Disaster Relief

Dear Friends,

At such a time as this, we are calling on fellow Salvationists to join in prayer for the people of Myanmar and China. While we long to offer more practical support, our family in each of these countries has asked that above all we remember them in prayer.

· Pray for The Salvation Army community in both Myanmar and China as they respond to the needs of those around them despite the losses they have suffered personally

· Pray for those who have lost children, husbands, wives, parents and loved ones

· Pray for the ongoing rescue work in the rubble of buildings and structures

· Pray for those communities still isolated from emergency relief and support

· Pray for the injured that they will receive medical care quickly

“Hope is believing despite the evidence, and watching the evidence change.” Jim Wallis, founder of Sojourners God is faithful and bends His ear to the cries of His children.

Donations to either of these disaster sites can be made at 1-800-SAL-ARMY, http://www.salvationarmy.ca/ or by mail. Please see Kerry (458-1937) if you would like more details on donating.

IHQ website - MAJOR Mike Caffull, The Salvation Army's International Emergency Services Field Operations Officer, has been granted a visa for entry into Myanmar and is en route to help and advise the local teams already working there. Despite the difficulties of getting assistance into Myanmar, The Salvation Army's in-country personnel have been working hard to give help and support to victims of the Cyclone Nargis, responding within hours of the cyclone.

Commissioner David Bringans, leader of The Salvation Army in Singapore, Malaysia and Myanmar, reports by telephone: 'Our people in Myanmar have been working tirelessly since the cyclone hit their country. There are four teams of people distributing aid in and around Yangon (Rangoon) and among the small, badly-damaged townships surrounding the city. Safe water, food and shelter equipment have been their priority and this work continues.'

The widely-reported difficulties of getting visas for aid workers has hampered potential further assistance by The Salvation Army from outside Myanmar. Even the territorial leaders, based in Singapore, have been unable to secure visas to visit and support their teams in Myanmar.
When Major Caffull reaches Myanmar, an assessment will be conducted in order to plan further assistance in the immediate and longer term. The most pressing task will be to assess the extent to which the local teams are able to carry out necessary emergency response and to work with them in deciding the most appropriate and needed action in the coming days.

Discussions have already taken place with other major humanitarian groups interested in partnering with The Salvation Army. With most groups finding difficulty in getting access to Myanmar, some organisations are grateful to be able to make the most of The Salvation Army's infrastructure and influence in the country.

Major Caffull says: 'Despite the difficulties being encountered regarding access and supplies, I am hoping that my visit to Myanmar will assist the teams already working there and help the international Salvation Army plan for the next phase of recovery for the people so badly affected by this disaster.'