Emergency Disaster Fund supports aid for Haitians affected by Hurricane Matthew

Church of the Brethren Newsline
January 20, 2017

Brethren Disaster Ministries has directed a grant of $50,000 from the Church of the Brethren’s Emergency Disaster Fund (EDF) to support the next phase of response to devastation in Haiti caused by Hurricane Matthew. The storm hit the island on Oct. 4, 2016, as a powerful category 4 hurricane, causing widespread damage and considerable losses, and up to 1,600 deaths.

In an effort to aid those affected by Hurricane Matthew in Haiti, 31 families have received goats to replace some of their losses. The goat distribution was carried out with help from Brethren Disaster Ministries and l’Eglise des Freres d’Haiti (Church of the Brethren in Haiti), reported Jeff Boshart of the Global Food Initiative (GFI). “Each goat received a check up, deworming medicine, and vaccinations by a veterinarian, Paul Devilien, who used to work for CARE. The families received training in proper care of their new animals before taking their goats home. Dr. Paul worked with a GFI project in Bombardopolis with an Haitian organization called Cepaeb Bombardopolis Haiti. Many school children received training in animal care and then received their own goats. This was a ‘passing on the gift’ project with older students giving offspring from their goats to younger students.”

The United Nations has reported that 2.1 million Haitians were affected with 1.4 million needing humanitarian assistance and 750,000 needing longer term assistance. Those who have been affected have experienced significant losses of crops, damage to agricultural land, and losses of livestock.

An initial grant from the EDF provided emergency food, hygiene supplies, and clothing for children to 15 communities impacted by Hurricane Matthew. In a planning session with the Haitian Church of the Brethren, l’Eglise des Freres d’Haiti, in November, Brethren Disaster Ministries staff created a comprehensive plan for a joint long-term recovery program to be carried out between BDM and the Haitian church. Ten Haitian church leaders will lead the response and recovery activities, which will focus on long-term recovery programing and medical support for disaster survivors.

Funds from this allocation will support medical clinics, animal distributions, and seed distributions.

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

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