United Church Launches Emergency Appeal for the Philippines

TORONTO, Nov. 12, 2013 /CNW/ - The United Church of Canada has issued a church-wide appeal for donations in response to the super typhoon that devastated much of the Philippines on November 8. Funds donated will be distributed to United Church partners in the Philippines and ACT Alliance for relief and reconstruction efforts.

The Canadian government has said it will match, dollar for dollar, donations to registered Canadian charities, including the United Church, made between November 9 and December 8. Registered charities will be able to apply to the government's Typhoon Haiyan Relief Fund to augment relief projects in the Philippines, although there is no guarantee that any project or charity will receive funding from the government's fund.

The United Church of Christ in the Philippines (UCCP) is one of The United Church of Canada's long-time partners in the region. UCCP has started to survey the damage brought by the typhoon in identified disaster areas in Leyte, including Tacloban.

"Tacloban is like a no man's land," lamented Bishop Dulce Pia-Rose of the UCCP East Visayas Jurisdictional Area, a few days after she led a team of UCCP disaster responders that arrived in the city. "My heart sank upon seeing the dead bodies lying in the streets and were beginning to decompose and the despair painted on the faces of hungry survivors that we met."

The National Council of Churches in the Philippines (NCCP) is another United Church partner that will serve as a key implementing agency of the international appeal.

Father Rex Reyes, General Secretary of the NCCP, recently in Canada visiting the United Church, says the NCCP "has launched an immediate response by dispatching basic necessities of food and water, has rapid assessment teams in the field making assessments of how to best direct needed support to affected communities, and has already began the process of planning its long term response effort."

To donate to The United Church of Canada's emergency appeal for the Philippines, please go to www.united-church.ca/haiyan.

SOURCE: United Church of Canada

For further information:

Mary-Frances Denis
The United Church of Canada
416-231-7680 ext. 2016
416-400-7273 (cell)

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