ADRA’s Ebola Response Continues

The Ebola outbreak in West Africa was unprecedented in its scale, with 25,600 reported cases and 10,600 deaths. Along with the health threat, Ebola also disrupted farming, economic activity, school systems, and even social customs, leaving very few not affected.

ADRA’s Ebola response in Liberia and Sierra Leone is focused on three main areas:

Awareness and Prevention

  • ADRA Liberia’s community health campaigns, including media and handouts, have educated more than 32,000 people on how to protect themselves and their families.
  • More than 335 soap and chlorine hand-washing stations were established in schools, community centers, public areas, and other strategic locations.
  • ADRA Sierra Leone’s decontamination center have disinfected more than 2,600 households and replaced contaminated mattresses, bedding, and mosquito nets.

Clinical Response

  • ADRA sent 7 shipments of personal protective equipment (PPE) and medical supplies to protect staff and community around Cooper Adventist Hospital in Liberia.

 Community Support

  • More than 140,000 people received emergency food supplies after their crops and income were cut off by the Ebola crisis.
  • In Liberia, ADRA has distributed more than 800 survivor kits with mattresses, bedding, food, soap, and basic household items.

Around 285,000 school meals are being provided to students who have returned to school.

ADRA Philippines distributes emergency food packs after Typhoon Haiyan.

ADRA Urges USAID Leader Appointment

ADRA encourages President Obama to appoint USAID Administrator

WASHINGTON, DC.— On April 15, the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) International joined more than 100 other individuals and nongovernmental organizations in advocating President Barack Obama to nominate a permanent Administrator to the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Although ADRA commends the work of Administrator Rajiv Shah and Acting Administrator Alfonso Lenhardt, the organization and its partners unanimously and unequivocally agree that to ensure the continued effectiveness of USAID’s agenda, a strong, committed leader must be appointed and approved.

“USAID needs an experienced and skilled leader in order to fulfill the ‘long-term commitment to rebuilding USAID as the U.S. Government’s lead development agency and as the world’s premier development agency.’”

Formed in 1961 by President John F. Kennedy “to end extreme poverty and to promote resilient, democratic societies while advancing security and prosperity”, USAID has been a cornerstone and leader of the global development community. As an agency that already lacks a Cabinet-level voice, it is imperative that the organization has strong leadership at the top in order for it to maintain its status as the shining star of humanitarian relief.

For a full copy of the letter sent to President Barack Obama from ADRA and its partners, read the letter below or click here. To learn more about USAID please visit their website at: http://www.usaid.gov

About ADRA

The Adventist Development and Relief Agency International is the humanitarian arm of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Its work empowers communities and changes lives around the globe by providing sustainable community development and disaster relief. For more information, visit ADRA.org.


April 15, 2015

The President

The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20500

ATTN: Ms. Gayle Smith, Special Assistant to the President

Dear Mr. President:

We, the undersigned organizations and individuals, urge you to act expeditiously to nominate a permanent Administrator to the United States Agency for International Development. Having a Senate-confirmed appointee at the helm of USAID is essential to advancing U.S. development goals and the aid effectiveness agenda.

We have been pleased to see the administration prioritize development alongside defense and diplomacy as a key pillar of U.S. foreign policy. Under the leadership of Administrator Rajiv Shah and Acting Administrator Alfonso Lenhardt, USAID has proven the important role that foreign assistance plays in support of our policy goals. Without a confirmed political appointment, this continued elevation and inclusion of the development voice is at risk.

In recent years, USAID has made dramatic steps in strengthening its capacity to deliver results for the American people and for people in developing countries around the world. The USAID Forward agenda, for example, is focused on ensuring that U.S. development assistance supports the outcomes of the Busan Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation, including ownership of development priorities by developing countries, a focus on results and sustainable impact, creating new partnerships for development including all local actors, and ensuring co-operation is transparent and accountable to all citizens.

When the Administrator position was vacant in 2009 for nearly a full year, USAID and its programs suffered. As an agency that already lacks a Cabinet-level voice, having strong leadership at the top is imperative. USAID needs an experienced and skilled leader in order to fulfill the “long-term commitment to rebuilding USAID as the U.S. Government’s lead development agency and as the world’s premier development agency” as articulated in the 2010 policy directive for global development.

We ask that you nominate a new Administrator as soon as possible to sustain strong U.S. leadership on development programs that are vital to our national interests and an expression of our core values, as well as crucial to the lives and well-being of women and men around the globe.

Individuals

William Anderson, MFAN Principal

Nancy A. Aossey, President and CEO, International Medical Corps

Brian Atwood, Dean, Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota; Former Administrator, USAID

David Beckmann, President, Bread for the World

Rodney Bent

Azzedine Downes, President and CEO, International Fund for Animal Welfare

Pierre Ferrari, President and CEO, Heifer International

Henrietta H. Fore, Former Administrator, USAID

Dr. Helene Gayle, President, CARE

Dr. Edwin H. Gragert, Executive Director, Global Campaign for Education-US

George Ingram, Senior Fellow, Brookings; MFAN Co-Chair

Jim Kunder, Former Deputy Administrator, USAID

Ben Leo, Senior Fellow and Director of Rethinking US Development Policy,
Center for Global Development

Kristin M. Lord, President and CEO, IREX

Senator Richard G. Lugar (Ret.), MFAN Honorary Co-Chair

Barbara McMurray, President and CEO, International Housing Coalition

Peter McPherson, Former Administrator, USAID

Carolyn Miles, President and CEO, Save the Children; MFAN Co-Chair

Amb. (Ret.) Thomas J. Miller, President & CEO, IESC

Rob Mosbacher, Former President and CEO, OPIC

Andrew S. Natsios, Former Administrator, USAID

John Norris, Executive Director of the Sustainable Security and Peacebuilding Initiative, Center for American Progress

Larry Nowels, Independent Consultant

Raymond C. Offenheiser, President, Oxfam America

Diana Ohlbaum, President, DLO Global LLC

Carol Peasley, MFAN Principal

The Honorable John Porter, Former Member of U.S. House of Representatives

William S. Reese, President and CEO, International Youth Foundation

Tessie San Martin, President and CEO, Plan International USA

Daniel Runde


Richard L. Santos, President and CEO, IMA World Health

Liz Schrayer


Alexander Shakow, Co-Chair, USAID Alumni Association

Serra Sippel, President, Center for Health and Gender Equity

Alison N. Smith, President and CEO, InsideNGO

Dr. Christine Sow, Executive Director and CEO, Global Health Council

Dr. Jeffrey L. Sturchio, President and CEO, Rabin Martin

Connie Veillette, Senior Fellow, The Lugar Center; MFAN Co-Chair

Jennifer Windsor, CEO, Women for Women International

Organizations

1,000 Days

ACDI/VOCA

Action Against Hunger

ActionAid

Adeso

ADRA International

Alliance to End Hunger

American Friends Service Committee

American Jewish World Service

American Refugee Committee

American Values Network

Association for International Agriculture and Rural Development

Bread for the World

Buddhist Global Relief

CARE

Center for Health and Gender Equity (CHANGE)

ChildFund International

Church World Service

Concern Worldwide

Congressional Hunger Center

Counterpart International

Fanm Ayisyen Nam Miyami, Inc.

Food Tank
Foods Resource Bank

Freedom House

General Board of Church and Socety of the United Methodist Church

Global Campaign for Education-US

Global Communities

Global Fund for Women

Global Health Council

Global Poverty Project

Habitat for Humanity

Heifer International

Helen Keller International

ICCO

IESC

IFES

IMA World Health

InsideNGO

Institute for Sustainable Communities

InterAction

International Center for Not-for-Profit Law

International Fund for Animal Welfare

International Housing Coalition

International Medical Corps

International Youth Foundation

Internews

IntraHealth International

IREX

Islamic Relief USA

Living Earth Institute

Mali Nyeta, Inc.

Mercy Corps

Milennium Water Alliance

Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network

NCBA CLUSA

ONE

Oxfam America

Pact

PAI

PCI

Plan International USA

Rabin Martin

Refugees International

RESULTS

Save the Children

The Borgen Project

USAID Alumni Association

Volunteers for Economic Growth Alliance (VEGA)

WASH Advocates

Water for South Sudan

WaterAid America

Women for Afghan Women (DC Office)

Women for Women International

Women Thrive Worldwide

World Concern

 

Support for Victims of Boko Haram Insurgency

ADRA Continues to Support Victims of Boko Haram Insurgency

LAGOS, NIGERIA—One year ago, Boko Haram’s abduction of more than 200 schoolgirls in Nigeria captured the attention of the world and provoked the #BringBackOurGirls viral campaign.

On Monday April 13, UNICEF announced that Boko Haram has to date rendered a total of 800,000 children and their families homeless in Northern Nigeria.

“ADRA is on the frontlines of this crisis,” said Marie-Jo Guth, ADRA’s Program Manager for Emergencies. “Our colleagues at ADRA Nigeria are doing an amazing job by bringing life-saving food to families that have suffered the most brutal abuses from Boko Haram.”

ADRA is distributing food to about 1,500 internally displaced persons (IDPs), providing psychosocial support to 100 displaced children, has provided assistance to help mitigate diarrhea disease among 200 children under the age of five, and has given prenatal mentoring to 30 pregnant women in Kwana Waya Camp.

Boko Haram has completely destroyed entire villages, causing millions to flee their homes in search of safety. The National Emergency Management Agency reported in March that there are 1.2 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Nigeria. The attacks have also prompted 203,000 Nigerians and stranded migrants to escape to neighboring countries. In Adamawa State Nigeria, where ADRA is working, there are nearly 218,000 IDPs.

Our current work in Adamawa state has been difficult due to limited road access. ADRA staff has gone to great lengths, transporting themselves and materials by air and purchasing vehicles locally.

“Our team are deploying incredible efforts and demonstrating a great sense of dedication for their humanitarian mission,” said Guth.

About ADRA

The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) International is the humanitarian arm of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Its work empowers communities and changes lives around the globe by providing sustainable community development and disaster relief. For more information, visit ADRA.org.

From Here to There

Welcome to ADRA’s new blog! We are very excited to have this outlet where we can share not only what we do, but also how and why we do it.

Whether your contribution is a prayer from your heart or a donation from your pocket, we want you to see how your action here changes lives there.

You might be asking where, exactly, is “there?” ADRA currently works in more than 130 countries around the world. In the next few weeks alone, Here & There will take you to Nepal, Mozambique, and Lebanon to see God’s love in action and meet those who have been touched by this ministry.

We’ll also be bringing in our technical experts, not only those based in Silver Spring, but also the local ADRA field staff worldwide, to answer your questions about how wells are dug, how goat banks work, and maybe even teach you a thing or two about gardening ADRA-style.

In the meantime, let me introduce you to the blog team:

 

Ashley

Ashley Eisele,
Content Manager

I’m a lifelong writer and the lucky editor of this new blog. Born in Tennessee, but also a citizen of Australia, I answer to both “howdy” and “g’day” if you need to get in touch: blog@adra.org.

 

Erykah

 Erykah St. Louis,
Digital Strategy Associate

  Erykah may not be familiar to you (yet), but
our new website is the product of her artistic
brain and stylish eye. She’s a one-woman digital powerhouse from Canada and a people magnet when she travels.

 

 

NataliaNatalia Lopez-Thismon,
Associate Director for Communication

Our communication and PR maven, Natalia, left the Miami Heat to join ADRA. Producing our TV show, this Venezuela native saw more of the world in 6 months than many will get to see in a lifetime.

 

Lauren

Lauren Lombard,
Marketing Specialist

An ambassador for ADRA, Lauren travels the country sharing our story at events. She loves being the bridge between the amazing people who make our work possible and those who inspire us.

 

Michael wall

Michael Rohm, Content Intern

An intern only in title (and pay), Michael is a vital member of our team. This Oregonian is a natural storyteller, a masterful copywriter, and a champion of following every goat trail wherever it may lead.

 

A Women’s World

A Women’s World: Behind the Scenes With Sanjay

Seated at the large oak desk centered in her expansive office, I couldn’t believe that Hermilia’s successful career as a lawyer was built entirely with the money she earned from a copy machine business just a few years ago. But here in the high plateau city of Juliaca, the limits of possibility have been redefined by the tireless ambition of women just like her, and together they have established female achievement as the rule rather than the exception.

Hermilia 2

Before Hermilia received her ADRA microloan, she was the uneducated wife of an impoverished farmer, raising a young boy whose destiny was grounded in poverty. Time passed, the small family remained poor.

When she was selected by ADRA to join the microloan program, Hermilia sensed that, with enough hard work, this money was going to change everything. With that attitude, Hermilia got busy. The sum was just enough for a copy machine, a few office supplies, and a modest rental space. Hermilia opened shop. Time passed, the small business expanded.

Hermilia

Like something from a fable, the copy business continued to grow and grow, and give and give. For the first time in her life, Hermilia had the resources to dream, so she enrolled at the local college and paid for her son, Abel, to join her. Every day, the two would sit together in class and study together at home, struggling through the material, celebrating after a hard exam.

Through it all, her husband supported her dream. What should seem like a common response is actually an aberration in the town of Juliaca. At best, most husbands are uncomfortable with a successful wife. At worst, they become violent. It is tragically common for a woman to be driven away from her dreams in fear.

Hermilia was not one of those women. After years of poverty, of supporting a family, of building a business, and, finally, of diligent studying, Hermilia graduated from law school, her son standing beside her with his own law degree in hand.

PERU 14-0146

Señora Hermilia gifts Spencer, A Closer Walk’s producer/director with a traditional t’anta wawa.

Now, from behind the large oak desk in her expansive office, Hermilia fights for women whose dreams are in jeopardy. As in the past, her son is at her side. Abel is part of the next generation of men who have grown up in the presence of women who found a voice, built a business, and chased a dream.

Because of that one microloan, entire generations have been ripped from poverty before they are even alive to experience it. When Abel has children, it will be as a successful lawyer instead of his old destiny as a poor farmer. Those children will learn to value education, and when they have children, that desire for learning and success will be encoded in their genes, and imprinted on their young minds.

Perhaps best of all, they will recognize the capability of women, who are rapidly building a world where these dreams are made possible.

Vital Needs Met in Vanuatu

PORT VILA, VANUATU— ADRA Vanuatu continues to support the response to Tropical Cyclone Pam by providing local communities in need with safety, food, and access to water.

On Friday, 130 water filtration kits were distributed to four locations in the northeast area of Efate, the main island of Vanuatu. The filtration kits convert contaminated water into clean drinking water and have been set up in schools and churches within the communities.

Six ADRA-supported evacuation centers were set-up with generators to increase the safety and security for the women and children, and to charge devices to assist with communication.

Since Saturday, ADRA Vanuatu volunteers have distributed 320 much needed supplementary food parcels, enough to sustain a family of five people for up to two weeks, to displaced people in the ADRA-supported evacuation centers.

Currently there are nine ADRA-supported evacuation centers across the island of Efate, supporting and providing more than 1,000 displaced people with shelter. ADRA Vanuatu Country Director, Mark le Roux, is grateful to all the volunteers, and the effective coordination with our partners who are helping ADRA with the response.

“Our volunteers are working hard to make sure the distribution of the food parcels happens quickly to those who need them most,” said le Roux. “To effectively respond to the needs of the people, we rely on strong partnerships; with our local community, our volunteers, across all the agencies involved, and coordinated through the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO)”.

“Coordination and cooperation is essential to ensure long-term, future planning for the people of Vanuatu,” he said.

At this point, all ADRA staff that had been missing has been accounted for.

Cleanup After Cyclone Pam Begins

Cleanup begins in Vanuatu, ADRA’s response continues

PORT VILA, VANUATU— The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA)

is playing a key role in securing the health and sanitation in 10 of the 20 evacuation centers in Port Vila. ADRA has made plumbed water available at nine of the 10 evacuation centers with the last evacuation center’s tank being refilled by the fire service.

The number of latrines in the evacuation centers is still inadequate, with as many as 300 people using one toilet. ADRA is continuing to provide hygiene information sessions in 10 evacuation centers. Field staff has already distributed hygiene supplies to families in the centers, including soap and other prepositioned materials.

“Ensuring good hygiene is critical following a disaster like this,” said Mark le Roux, ADRA Vanuatu Country Director. “Disease can spread quickly and with health services already stretched the situation can turn deadly.”

ADRA’s plan of action includes installing additional latrines, building temporary bathing facilities, and continuing hygiene messaging daily.

ADRA has also deployed a team of volunteers to help with cleanup efforts in the urban areas of Port Vila. Although the power outage continues, the weather has remained clear, allowing residents to start cleaning up and gathering what is left of their homes.

Logistical issues in response to the Cyclone Pam’s devastation are hampering the ability to respond on other islands.

“Communication between the islands is still down,” reported le Roux. “We still don’t have a good picture of the cyclone’s impact on many of the islands.”

Further information will be provided as it becomes available.

Follow ADRA International on Twitter and Facebook for more updates.

About ADRA

The Adventist Development and Relief Agency International is the humanitarian arm of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Its work empowers communities and changes lives around the globe by providing sustainable community development and disaster relief. For more information, visit ADRA.org.

Long Road Ahead for Vanuatu

“Severe and long-lasting crisis for Vanuatu”

PORT VILA, VANUATU—“This is going to be a longterm recovery and rebuilding process for Vanuatu. Agriculture, houses, and infrastructure have been destroyed,” reported Mark le Roux, ADRA Vanuatu Country Director reported after meetings with local partners and aid agencies. “This will be a severe and long-lasting crisis for Vanuatu.”

The biggest challenge aid agencies like ADRA are facing at the moment is downed cellular networks on all the islands, but plans to respond are moving forward as humanitarian organizations meet to coordinate the response.

ADRA volunteers and staff members have already started visiting evacuation centers to conduct training on how disease spreads. In some evacuation centers there are up to 300 people per toilet, and there are no handwashing facilities.

“There is a very real threat of disease spreading in a situation like this,” explained LeRoux. “And there is a shortage of medical staff because some doctors have not been able to report to work.”

An old section of the hospital in Port Vila has been flooded out with patients being moved to a new wing of the hospital. Field staff reports that there aren’t enough beds and that  generator power was lost due to flood waters.

ADRA Vanuatu has still not heard from 10 staff members, 5 in Pentecost and 5 in Malakulo.

Further information will be provided as it becomes available.

Follow ADRA International on Twitter and Facebook for more updates.

Donate to ADRA’s emergency response fund.

About ADRA

The Adventist Development and Relief Agency International is the humanitarian arm of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Its work empowers communities and changes lives around the globe by providing sustainable community development and disaster relief. For more information, visit ADRA.org.

Cyclone Pam wreaks havoc in Vanuatu

Tropical Cyclone Pam wreaks havoc in Vanuatu, ADRA in place to respond

PORT VILA, VANUATU—Tropical Cyclone Pam ripped through the islands of Vanuatu yesterday, leaving a path of destruction in its wake.

The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) is already on the ground in place to respond in coordination with local partners and aid agencies.

Currently, ADRA is still waiting to hear from all of the ADRA Vanuatu team, including five missing in Pentecost and 5 in Malakula who have not been able to communicate due to downed cellular networks.

ADRA Vanuatu has been traveling around Port Vila to check on current conditions and reported that trees and power lines across the roads were blocking passage to main roads. The team also reported a “pre-organized evacuation center that started to get ripped apart during the night, so people had to be moved to another site in the middle of the cyclone.”

Field staff is also reporting that families whose homes have survived the last two cyclones lost their homes during Pam.

“Families are trying to gather as much as they can,” said Mark le Roux, ADRA Vanuatu Country Director. “Even sturdy houses didn’t make it—walls and roofs came down.”

ADRA is prepositioned to release emergency kits from three warehouses in Shefa, Efate, and Tafea. The kits include soap, water filtration kits, and collapsible water containers. ADRA is prepared to participate in assessing the situation when the storm has passed to decide what local communities will need most.

Further information will be provided as it becomes available.

Follow ADRA International on Twitter and Facebook for more updates.

About ADRA

The Adventist Development and Relief Agency International is the humanitarian arm of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Its work empowers communities and changes lives around the globe by providing sustainable community development and disaster relief. For more information, visit ADRA.org.

ADRA Prepares for Cyclone Pam in Vanuatu

ADRA ready to respond to Tropical Cyclone Pam in Vanuatu

PORT VILA, VANUATU 4:30 p.m.—The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) is on high alert as category 5 Tropical Cyclone Pam hits the archipelago of Vanuatu.

ADRA is prepositioned to release emergency kits from three warehouses in Shefa, Efate, and Tafea. The kits include soap, water filtration kits, and collapsible water containers. ADRA is prepared to participate in assessing the situation when the storm has passed to decide what local communities will need most.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reports that the winds in the eye region of the storm are averaging up to 270 kph (167 mph) with gusts up to 340 kph (211 mph). Heavy to torrential rainfall and flooding, including flash flooding are expected as well as landslides and coastal flooding from storm surge.

There are already 450 people in evacuation centers in the northern provinces—mostly schools, churches, and government buildings. There are another two cyclones forming that could affect Vanuatu in the near future.

Further information will be provided as it becomes available.

Follow ADRA International on Twitter and Facebook for more updates.

About ADRA

The Adventist Development and Relief Agency International is the humanitarian arm of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Its work empowers communities and changes lives around the globe by providing sustainable community development and disaster relief. For more information, visit ADRA.org.

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