1.UMVIM is an approved United Methodist ministry.

2. The mission projects are vetted and screened.

3. Volunteer teams can continue their relationship with the project site they served at via The Advance and missionaries.

4. All are welcome to serve.

5. Training, forms, insurance, etc. available

6. It's simple. Contact umvimwj@hotmail.com to get started!

Faith in Action

Faith in Action

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

News from the Ground: Individual Volunteer Experience in Georgia; Golden Cross Sunday; Volunteers Needed in Nicaragua, Nepal, & Guatamala & More

Photo: Children in Sierra Leon, courtesy creativevisions.org. To volunteer there read below>** STORIES FROM THE GROUND: NEWS FROM INDIVIDUAL VOLUNTEER IN GEORGIA

It is Monday, the day after Orthodox Easter and for many Georgians, it is cemetery day. People go to the cemetery and bring red eggs for their loved ones at the cemetery. When people get together they play a little game with the eggs, two people each hold an egg, bang them together, and whoever has the egg that cracks looses and has to give the egg to the winner. Many of our neighbors have stopped by and given us red eggs, precious gifts for Easter.

We have started using an exciting new laundry product called “BINGO”. It promises to “ facilitate” my life. Thus far, I am still waiting for the facilitation to begin but at least I have clean clothes.

Saturday morning the running club participated in the Easter Bunny Mystery run. It was an 8K run and it was raining pretty hard during most of the run. They did a great job in spite of the rain and their parents said that they were amazed that the girls were willing to come out and run in the rain. They wouldn’t do it for their parents or for their Georgian teachers. I suppose it helped that they got some small prizes like those obnoxious Easter candy things called “Peeps”. The kids here love them.

A week ago I visited an orphanage a little ways outside of the city. The orphanage houses about 110 kids between the ages of 6 and 15. When kids turn 16 they are booted out and must care for themselves the best they can. Many of them end up in trouble. Most of the kids are not true orphans but live there because their parents are either too poor to care for them, are in jail, etc. The conditions are relatively good compared to many such places and although their food isn’t fancy, it is adequate and they have clothes to wear and a bed to sleep in.

However, the women who work there do almost nothing to stimulate the kids to learn or acquire new skills. In spite of sunny pleasant weather the kids were all glued to the television watching inappropriate programs with vacant expressions on their faces. I am going to talk to the director of the orphanage about doing some trainings with the staff to teach them how to interact with the kids and to help them emotionally. One little boy appointed himself to be our guide and showed us all around the orphanage grounds. It breaks my heart to see kids who don’t have anyone to love them.

We have had political demonstrations in Tbilisi since April 9 but they have been totally peaceful with no major problems except for rerouting of traffic in the demonstration area. It has had minimal impact on us and we are not worried about it.

We hope you are all doing well and that spring is bringing you some warm sunny days. Stay in touch. We are always anxious to hear from you.
Vic and Kathy


A Sunday in May is recommended for the Golden Cross offering in support of the Health and Welfare Ministries of our Conference. The offering is used to support a number of different needs in Districts and local churches. The primary focus is the support of the sick, older adults, children and youth, and persons with disabilities.

Here are some opportunities for Health and Welfare Ministries in our local churches: the sick can seek a Parish Nurse's recommendations for diagnosis or treatment by specialists or preventive actions to maintain healthy bodies and minds; older adults can be encouraged to continue participation in church activities and physical exercises; health and housing support organizations can be identified for those needing assistance; child safety and care can be subjects for general instruction and specific guidance -- such as a good car seat or how to deal with childhood diseases; mentoring youth in their physical, mental, and spiritual lives which can lead to their continued good health; and meeting the challenge of making provisions for those with disabilities to enjoy the benefits of our church programs.

Applications for Golden Cross grants should describe the need and amount requested in a letter to the Conference Office. Contact Jim Russell at jimrussell1@juno.com or 425-788-6869 if you have any questions. Last year the applicants were flood victims in the Vancouver District so the relatively meager funds were distributed there. If we could reach an average contribution of forty dollars per church, we would have over ten thousand dollars to apply to the significant health and welfare needs in our Conference.


The church in Nepal is growing rapidly. If you feel called to serve in helping to build two churches in Nepal with an UMVIM team August 25 - September 13, 2009 then contact Jan & Kurt Kaiser at love2trvl.imbris.com.


The UMVIM (Volunteers in Missions) program is accepting teams to assist with the clean up and continue the long term recovery of 2007 while needs are being assessed from the 2009 flood.

If you or your church is interested in sending a team, please contact Ronda Cordill UMVIM Annual Conference Coordinator (509-235-5466/509-993-6753 or
r_cordill@hotmail.com) or Jim Truitt (253-630-1268 or jftruitt@comcast.net).


Regina and Bob Elgin will be leading a team to Managua, Nicaragua fromJune 14-23, 2010 to do these tasks:. English Tutoring. Bible School . Preschool projects . Church Construction To receive more information on this trip and how to register, pleasecontact Bob or Regina, relgin@cinci.rr.com, 513-777-5660. This is aUMVIM team from the Ohio River Valley District, East Ohio Conferenceand endorsed by teachUM, UMVIM-NCJ.Submitted by Lorna Jost, Coordinator, UMVIM-NCJ


ROMANIA MISSION TEAM - July 13-27, 2009 – VBS and community service projects supporting Global Hope ministry in Arad, Romania. You are invited to join this team! Contact Global Hope at 720.887.4673 or Will Johnston at willjohnston@earthlink.net

UMVIM TEAM LEADER TRAINING - Wednesday, June 17, 1-4 pm, Redlands UMC, Grand Junction. Contact Ann Fort, annfort8269@comcast.net, 303-220-0840 to register.3)

DISASTER PREPAREDNESS AND RESPONSE TRAINING - Wednesday, June 17, 1-4 pm, Redlands UMC, Grand Junction. Learn how your church can prepare for a disaster and how the United Methodist Church responds to disasters through UMCOR and UMVIM. To register, contact Rev. Gary Haddock, pastor@rumcgj.com, 970-245-1478.

VIMShare - The Winter 2009 issue of our VIMShare newsletter is on our web site, www.rmcvim.org.

DEBEQUE, CO UMC would like a team to help with VBS. Contact Pastor Roberta Botkin, 970-285-7912, 970-216-8682.

LOUISIANA - Youth volunteers age 14 and up are needed to help with home repair from Hurricane Gustav. Contact Laurie Byland, 225-383-4777, X255. Web site is www.thebluetarp.com

YOUNG ADULTS - Age 20-30 - You are invited to participate in an exciting program called Living Justice, June 13-17, 2009 in New York City. The program focus will be Eradicating the Diseases of Poverty:Women, Children and the Struggle for Wholeness. APPLICATION DEADLINE is May 1. Please contact Darlene DiDomineck, ddidomin@gbgm-umc.org, 212-870-3850.

SIERRA LEONE - YOUTH - watch an awesome video on You Tube by two youth who went to Sierra Leone to help build a school. Web site is http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9rUMdLsLHGM.

GUATEMALA - Medical team in September 2009 from St. Luke's UMC urgently needs NURSES to participate. Contact Rev. Pam Rowley, pam@stlukeshr.com, 303-791-0659.

THANK YOU - to all along the Colorado Front Range who have donated books for the "40,000 books for Kenya" Project!

UMCOR DEPOT UTAH - invites volunteers to come and help prepare the depot and process relief supplies.For information, contact Rev. Brian Diggs, 801-973-7250, WestDepot@UMCOR.org.