ROCKY MOUNTAIN AREA FIGHTS EBOLA IN SIERRA LEONE AND WINS
In late May of 2014 twenty-five team members going on 3 different teams to Sierra Leone were disappointed when their trip was cancelled due to the outbreak of Ebola. One team was scheduled to work at Heritage UMC High School, one with the new Kabala UMC Church, and one with Nar Sarah Medical Clinic and the Kabala UMC School for the Blind. Due to Ebola, schools were closed, public gatherings were limited, transportation and movement was restricted, burial customs were banned or altered, and many hospitals and medical clinics had to close due to limited resources to protect against and treat Ebola.
Nar Sarah Clinic however stayed open and joined with the local Ebola Task Force in Kabala to fight back against Ebola at the beginning of the outbreak. Road blocks were established on roads leading into the District (County) All travelers were required to have their temperature taken and to wash their hands in chlorinated water. Nar Sarah presented Ebola education programs on the radio and all Clinic patients were taught the dangers of Ebola. Sixty hand washing stations (tippy-taps) were built in the community and supplied with chlorinated (when possible) water, and soap was provided.
Nar Sarah Clinic reached out for help from supporters in the U.S. to help them in the fight to save lives. Over 250 individuals from many States, and local churches, responded by donating $100,000 within a period of three months. With that money Nar Sarah purchased four motor bikes and a Toyota Land Cruiser to reach several remote and isolated villages. Ebola health workers were hired, trained, and paid, supplies were purchased to build tippy-taps in the villages, preventive medicines and vitamins were purchased to treat diseases that weakens the body, and rice was purchased to feed the hungry.
The trained health workers visited villages, some only accessible by paths or 4 wheel drive vehicles, in four Chiefdoms, distributed 1,500 lbs. of rice, built 65 tippy taps, and distributed 320 bars of soap. In the process they found some villages that had no idea Ebola existed. Nar Sarah presented more radio programs to educate the people about Ebola, and did training classes in each village visited. This program continues today.
Because of the effort by Nar Sarah and the local Ebola Task Force, only 4 cases of Ebola were diagnosed in Kabala, a community of approximately 25,000. The infected persons were immediately isolated and sent to treatment centers. The people exposed were isolated in a school building for 21 days to protect the rest of the community. No one died of Ebola in Kabala. Many miles away, on a border with a badly infected District, 90 cases of Ebola were detected with some deaths, but that outbreak was contained, and did not spread further into the District where Nar Sarah and Kabala is located.
Time Magazine named the Ebola fighters as Person of the Year in 2014. The donors in the Rocky Mountain area, and the health workers of Nar Sarah and Kabala can lay claim to that honor although this story will never be seen or heard. Congratulations. Your actions fulfilled the words found in Matthew 25:35-40
MISSION NEWS & OPPORTUNITIES
INDIVIDUAL VOLUNTEER TRAINING: Feb. 25-29, 2015 Colby Retreat Center, Palmdale, CA. If you are interested in serving as an individual or couple for 2 months to 3 years then please attend the upcoming IV training at the beautiful Colby Retreat Center in Palmdale, CA. Please contact Rev. Dr. Malcolm Frazier at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and an application.
2nd ANNUAL WJ DISASTER ACADEMY: Are you interested in learning about to be a caring Christian presence in the face of a disaster? Would you like to be trained and certified by UMCOR in partnership with UMVIM to serve your local community or nationally when disaster hits? Then come to the WJ Disaster Academy March 2-5, 2015 in Denver, CO. Paul Jeffery (pictured above) will be our guest speaker. Please register and visit www.rmumc.org to register and see a list of available classes and events! You can also just scroll down this website to find out more information and links to the Rocky Mountain Conference website to register.
UMCOR WEST: Team looking for volunteers to join to serve at UMCOR West Depot in Salt Lake City March 15-20, 2015. The team will only be a team of 10 people. Please contact Fe Balaoing at email@example.com if you are interested in joining. Fe is based in Bothell, WA.
Mazatenango, Guatemala: July 24-August 2, 2015: The 2011 Guatemala team worked in the south western area of Guatemala. We were based in the city of Mazatenango and traveled to three different villages which were 1-2 hours away. The purpose of the mission was to provide for basic medical needs and to counsel villagers on nutrition, boiling water etc. The kinds of medical issues we saw varied from malnutrition to intestinal parasites and fungal infections. The number of patients seen ranged from 500-600. We took with us not only the medications we used but also health kits (filled with soaps, toothbrushes and toothpaste) and school supplies. Please contact Phil Bandy for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Haiti, Spring Break Youth Mission Trip April 4-11, 2015: This mission of the youth is to be involved in community computer classes, build and install Bio-Sand water filter systems for water purification. This mission is part of an ongoing community education program and this mission will operate in two school communities. You will be in ministry and mission with TFP staff. They will be your guides, cooks and interpreters during your mission. They are well experienced in handling teams and are equipped to make your mission safe and enjoyable. For more information please contact Phil Bandy at email@example.com or visit http://www.cnumc.org/vimtrips for a listing of all the upcoming mission opportunities out of the Cal-Nevada Conference.
Honduras Team Leader Lou Altman is currently seeking additional team members for a mission opportunity to Honduras at the Limon Clinic. The team will be hosting medical and public health clinics. Physicians and others in the medical field are certainly in need, though anyone with a heart to serve and willingness to get their hands dirty are more than welcome! The cost is $1600 and covers all expenses except meals in transit and a free day activity. For more information, please contact Lou at
|July 17-26, 2015. An UMVIM medical mission team from Roanoke, VA is currently forming a team to serve in Guatemala with Boca Costa Medical Missions. They are seeking dentists and medical professionals, as well as other non-medical personnel. For more information, please contact Anita Gooding at|
May 10-18, 2015 and early September 2015: Carolina Honduras Health Foundation clinic in Limón, Honduras, hosts 18 volunteer medical mission teams each year at their clinic on the Caribbean coast. A team leader is needed for May 10-18 and September 2015. Medical training is not required for the team leader; organizational skills are a plus. Assistance in all aspects of planning for a mission team will be provided. Individual
teams throughout the year need doctors, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, nurses, EMT's, pharmacists and general volunteers. If interested, please contact Ken atkenhook@CFFH.org.
|Wanted: Adventurous Accountant|
Are you an accountant by day and Indiana Jones by night? ODIM Guatemala is seeking an accountant with a spirit to serve with them in-country for 2-4 weeks. You will have the chance to live and work short term with a dynamic mission team in a lovely location. They request for you to come down with a budget sufficient to cover your expenses and work with their Business Manager and Executive Director to improve their accounting systems and protocols. For more information, please contact Jeff Hassel at firstname.lastname@example.org.
College Students: Apply for Summer Staff with ARM! Looking for a transformative summer mission opportunity? They hire 16-20 college students every year to serve as summer staff at their youth mission camps in rural Alabama. They have positions for coordinating home repair projects and positions for loving on kids at day camp. Both come with $1700 scholarships. Contact Joe (email@example.com) or visit them online (www.arm-al.org/summerstaff) for details!
Summer Youth Mission Camp: Looking for a place for your middle or high school students to serve others this summer? Registration for ARM's mission camp 2015 is now open! Join them in June or July for a week of service through home repair and day camp ministry. You will care for families and kids and learn about the realities of poverty in rural Alabama. Worship, pray, and study together about how God is calling you to lead a life of service. Contact Joe (firstname.lastname@example.org) or visit them online (www.arm-al.org/summercamp) to register!