clean-up buckets, as well as support for long-term recovery committees in the affected communities.

For more about the Emergency Disaster Fund go to www.brethren.org/edf .