International Disaster Response
When a natural or human-caused disaster strikes outside of the United States, the United Methodist Committee of Relief International Disaster Response program (UMCOR IDR) serves as the primary channel for United Methodist assistance. Response includes support for displaced people as well as refugees fleeing disasters in the form of food, water, hygiene and other essential nonfood supplies and temporary shelter. Long-term, UMCOR cooperates with church leaders and local organizations to develop response mechanisms and to support local relief and recovery efforts.
UMCOR focuses on disasters that overwhelm a local community’s ability to respond, such as storms and flooding, fires, volcanoes, war and civil unrest.
Partners working with UMCOR select beneficiaries based on need and vulnerability as opposed to any other category (such as gender, race or religion).
Building global capacity
Among United Methodist communities in Africa and the Philippines, UMCOR resources Disaster Management Offices (DMOs) and accompanies, trains and equips other Methodist and faith-based partners. These efforts strengthen churches to carry out disaster response, recovery and risk mitigation activities in their own communities.
Typical emergency response efforts include the distribution of food, hygiene supplies and facilities, nonfood items, psychosocial support and shelter. Once the immediate danger has passed, higher-level recovery activities may include projects to increase livelihoods, food security, education and other areas of recovery.
Mitigation activities encompass community-based contingency planning in which community members utilize their experience and local expertise to adapt and prepare for future disasters. This work includes infrastructure and physical adaptations that may help prevent and decrease the severity of disasters.
UMCOR and its partners are responding to disasters around the world every day.
As human attempts to stop the war in Gaza continue, Palestinians ask Christians to pray, believing that God will find a way forward even when the path is not clear.
UMCOR’s grant to the Methodist Church of Mexico is assisting communities in Acapulco devastated by October 2023’s Hurricane Otis.
Communities affected by Cyclone Freddy are receiving agricultural training and equipment and reconstruction of infrastructure with the help of an UMCOR grant.