|Children in Central Sulawesi using soap from hygiene kits provided by ACT Indonesia. © Simon Chambers/ACT.|
This year we aim to support two ecumenical disaster preparedness and response networks, and fund meetings with Anglican partners to strengthen the development advocacy and disaster response work of the Anglican Alliance.
You hear about a devastating cyclone on the other side of the Indian Ocean, affecting the Southern African nation of Mozambique – a country most Australians don’t usually give a lot of thought to. You see television footage of homes and livelihoods being destroyed, whole villages being washed away. You’d like to help. You notice that ABM has an appeal for assisting the response to this emergency. You give. But you’d like to know more about how the money gets there, how it will help.
One of the reasons ABM is able to respond to disasters in countries like Mozambique is because we are connected into the world-wide Anglican family through the Anglican Alliance (for Development, Relief and Advocacy). When Cyclone Idai made landfall in Mozambique as a Category 2 storm last March (and a month later was followed by Cyclone Kenneth), the Anglican Alliance quickly mobilised its members working in Mozambique. It also made contact with bishops in the dioceses of Lebombo and Niassa and other representatives of the Anglican Church in Mozambique (part of the Anglican Church of Southern Africa) to see how best to coordinate an Anglican response.*
Because we are part of the Anglican Alliance, ABM was able to send its supporters’ donations to Mozambique via the UK-based United Society (USPG). These funds were then joined with other funds and goods donated by members of the Anglican Church in Mozambique itself, and by other world-wide Anglican relief agencies, to make a real impact in helping those who had lost everything.
Meanwhile, closer to home in Vanuatu, ABM’s partner, the Anglican Church of Melanesia, is participating in training in disaster preparedness so that it can help its members prepare for and be resilient in the frequent cyclone emergencies that affect that country. Running this training is CAN DO, the Australian Church Agencies’ Network Disaster Operations. The aim is not just to help one or two churches, but to strengthen the ability of many local Vanuatu church networks to prepare for and respond to disasters in a coordinated and cooperative way.
And in parts of the world where neither CAN DO nor the Anglican Alliance normally operate, such as Indonesia, ABM is able to work with yet another network, Action by Churches Together (ACT) Alliance.
Through ACT, ABM is able to respond in a coordinated way to disasters such as the tsunami that hit the Indonesian island of Sulawesi in September, 2018. ABM’s supporters contributed just over AUD20,000, and these funds were able to be added to funds received by other ACT partners to benefit over 12,000 people affected by the disaster. The successful response was organised by ACT members based locally.
All of these networks operate through secretariats, and it is ABM’s contribution to supporting those secretariats that needs your support, via our General Community Development Fund.
The General Community Development Fund also enabled ABM and its Papua New Guinea partner to participate in a Climate Change Advocacy workshop in Bangkok last year, organised by ACT Alliance. This workshop gave both ABM and our PNG partner strengthened knowledge and understanding of the significance of climate change to sustainable development, and equipped us to better contribute to climate risk management.
Please consider supporting this vital fund.
Other ways in which this fund supports the work of ABM include:
In 2020 the General Community Development Fund needs $140,000 (tax-deductible)
Gifts to ABM will be applied to the support of project(s) selected. In the unlikely event of the project being oversubscribed or not proceeding to completion, donations will be applied to a similar project to the one(s) selected.
*An Anglican response to an emergency is one that is started and managed by local Anglicans, and is committed to helping the most affected people who may or may not be Anglicans themselves.
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