commitment to Haiti relief efforts to $2.25 million, up from an initial pledge of $1 million. The Rev. John Nunes, LWR’s president and CEO, said the increase is “thanks to the overwhelming generosity of U.S. Lutherans in the face of this disaster.”
LWR increased the number based on early fundraising returns, including pledges from both the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and The Lutheran Church — Missouri Synod, and a member match from Thrivent Financial for Lutherans.
LWR is working with partners on the ground to ensure people have food, water and shelter. LWR has also sent a shipment of health kits and layettes, and is mobilizing more resources for future shipments. LWR partners active on the ground include Action by Churches Together members Lutheran World Federation, Church World Service, Norwegian Church Aid and Christian Aid.
LWR is also planning for a longer-term response of at least three to five years, focusing mainly on underserved rural areas outside Port-au-Prince. The earthquake also affected many of these areas, and even those communities that did not sustain damage in the quake will be strained by the anticipated migration of hundreds of thousands of people leaving the Port-au-Prince area.
”The needs are great, and they will continue to be great for a long while,” Nunes said. “LWR is known for being in it for the long haul – remaining with affected communities long after the media and other aid agencies have moved on. We were already working in Haiti before the quake, and we will be walking with these communities for years to come as they work to rebuild their lives.”
To donate to the relief effort, please visit www.lwr.org, call 1-800-597-5972, or mail a check or money order to Lutheran World Relief, PO Box 17061, Baltimore, MD 21298-9832 USA. You can also make an immediate $10 donation by texting “LWR” to 40579.
WHO IS LWR? Lutheran World Relief, an international nonprofit organization, works to end poverty and injustice by empowering some of the world’s most impoverished communities to help themselves. With partners in 35 countries, LWR seeks to promote sustainable development with justice and dignity by helping communities bring about change for healthy, safe and secure lives; engage in Fair Trade; promote peace and reconciliation; and respond to emergencies. LWR is headquartered in Baltimore, Md. and has worked in international development and relief since 1945.
Lutheran World Relief is a ministry of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod (LCMS), individuals and parish groups in international relief, development, advocacy and social responsibility.