Tag Archives: U.S.

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.


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


1,000 Days


Action Against Hunger



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


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




IMA World Health


Institute for Sustainable Communities


International Center for Not-for-Profit Law

International Fund for Animal Welfare

International Housing Coalition

International Medical Corps

International Youth Foundation


IntraHealth International


Islamic Relief USA

Living Earth Institute

Mali Nyeta, Inc.

Mercy Corps

Milennium Water Alliance

Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network



Oxfam America




Plan International USA

Rabin Martin

Refugees International


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


Jonathan Duffy to interview on BRITE Radio

Monday, January 26, 2015

WASHINGTON, DC.—ADRA International President Jonathan Duffy interviewed today with BRITE Radio host Stacia Wright about ADRA’s work around the world.

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.

Stacia Wright hosted ADRA’s Spread Love concert with Take 6 in September 2014.

For more about BRITE Radio and the interview with Duffy, visit BRITE Radio’s website.

Oklahoma Tornadoes

On the Ground: ADRA International Responds to the Oklahoma Tornado Devastation

On Monday, May 20, a tornado raked through parts of Oklahoma with winds that exceeded 200 miles per hour, leaving a trail of destruction about 17 miles long. This has caused the destruction of thousands of properties and has injured hundreds of people. Emergency workers have pulled more than 100 survivors from the debris of homes, schools, and hospitals. The majority of the damage took place in the city of Moore, Oklahoma.

Along with government officials and other humanitarian organizations, ADRA International and Adventist Community Services (ACS) are currently assisting survivors by assembling and delivering cleaning kits, food, clothing, and equipment for cleaning debris in homes and buildings. Due to the severe damage in the City of Moore, access to this area is limited. ACS and ADRA will continue to distribute aid throughout the rest of the week and into the weekend.

ADRA International has committed $50,000 of emergency funds to continue to assist the affected areas. Please continue to pray for the families affected by this tornado and especially those who have lost children and other loved ones.

Acting President Announcement

ADRA International Announces Acting President

Former General Conference Treasurer, Robert L. Rawson, has accepted the role of Acting President until a permanent successor to the post is found.

“Elder Rawson is a leader who is widely respected and accomplished with experience at various levels of administrative leadership. We have every confidence in him to lead ADRA during this time of transition and until a new president is appointed and is in place,” said Geoffrey Mbwana, Chair of the ADRA International Board of Directors.

The seven-member search committee – comprised of current ADRA International staff, ADRA network employees and Board members – is conducting an international search and will provide names of qualified candidates to the Board from which the next president will be selected.

“I recognize the importance of this assignment and am humbled by the task ahead. My main objective is to do my very best in building a foundation from which the new president can create and strengthen. ADRA has always been one of my favorite organizations and very close to my heart. I believe that through ADRA we are doing God’s work in the way that Jesus did when He was on Earth – heal the sick, feed the hungry, comfort the suffering,” said Elder Rawson.

An ordained minister, Elder Rawson, 75, was GC Treasurer from 1995 until his retirement in 2002. He served the Seventh-day Adventist Church in finance-related positions for over 40 years with posts in the North Pacific Union Conference, Southeastern California Conference, Iowa Conference, and Vice President for Finance for the Adventist Media Center in Newbury Park, California. Elder Rawson also comes with many years of combined international experience in the Philippines, Japan, and Singapore.

After attending Emmanuel Missionary College (now Andrews University) for three years, Elder Rawson transferred to, and subsequently graduated from, La Sierra University in 1960 with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration.

He and his wife, Carolyn, have three adult sons Rick, Terry and Tim, and six grandchildren.

Current residents of Surprise, Arizona, the Rawsons will be relocating to Maryland and Elder Rawson is expected to commence his duties beginning Monday, July 9.

Leadership Change

ADRA International Board Votes Leadership Change

SILVER SPRING, Md.- The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) International Board of Directors met June 24 and removed Dr. Rudi Maier as president and executive director of ADRA International with immediate effect, announcing the formation of a search committee to find a replacement.

“Making a change in the leadership of any dynamic organization can bring challenges but also a newfound vitality and we have the utmost confidence in our ADRA employees, our supporters and NGO partners and commit that we will move forward even stronger to continue delivering our services with skill, compassion and excellence on an international scale,” said Geoffrey Mbwana, Chairman of the ADRA International Board of Directors.

In the interim, the board has appointed a senior administrator to serve in an acting capacity. Confirmation of his acceptance is pending. The ADRA International Board appointed a search committee of seven individuals comprised of current ADRA International staff, ADRA network employees and board members.

Mbwana added, “It is the constituency that ADRA serves – the poor, the hungry, the widow, the orphan – that we must stay attentive to in doing our work. As our Mission Statement affirms, ‘the agency’s work seeks to improve the quality of life of those in need. ADRA invests in the potential of these individuals through community development initiatives targeting Food Security, Economic Development, Primary Health and Basic Education’ among other portfolios of action.”

ADRA currently implements its programs in more than 100 countries around the world through its extensive network of offices. ADRA continues to be a leading worldwide humanitarian organization with more than 6,000 employees world wide implementing over $150 million in funded projects. ADRA consistently meets the exacting standards for charitable accountability established by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and features the BBB Wise Giving Alliance seal on its website.

ADRA’s mission is to work with people in poverty and distress to create just and positive change through empowering partnerships and responsible action. ADRA continues to be a professional, learning and efficient network that embodies integrity and transparency, reaching across boundaries empowering and speaking out for the at-risk and forgotten to achieve measurable, documented and durable changes in lives and society.

World No Tobacco Day May 31, 2012

World No Tobacco Day: ADRA Fights to End Tobacco Use

SILVER SPRING, Md. – SILVER SPRING, Md. – On May 31 the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) is joining the World Health Organization (WHO) in the annual World No Tobacco Day, an initiative created by the WHO to raise awareness of the dangers of tobacco use, and expose the tactics used by the tobacco industry to lure consumers to use their products.

This year, ADRA’s World No Tobacco Day campaign is titled, “Innocent in Appearance. Deadly in Effect,” and resonates with the WHO’s efforts to reveal the dangerous health risks related to tobacco use. According to the WHO, tobacco use is one of the leading preventable causes of death, and is responsible for approximately 6 million deaths among people each year. Of those 6 million deaths, more than 600 thousand are non-tobacco users, such as persons exposed to second-hand smoke.

In Cambodia, ADRA is working towards reducing the health and economic impact of tobacco use through an initiative called “Tobacco or Health.” By collaborating with local government departments, military personnel, religious leaders, and youth, ADRA has made gains towards raising awareness on the harmful effects of tobacco use, and is working towards implementing tobacco prevention strategies and policies.

“Our team [ADRA Cambodia] is in a program stage where we are focusing on rural community behavior change. We are also linked to the national legal regulatory aspect of tobacco control, and have been working on monitoring the enforcement of two current national regulations – the requirement of health warning labels and prohibition of tobacco advertising,” said Mark Schwisow, Country Director for ADRA Cambodia. “A third regulation on the Smoke Free Public Environments campaign is currently being drafted and considered by the government, as well as further considerations on the comprehensive tobacco control law.”

In addition to its involvement with tobacco regulation and policies, ADRA Cambodia is running a five-day cessation program called, “Khmer Quit Now!” To date, more than 7,000 people have joined the program and have successfully quit smoking.

“ADRA Cambodia’s Tobacco or Health program has been committed since the mid 1990’s to ensuring that all people in Cambodia can both stop smoking as well as maintain a safe and secure environment – free from tobacco smoke,” Schwisow added. We want to do our part so that the people of Cambodia can remain protected from the dangers of tobacco industry influence, which promotes this destructive habit.”

Happy Mother’s Day

Mothers’ Day: ADRA Continues to Support Mothers Around the World

SILVER SPRING, Md. – This coming Sunday, millions of men, women, and children around the world will be taking the time to honor their mothers who have sacrificed their time and energy, juggled various roles from nurturer to bedtime storyteller, and have given so much of themselves for the sake of others. The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) recognizes the value mothers contribute not just to heir home, but their community, and because of that seeks to help mothers be the best they can be.

In several countries throughout the world, ADRA develops projects that offer mothers vocational training classes to help them better provide for themselves, and their families. These projects are typically offered to low-income, unemployed mothers, and widows who are under more pressure to make ends meet.

In Bangladesh’s capital city of Dhaka, ADRA is helping low-income and unemployed women increase their household incomes by providing training in sewing, a vocational skill that can help a person find employment in the city’s thriving garment industry. With increased income comes increased opportunity to send children to school, purchase text books and school uniforms, ensure food is on the table for hungry mouths, and enables families to pay for medical assistance when needed.

Motherhood takes on many facets, and often one of those facets is family doctor. ADRA works with mothers and teaches them how to identify and prevent common childhood diseases, so that they can more effectively look after the health of their children. In addition, ADRA offers food preparation training and educational classes on the importance of breastfeeding newborns. Through ADRA’s programs, mothers are encouraged to keep their children’s vaccinations up to date, and are even given instructions on how to make Oral Rehydration Salts (ORS) to care for children suffering from illnesses that cause dehydration.

This year, and every year, ADRA strives to help mothers reach their God-given potential, and continues to support mothers in their efforts to raise healthy and happy children.

World Malaria Day April 25, 2012

World Malaria Day: ADRA is Making a Difference

SILVER SPRING, Md. – April 25 marks World Malaria Day, a day set aside to commemorate worldwide efforts to control this preventable yet deadly disease. The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) is continuing its work to reduce the numbers of people infected and killed by malaria every year worldwide.

This year’s theme for World Malaria Day, “Sustain Gains, Save Lives: Invest in Malaria,” communicates the notion that investments towards malaria control efforts remain vital if malaria is to be successfully eradicated.

“Since 2004, Malaria deaths have declined by nearly a third,” said United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. “Yet malaria remains a leading killer, and continues to suck the lifeblood of economies around the world. At this critical juncture we must intensify our efforts to defeat this disease,” Ki-moon added.

In efforts towards eliminating malaria-related deaths, ADRA develops projects with a focus of mobilizing entire communities. These projects offer training courses for community leaders on methods and techniques to achieve a malaria-free environment. The leaders then share the life-saving techniques to others in their community, equipping them with the knowledge on how to protect themselves, and their children, from contracting the disease.

“ADRA remains dedicated in our efforts towards reducing malaria-related deaths, and because of our commitment to this cause, we believe this goal can be achieved,” said Sonya Funna Evelyn, Senior Technical Advisor for Health at ADRA International.  “Through strategic partnerships, and a focus on providing capacity-building support, medication, and bed nets, ADRA is able to address the challenges of malaria, and ultimately work towards its eradication.”

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), infected mosquitoes are known to predominantly bite between dusk and dawn.  ADRA distributes mosquito nets that have proven to be a simple, yet highly effective preventable measure easily employed by beneficiaries. The nets act as an effective barrier between mosquitoes carrying the disease and the human host reducing the level of exposure to possible infection.

According to the WHO, statistics state that since 2000 malaria mortality rates have fallen globally by more than 25 percent, and have fallen by 33 percent in the Africa. Although noteworthy progress has been made in eliminating malaria, it remains a dangerous killer, taking the lives of an estimated 650,000 people in 2010. In addition, most deaths occur among children living in Africa where the disease claims the life of one child every 60 seconds.

“The great advances of recent years show that this battle can be won. It is time to finish the job. Success is too close, and the cost of failure too great,” said Ki-moon.

April 25 was originally declared Africa Malaria Day in 2000, but in 2008, World Malaria Day was also launched on April 25 to commemorate the work done around the world to control the deadly disease.

To learn more about ADRA’s life-changing work, please contact ADRA at 1.800.424.ADRA (2372) or give online at www.adra.org

Follow ADRA on Twitter and Facebook to get the latest information as it happens.

ADRA is a global non-governmental organization providing sustainable community development and disaster relief without regard to political or religious association, age, gender, race or ethnicity.

For more information about ADRA, visit www.adra.org

Earth Day April 22, 2012

Earth Day: ADRA Celebrates Commitment to Maintain a Healthy World

SILVER SPRING, Md. – April 22 will mark Earth Day 2012, a day set aside each year to remind us of our responsibility to protect the rich resources available on our planet that sustain the lives of the world’s estimated 7 billion inhabitants. The Adventist Development and Relief Agency ( ADRA) remains committed to take care of earth’s natural resources, educating and training people to work with it in creative and beneficial ways.

“ADRA recognizes the importance of taking care of the environment and strives to implement environmentally-friendly practices in all of its activities,” said Jozimo Santos Rocha, Senior Technical Advisor for Agriculture and Economic Development for ADRA International.

ADRA understands that earth’s resources are essential in supporting people’s livelihoods, fostering that approach through agriculturally friendly projects. In Western Nepal, ADRA is using sustainable agro-based activities to fight against the effects of poverty, increasing food security, and promoting income diversification. ADRA is doing this by increasing income-generating capacities of women through agriculture-related entrepreneurial and vocational classes.

In response to chronic food insecurity and poverty in Ghana’s rural communities, ADRA implemented an integrated food security project using fruit trees that not only provide supplemental food, but in addition provide thick shade that protects the soil from desertification. Citrus, mango, and cashew trees were planted, intercropped with short-term annual staple crops, to provide immediate household food needs, and to enable long-term income generation over 30 years enabling credit repayment. ADRA’s approach to agroforestry, supported by capacity building and market linkages, offered numerous opportunities for sustainable rural livelihood enhancement and poverty reduction.

“Vulnerable farmers are more prone to harm the environment due to destructive agricultural practices. This is due to various reasons, amongst the most common are the imminent need to feed their hungry families, and a lack of knowledge about the environment,” explained Rocha. “Through training and project activities, ADRA not only teaches farmers how to improve their production, but to do so in an environmentally-friendly approach.”

This Earth Day, ADRA encourages everyone to get involved in preserving the natural resources in their own communities and look for ways to be better stewards of these finite resources.

To learn more about ADRA’s humanitarian efforts, please contact ADRA at 1.800.424.ADRA (2372) or give online at www.adra.org

Follow ADRA on Twitter and Facebook to get the latest information as it happens.

ADRA is a global non-governmental organization providing sustainable community development and disaster relief without regard to political or religious association, age, gender, race or ethnicity.

For more information about ADRA, visit www.adra.org

World Water Day, March 22, 2013

World Water Day: ADRA Transforms Communities with the Power of Water

SILVER SPRING, Md. – On the 22nd of March, the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) joins the world in commemorating World Water Day, and continues to implement projects that make clean water available throughout disadvantaged communities around the world. ADRA recognizes the life-saving role of clean drinkable water, and its necessity towards maintaining and restoring healthy communities.

ADRA’s water and sanitation projects are designed to provide families with improved access to clean, drinkable water. By installing and rehabilitating new and existing water supplies, ADRA works to raise awareness and improve sanitation and irrigation systems, teaching beneficiaries to protect their water sources from contamination. In addition, ADRA works to make water readily available in emergency situations when clean water is scarce.

In Cambodia, after deadly fighting broke-out over a disputed temple in the Preah Vihear province in northern Cambodia, families fearing for their lives began to flee their homes to internally displaced person (IDP) camps. Need-assessments indicated a high demand for water sources within the camps. ADRA responded to urgent need of water by drilling wells to give water access to an estimated 2,500 families. The first completed well drilled by ADRA provided up to 2,110 gallons (approximately 8,000 liters) of water per hour.

In Zimbabwe, ADRA has been drilling boreholes in schools and communities, bringing life-changing water to thousands.

“The drilling is very relevant because it means people do not have to walk long distances to access safe water. Before, while at school, children would worry about fetching water for their families. Now that it is available at their school, they no longer leave classes,” shared ADRA Zimbabwe Country Director Zivai Nengomasha.

ADRA has found that drilling boreholes has propelled additional initiatives by community members and schools within the benefitted areas. Some schools have started offering new classes such as agriculture because of the new supply of water. Small-scale gardens are being cultivated and are successfully sustained, an example of one of the added advantages water brings.

In Waterfalls, a southern suburb of Zimbabwe’s capital Harare, the Newstart children’s home was without a reliable source of water, and almost entirely depended on water from unreliable boreholes. This orphanage is home to nearly 70 children, some of whom are HIV positive. Prior to ADRA’s arrival to their neighborhood, the orphanage fetched water from a poor yielding borehole. Upon completing drilling, ADRA was able to provide Newstart children’s home with a consistently high-yielding borehole, giving 20 liters of water every two minutes.

“When drilling for boreholes, you really just have to pray and hope that you get water,” explained Nengomasha. “Now they have plenty of water for washing and cooking, and they can finally use their land to grow vegetables to eat. It is a miracle for that orphanage.”

The United Nations General Assembly designated March 22 as World Water Day, and was first commenced on March 22, 1993. Each year, World Water Day highlights a particular aspect of freshwater, and advocates for the sustainable management of freshwater resources. The theme for this year’s World Water Day is “Water and Food Security.”