ADRA Stories Stories from ADRA &quot;Selling Stories&quot;: Behind the Scenes with Sanjay <p style="font-weight: bold; color: #333366;">by Sanjay Thomas</p> <p>Pim is not happy to see her father.&nbsp; The 14-year-old nervously avoids eye contact and her small hands flit about like broken-winged birds.&nbsp; She shifts her weight from one leg to the other, bites her lip, and blows at a strand of hair falling across her forehead.&nbsp; It falls anyway and hides one of her darkly guarded eyes.&nbsp; </p> <p><img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/THAILAND_14-0113.jpg" border="0" alt="THAILAND 14-0113.JPG" width="600" height="400" />&nbsp;</p> <p class="photocaption">Pim and her father show us around their village during our visit.&nbsp;</p> <p>For a girl returning to her home and family, she acts less like a reunited child than a prisoner awaiting judgment.&nbsp; In a sense, that&rsquo;s exactly what she is.</p> <p>&ldquo;He says he can&rsquo;t really take her on right now,&rdquo; Joy translates.</p> <p>This is good news.&nbsp; It means Pim can return to the shelter where she has lived for seven years&mdash;where her friends, her puppies, her chickens, and her guitar lessons are waiting to welcome her back.&nbsp; It is good news, but it is packaged in the kind of sadness that no child deserves.&nbsp; Because, while she desperately wants to return to the shelter, there is undoubtedly a part of her that desperately wants her father to welcome her home.</p> <p>Perhaps better news would be that Pim no longer has to fear her own family and community.&nbsp; Perhaps the best news of all would be that the world into which Pim was born will no longer allow young girls to be reduced to sexual commodities.</p> <p>But that is not the case.&nbsp; Pim still lives on a planet where over 20 million people are currently being trafficked for commercial sex or forced labor, and so she will have to take what good she can get.</p> <p>On the return ride to the shelter, Pim slowly transitions back into the girl I met a few days prior, whose eyes shine with laughter and whose lips carry a hint of playful mischief.&nbsp; For now, the threat of being sold into slavery is behind her.&nbsp;</p> <p>As we approach Keep Girls Safe, a spacious and sprawling home tucked away in Chiang Rai, Pim presses her face to the glass and smiles.&nbsp; Several of the 30 girls who call this shelter home run out to the car and crowd around the doors.&nbsp; Pim climbs out and they tumble into the kind of embrace that only a group of happy children can create.&nbsp; Pim is back.</p> <p><img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/IMG_4336.jpg" border="0" alt="IMG_4336.JPG" width="600" height="266" /></p> <p class="photocaption">The girls at the Keep Girls Safe shelter perform a Thai cultural dance.&nbsp;</p> <p>If home is a place of family, laughter, and security, then the Keep Girls Safe shelter is the only home Pim has ever known.&nbsp; Here her heart is loved, her brain is educated, and her innocence is preserved.&nbsp; In a society where girls are often valued by the amount of money they can procure through forced labor and sexual acts, the latter is an especially rare gift to provide.</p> <p>&nbsp;<img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/THAILAND_14-0202.jpg" border="0" alt="THAILAND 14-0202.JPG" width="450" height="675" /></p> <p class="photocaption">The girls at the Keep Girls Safe Shelter and I play one evening after dinner.&nbsp;</p> <p>Keep Girls Safe honors what much of the world is unwilling or unable to do: give every little girl a safe and happy childhood.&nbsp; The ones who live here have exactly that.&nbsp; They raise fish and chickens, play musical instruments, cultivate fruits and vegetables, learn traditional dances, and snuggle with the three resident puppies.&nbsp; They also learn literacy and mathematics, among other skills, so that when they leave the shelter, they can advertise their brains instead of their bodies.</p> <p>Though the world at large may be predatory and unsafe, here it is held at bay by the clucking of chickens, the barking of puppies, and the laughter of 30 happy and protected girls.</p> Fri, 13 Feb 2015 15:35:39 GMT 2015-02-13T15:35:39Z ADRA on High Alert in Philippines for Typhoon Hagupit <p style="font-weight: bold; color: #333366;">by Natalia López-Thismón, ADRA International</p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">SILVER SPRING, MD&mdash;The Adventist Development and Relief Agency's (ADRA) emergency response team (ERT) is on high alert and has prepositioned resources as Typhoon Hagupit, locally known as Ruby, approaches the Philippines.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">While the Typhoon has lost some strength and was downgraded from Super Typhoon to Typhoon, it seems to be regaining strength. According to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical &amp; Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), the storm has maximum sustained winds of 195 kph [121 mph] near the center and gustiness of up to 230 kph [143 mph].</span></p> <p>Typhoon Hagupit is set to make landfall Saturday evening (December 6), local time, or Sunday morning over the Eastern Samar&mdash;Northern Samar area. Strong winds and storm surge up to 4 meters are expected with heavy rainfall.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">ADRA&rsquo;s ERT has prepared 2,500 shelter kits, and 5,000 tarps as well as other nonfood items for distribution as needed.</span></p> <p>&nbsp;<span style="font-size: 10pt;">"We have taken the necessary steps to ensure that our response team is prepared to respond," said Thierry Van Bignoot, ADRA&rsquo;s Director for Emergency Management Unit. "We are especially vigilant of areas that were affected by last year&rsquo;s Super Typhoon Haiyan who are still just recovering from that disaster."</span></p> <p>For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact Natalia L&oacute;pez-Thism&oacute;n, Associate Director for Communication at ADRA International at</p> Fri, 13 Feb 2015 15:14:02 GMT 2015-02-13T15:14:02Z &quot;Seeds of Hope&quot;: Behind the Scenes with Sanjay <p style="font-weight: bold; color: #333366;">by Sanjay Thomas</p> <p>There is a moment during every sunset when the world is drained of all ugliness and pain and only colors remain.&nbsp; In that ephemeral space of light and shadow, the world is beautiful.&nbsp;</p> <p>Then the colors fade, the shadows lengthen, and the moment is gone.</p> <p>In Adjumani District in northern Uganda, the contrast between pain and beauty is especially poignant.&nbsp; The horizon absorbs the blood red sun in a stirring panorama of primal splendor and the evening sky becomes a vast, cosmic easel.&nbsp;</p> <p>And under it all there is profound loss and suffering.</p> <p>When violence erupted in South Sudan, a mass exodus ensued.&nbsp; Hundreds of thousands of people, most of whom were women and children, fled only with what they could carry.&nbsp; In most cases, there was no time to carry anything more than an infant child or a handful of food and clothes.&nbsp; When these refugees reached Adjumani, the northernmost asylum in Uganda, they were homeless and destitute.</p> <p>When I arrived in Adjumani, I thought I was prepared to confront the horrific results of war.&nbsp; I was wrong.&nbsp; For example, nothing in my privileged life could have prepared me for the moment Emanuel, a teenage orphan of the conflict in South Sudan, welcomed me into his small hut.&nbsp; It wasn&rsquo;t the lack of material goods that struck me, but the lack of people.&nbsp; He was truly and utterly on his own.&nbsp; All the sadness and hunger, homesickness and boredom, despair and apathy&mdash;these were his to bear alone.</p> <p><img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/UGANDA_14-0219.jpg" border="0" alt="UGANDA 14-0219.JPG" width="600" height="400" /></p> <p class="photocaption">The film crew and I walk with Emanuel (in red) and his friend on our way to his hut.</p> <p>Photographs and films often accurately portray the scope and magnitude of conflict, but nothing makes the individual trauma of violence as clear as interacting with an orphaned survivor in their own, solitary home.&nbsp; The bare walls, dusty bed, and threadbare blanket speak of loss louder than any film ever can.</p> <p>Tragically, Emanuel is not unique in this loss.&nbsp; Everywhere there are similar stories of children struggling for survival, too often by themselves.&nbsp;</p> <p>And so it was all the more shocking when, a few days later, the ADRA film crew and I found throngs of happy children parading the streets.&nbsp; They wore bright colors and formed military formations and broke into song and dance on a whim.&nbsp; The joyful chaos was comprised in equal parts of local children and refugee children, and they mingled like schoolmates on a playground.&nbsp; In fact, thanks to the generosity of Ugandans, many of them actually are schoolmates.</p> <p>&nbsp;<img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/UGANDA_14-0318.jpg" border="0" alt="UGANDA 14-0318.JPG" width="400" height="600" /></p> <p class="photocaption">Local school children celebrate Ugandan Independence Day.</p> <p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s Independence day!&rdquo; someone shouted at us.</p> <p>And with that we were carried away in the tide of laughter and energy. Giddy hands grasped my own and I was swallowed by the voracious dance.&nbsp; Drums echoed across the camp and beat in tandem with my heart, and I felt that suffering is not absolute when there is still hope.&nbsp; I recalled something Emanuel had said the day before: &ldquo;People may forget about us, but God will never forget.&nbsp; In God, there is hope.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;<img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/UGANDA_14-0300.jpg" border="0" alt="UGANDA 14-0300.JPG" width="600" height="400" /></p> <p class="photocaption">School children prepare to march into town for Ugandan Independece Day celebrations.</p> <p>And though there is pain here, and the ugly reality of broken homes, abandoned children and poverty, there is beauty, too. Not just the temporal kind that is painted across the sky every evening, but the kind that lives in the spirit, that is born of hope, that passes from parent to child and seeps into the fabric of the community, into the fabric of the world.</p> <p><img style="font-size: 10pt;" src="../images/content/pagebuilder/UGANDA_14-0368.jpg" border="0" alt="UGANDA 14-0368.JPG" width="600" height="400" /></p> <p class="photocaption">The crew and I film and learn more about the South Sudanese refugee families in Uganda.&nbsp;</p> Tue, 10 Feb 2015 23:05:30 GMT 2015-02-10T23:05:30Z &quot;No One Left&quot;: Behind the Scenes with Sanjay <p style="font-weight: bold; color: #333366;">by Sanjay Thomas</p> <p>The festival seems like any other&mdash;clowns, balloons, painted faces and broad smiles.&nbsp; There is music and dancing.&nbsp; There are games and activities.&nbsp; There are mothers and children.<span style="font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;"><img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/Moldova_SPB.jpg" border="0" alt="Moldova SPB.jpg" width="400" height="600" /></span></p> <p class="photocaption"><span style="font-size: 8pt;">This little boy is excited to see his mother in prison. Clowns and balloons made the day extra special for him.&nbsp;</span></p> <p>Also, there are guards with guns.&nbsp; Real guards.&nbsp; Real guns.</p> <p>This festival, which seems like any other, has one significant difference: it is held within the walls of a women&rsquo;s prison.&nbsp;<span style="font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p>When the Soviet Union collapsed, the stability of Moldova toppled with it, causing the economy to fall and unemployment and crime to rise.&nbsp; Through it all, the children suffered most.&nbsp; Many kids, some no more than toddlers, were abandoned.&nbsp; They had to struggle for survival in any way possible, often living in the streets and sleeping in alleys.<span style="font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p><img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/IMG_2441.jpg" border="0" alt="IMG_2441.JPG" width="600" height="400" /></p> <p class="photocaption"><span style="font-size: 8pt;">Children at the Rainbow of Hope Children's Center pose with the crew after shooting for "A Closer Walk"</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">For these children, ADRA provides a home full of love, safety, and three balanced meals every day.&nbsp; But for the countless others whose mothers are incarcerated, a home isn&rsquo;t always enough.&nbsp; Many of these little ones even have relatives who care for them, or friends of the family who adopt them as their own, but growing up without a mother&rsquo;s love and affection is a difficult and lonely loss of one&rsquo;s childhood.</span><span style="font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p>And so ADRA organized a festival, because no child should have to hug their mother in a drab visitation room.&nbsp; A few guards and a gaggle of delighted volunteers later, and the festival is actually a festival, a real fun-and-games kind of festival.&nbsp; </p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">It&rsquo;s time.&nbsp; Load the bus, cue the music.&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;"><img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/IMG_2703.jpg" border="0" alt="IMG_2703.JPG" width="600" height="400" /><br /></span></p> <p class="photocaption"><span style="font-size: 8pt;">A clown leads a game with the children who came to see their mothers in prison.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">As an impossibly catchy &ldquo;Alouette gentille alouette,&rdquo; crackles through the speakers, kids run down the steps of the bus and into the arms of their mothers.&nbsp; There are shouts of joy, peals of laughter, and tears that flow with the kind of happiness one grows to forget behind bars.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">Even the guards are smiling.</span></p> <p>Despite the walls and the bars and the guns, this festival really is like any other.&nbsp; There are clowns and balloons and painted faces, and everywhere there are little fingers interlaced with big fingers, and you can almost feel the hearts of these incarcerated women bursting for joy, if only by the smiles that illuminate the courtyard.</p> Tue, 10 Feb 2015 00:03:12 GMT 2015-02-10T00:03:12Z &quot;The Roma&quot;: Behind the Scenes with Sanjay <p style="font-weight: bold; color: #333366;">by Sanjay Thomas </p> <p><em>ADRA was lucky to have Sanjay Thomas join our crew and act as our "A Closer Walk" host in the field, experiencing the reality of humanitarian aid work. He shared the following photos and thoughts from his time with ADRA and the Roma community in Albania.</em></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;"><img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/Albania_SPB.jpg" border="0" alt="Roma children tug at Sanjay's shirt." width="500" height="750" /></span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">Two street kids are clamoring around the legs of an American tourist.&nbsp; Little hands tug at shirttails and shining eyes stare up at the man from the west.&nbsp; It&rsquo;s obvious: they want something.</span></p> <p>When I went to Albania to film the people derogatively known as &ldquo;gypsies,&rdquo; I had a few stereotypes tucked away in my brain.&nbsp; I&rsquo;m not the kind of person who harbors stereotypes&mdash;I like to think I am open-minded and prejudice-free&mdash;but when these little Roma children started grabbing at me and pulling me every which way, my first thought was <em>great, they want something.</em></p> <p>Just then, a young boy of nine or ten detached himself from my leg and darted into a small roadside shop.&nbsp; He reemerged moments later clutching a big red popsicle in his little hands, with a big red smile splitting his little face.</p> <p>Then he handed his prize popsicle to me.&nbsp;</p> <p>It was one of those moments in life that become a still frame in the brain, where everything you remember about a certain time and place is summarized and symbolized by a kind gesture and a great big smile.</p> <p><img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/IMG_3909.jpg" border="0" alt="Sanjay holds a Roma child during the filming of A Closer Wal" width="450" height="600" /></p> <p>And yes, they did want something from me, and they were determined to clamor and tug until they got it.&nbsp; They wanted to play with me.&nbsp; More specifically, they wanted to use me as a human jungle gym.&nbsp; And they did.&nbsp; Every chance they got.&nbsp; I&rsquo;m telling you, one small group of Roma children has enough energy to power a small city.&nbsp; Add another gaggle of kids and a few more human jungle gyms, and they could light up the world.&nbsp; They certainly lit up the camera with their bright smiles and beaming faces, and our first episode of A Closer Walk would have been empty without them.</p> <p><img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/ALBANIA_14-0869.jpg" border="0" alt="Sanjay says goodbye to Roma children in Albania after filmin" width="600" height="464" /></p> <p>I visited several more countries after that for the documentary series, and they were all amazing and unique in their own way.&nbsp; But I will never forget that smiling boy, that big popsicle, the clamoring kids, and the spirited Roma community.</p> Tue, 27 Jan 2015 02:40:01 GMT 2015-01-27T02:40:01Z Jonathan Duffy to interview on BRITE Radio <p style="font-weight: bold; color: #333366;">by ADRA International Staff</p> <p>WASHINGTON, DC.&mdash;ADRA International President Jonathan Duffy interviewed today with <a href="">BRITE Radio</a> host Stacia Wright about ADRA's work around the world.</p> <p>In the interview with Wright, host of "The Drive," Duffy spoke about his work at ADRA, his childhood in Australia, and even ADRA's Spread Love concert with Take 6.&nbsp;</p> <p>Stacia Wright hosted ADRA's Spread Love concert with Take 6 in September 2014.&nbsp;</p> <p>For more about BRITE Radio and the interview with Duffy, visit BRITE Radio's <a href="">website</a>.</p> Tue, 27 Jan 2015 01:46:50 GMT 2015-01-27T01:46:50Z ADRA decontaminates homes, prevents spread of Ebola <p style="font-weight: bold; color: #333366;">by ADRA International Staff</p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;"><img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/Theophilus_Kabba_and_Hassan_M._Karara_being_sprayed_afte.jpg" border="0" alt="ADRA Staff being sprayed after a disinfection exercise." width="600" height="400" /></span></p> <p class="photocaption">Theophilus Kabba and Hassan Karara after a disinfection exercise in Joe Town, Waterloo. Photo by Emmanuel Cole.</p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">FREETOWN, SIERRA LEONE&mdash; ADRA Sierra Leone is managing a decontamination center and deploying teams to the homes of Ebola victims to decontaminate exposed surfaces and prevent further spread of the virus.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">ADRA Sierra Leone has decontaminated more than 988 homes since November 2014.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">The Sierra Leone National Ebola Response Center (NERC) operates a hotline for the sick and relays information to the decontamination center that mobilizes teams to the homes. If needed, the center can first send an ambulance to pick up bodies or evacuate patients to designated Ebola treatment centers. ADRA Sierra Leone is running this program in conjunction with non-governmental organization Plan Sierra Leone.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">Twelve teams of five have two disinfectors, two sprayers, and one driver. The disinfectors enter houses, spray down walls and surfaces, and remove infected materials. Sprayers wear gloves, a mask, rubber boots, and a backpack of chlorine solution to spray down the disinfectors once the job is finished. All team members wear personal protective equipment, and infected materials such as mattresses, bedding, blankets or mosquito nets are taken to a designated dumpsite run by ADRA staff and British and Sierra Leone military personnel.</span></p> <p>ADRA Sierra Leone is also replacing items that have been removed with new ones.</p> <p>The Ebola virus, easily spread through direct contact with body fluids of an infected person, can also be transmitted through contact with infected bedding, clothing, or surfaces. More than 8,641 reported people have died from the Ebola virus since the outbreak began last spring, including 3,145 in Sierra Leone, according to the World Health Organization.<span style="font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p>The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) International, is the humanitarian arm of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. For 30 years, ADRA&rsquo;s mission has been to follow Christ&rsquo;s example of serving, partnering with, and being a voice for those in need. ADRA works in more than 130 countries providing community development and emergency management.</p> Tue, 27 Jan 2015 01:46:39 GMT 2015-01-27T01:46:39Z ADRA's &quot;A Closer Walk&quot; to Premiere on Hope Channel January 23 at 7 p.m. <p style="font-weight: bold; color: #333366;">by Natalia Lopez-Thismon, ADRA International </p> <p><img src="../images/content/pagebuilder/X77A9096_copy.jpg" border="0" alt="Sanjay and ADRA Albania Staff Film &amp;quot;A Closer Walk&amp;quot;" width="650" height="433" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">Silver Spring, Md.&mdash;ADRA&rsquo;s all-new documentary series, &ldquo;A Closer Walk&rdquo; (#WalkCloser) will premiere on <a title="Hope TV Watch" href="" target="_blank">Hope Channel</a> January 23 at 7 p.m. EST.&nbsp;</span></p> <p>The immersive, nine-part documentary series takes viewers to the most remote places in the world to see how humanitarian aid really works and how change unfolds from impossible circumstances.</p> <p>&ldquo;We hope our supporters will take &ldquo;A Closer Walk&rdquo;<em> </em>with us on Fridays this season,&rdquo; said Jonathan Duffy, ADRA International president. &ldquo;Our work at ADRA is greatly inspired by Matthew 25, and we are excited to pull back the curtain on what humanitarian work looks like and how, through our friends, ADRA is taking God&rsquo;s love to a world in need.&rdquo;</p> <p>The series features the everyday heroes who are transforming the communities where they live. Follow in the footsteps of aid workers in the rainforests of Vanuatu, the refugee camps of Uganda, and with the children of the ex-Soviet Bloc. Each episode shows humanitarian work at the human level, where need is met with love. &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;</p> <p><img style="float: left;" src="../images/content/pagebuilder/A_Closer_Walk_Icon.jpg" border="0" alt="A Closer Walk Icon.jpg" width="300" height="187" />&nbsp; <strong>Upcoming Episodes Include:</strong></p> <p>&nbsp; Episode 1:&nbsp; The Roma (Albania)</p> <p>&nbsp; Episode 2:&nbsp; Selling Stories (Thailand)</p> <p>&nbsp; Episode 3:&nbsp; Seeds of Hope (Uganda)</p> <p>&nbsp; Episode 4:&nbsp; No One Left (Moldova)</p> <p>&nbsp; Episode 5:&nbsp; Stronger than the Storm (The Philippines)</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Episode 6:&nbsp; The Distance We Go&nbsp; (Brazil)</p> <p>Episode 7:&nbsp; Turning a New Leaf (Rwanda) &nbsp;&nbsp; </p> <p>Episode 8:&nbsp; A Woman's World (Peru)</p> <p>Episode 9:&nbsp; Any Lengths (Vanuatu)</p> <p><strong>Episode Summaries:</strong></p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Episode 1:&nbsp; The Roma (Albania)</span></p> <p>For centuries the Roma have suffered discrimination, inequality, and abject poverty. Derogatively labeled &ldquo;gypsies,&rdquo; these people struggle for survival every day on the streets of Albania, with few allies and even fewer resources.&nbsp; Local ADRA workers Rezi and Kristi take us on a Roma experience to a dilapidated hospital, a house crowded to capacity by extended family, and a rare outing to the seaside, to show us the humanity behind the negative stereotypes.</p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Episode 2:&nbsp; Selling Stories (Thailand)</span></p> <p>Displaced families in the Karen hill regions of Thailand are susceptible to one of the most insidious effects of poverty: human trafficking.&nbsp; Young girls are offered lucrative jobs with cash upfront, an incentive most impoverished families simply cannot reject.&nbsp; What they usually don&rsquo;t know, however, is that their daughters will likely become slaves to the commercial sex industry.&nbsp; Local ADRA workers Thomas and Joy give a tour of Keep Girls Safe, a center that shelters the most vulnerable of these girls and provides the skills and education they need to break the cycle of poverty and ignorance.</p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Episode 3:&nbsp; Seeds of Hope (Uganda)</span></p> <p>For the people of Uganda, sharing is not only caring; it is protecting, educating, and loving.&nbsp; For more than 130,000 South Sudanese refugees in Uganda this spirit of generosity is literally life saving.&nbsp; As soon as these refugees cross into the border of Uganda, they are given land, homes, and access to a good education.&nbsp; In a country where there is little to go around, the results are staggering.&nbsp; Join local ADRA staff Booker and Stella as they show just what can be done with a big heart and a selfless spirit.</p> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Episode 4:&nbsp; No One Left (Moldova)</span></p> <p>When the Soviet Union collapsed, the stability of Moldova toppled with it, causing the economy to fall and crime and unemployment to rise.&nbsp; Through it all, the children suffered most.&nbsp; Millions of men and women left home to find work abroad, leaving little ones to fend for themselves. Regardless of the circumstances that caused their parents to disappear, one thing was certain: the children were alone. These kids, many no more than toddlers, were forced to struggle for survival in any way possible.&nbsp; Local ADRA workers Natalia and Andrei show how Rainbow of Hope, a children&rsquo;s center for these abandoned kids, offers more than just survival&mdash;they offer a home and a family.</p> <p>More episode descriptions to follow.</p> <p><a title="More ways to watch Hope. " href="" target="_blank">See more ways to watch Hope Channel.&nbsp;</a></p> <p>For more information or to schedule an interview, contact or</p> Wed, 14 Jan 2015 18:16:12 GMT 2015-01-14T18:16:12Z ADRA Liberia to distribute Christmas Packs to Ebola survivors <p style="font-weight: bold; color: #333366;">by Staff, ADRA International </p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">MONROVIA, LIBERIA &ndash; ADRA Liberia is distributing 800 Christmas Packs to Ebola survivors and their families in five counties in Liberia, including Margibi and Montserrado, the two hardest hit by the virus. </span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">The Christmas Packs&mdash;also called solidarity kits&mdash;contain disinfectant, laundry and bath soap, one set of bedding, basic clothing, a mattress and pillow and cooking pots. The packs also have food for approximately two months including beans, rice, canned fish, powdered milk, cooking oil and sugar.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">Christmas Pack distribution, which will be completed by the end of December, will help meet the basic needs of Ebola survivors and their households during the holiday season. Some households will also receive psychosocial counseling services. Several faith-based partners are supporting this project.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">&ldquo;Though survivors may have lost love ones, come close to death, face stigma in society and have lost livelihood, there is still a community of people who care about them and is ready to support them as they rebuild their lives,&rdquo; said Annette Witherspoon, Emergency Coordinator at ADRA Liberia.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">The Ebola virus has infected a reported 19,340 individuals in West Africa since the outbreak began in March. This includes 7,830 cases in Liberia that led to 3,376 deaths, according to the World Health Organization. &nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">In response to the Ebola crisis in West Africa, ADRA has also distributed personal protective equipment (PPE), disinfectants and emergency food supplies. ADRA has been providing educational materials and engaging congregations and communities in awareness activities.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">For more information or to schedule an interview, contact Cheryl Shaw at <a style="font-size: 10pt;" href=""></a>.</span></p> Tue, 23 Dec 2014 18:04:20 GMT 2014-12-23T18:04:20Z Dr. Jill Biden visits IDPs at Ukraine ADRA Center <img src="" alt="" border="0" /><br /> <span style="font-size: 8pt; font-style: italic;"></span> <p style="font-weight: bold; color: #333366;">by Natalia López-Thismón, ADRA International</p> <p class="photocaption"><span>Photo credit: Romanishyn Vladimir</span></p> <div><span style="font-size: 10pt;">KIEV&mdash;Dr. Jill Biden spoke to a group of ADRA staff, UN agency representatives, and other partner nongovernmental organizations including USAID at the ADRA center in Ukraine on Friday, November 21.</span></div> <p>Biden took a tour of the ADRA Center and visited with an ADRA-hosted family who is internally displaced as a result of the conflict in the country.&nbsp;</p> <p>In her speech, Dr. Biden announced that the US is promising $3,000,000 to aid in the Ukraine crisis.</p> <p>&ldquo;In my travel around the world, I am convinced that where people work together, there is a hope,&rdquo; said Dr. Biden.</p> <p>ADRA&rsquo;s work in Ukraine has focused on medical help for those affected by the conflict in Ukraine. The ADRA Center in Kiev, is also supporting several internally displaced persons (IDPs) including the family that Dr. Biden met.</p> <p>ADRA has also been working together with USAID and OFDA to help vulnerable and displaced families affected by the conflict with non-food items and rent and utilities.</p> <p>More recent projects include the Ukrainian Shelter and Winterization Project, which helps to improve the living conditions of nearly 2,400 households in the Kiev oblast.<span style="font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p>&ldquo;Shelter and winterized access to basic needs and services are of urgent concern in eastern Ukraine,&rdquo; explains Emanuel da Costa, Senior Advisor for Resilience and Humanitarian Response at ADRA International. &ldquo;The response focuses on the most vulnerable households with limited resources, living in collective centers, poor-quality accommodations and in homes with repair to prepare for harsh winter conditions.&rdquo;</p> <p>For photos or more information, please contact;</p> Sat, 22 Nov 2014 00:54:23 GMT 2014-11-22T00:54:23Z ADRA partners with USAID in Food Security Program to reach 264,380 people <p style="font-weight: bold; color: #333366;">Michael Rohm, ADRA International</p> <p><img style="font-size: 10pt;" src="../images/content/pagebuilder/Madagascar_Press_Release.jpg" border="0" alt="Madagascar Press Release.jpg" width="600" height="600" /></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">ANTANANARIVO&mdash; The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) is one of two agencies partnering with USAID in a $75 million food security initiative in Madagascar.&nbsp; The five-year ADRA program titled&nbsp;<em>Asotry</em>* will reduce vulnerability and food insecurity among households and communities in the regions of Amoron&rsquo;i Mania, Haute Matsiatra, and Atsimo Andrefana.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">The program will directly benefit 264,380 children under five, women, and men and comprises the following objectives: improve health and nutrition, increase sustainable access to food, improve disaster preparedness and response, and improve natural resource management.</span></p> <p>&ldquo;ADRA&rsquo;s theory of change is centered around holistic development,&rdquo; said Imad Madanat, vice president of programs for ADRA International.&nbsp; &ldquo;To address the underlying causes of poverty and malnutrition, it is critical that we implement an integrated, multi-sectorial program.&nbsp; In keeping with ADRA's core values, <em>Asotry </em>will help some of the most vulnerable communities in Madagascar.&rdquo;</p> <p><span style="font-size: 10pt;">Because of the high rates of malnutrition and stunting in children under five, ADRA will work with women and children to improve health and nutrition. Women&rsquo;s groups will deliver education and promotion regarding maternal health, breastfeeding, caring for common illnesses, sanitation, and hygiene.</span><span style="font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p>Additionally, farmers will receive technical assistance to sustainably increase crop yields and sales of products.&nbsp; Farmer Field Schools will introduce farmers to agricultural innovations, including drought-resistant seeds, soil management techniques, and pest control.</p> <p>This partnership with USAID follows a long list of successful ADRA projects in Madagascar, many of which were implemented with the help of USAID.</p> <p>&ldquo;We value our partnership with USAID,&rdquo; said Madanat.&nbsp; &ldquo;It has enabled us to deliver high impact interventions and foster positive change around the world.&rdquo;</p> <ul> <li>Name means &lsquo;harvest&rsquo; in Malagasy</li> </ul> Thu, 23 Oct 2014 14:43:33 GMT 2014-10-23T14:43:33Z

Orange Weather Forecast