As South Sudan prepares for official independence next week, WoC’s primary health care partner, IMA World Health, is busy working with the South Sudanese government to increase access to essential health care for millions of people. IMA, supported by WoC, is proud to be playing such a key role in advancing health in this new nation.
IMA’s Sudanese staff is working hard to help bring health care services to the people of South Sudan, but conditions are difficult and safe housing is in short supply. Please keep our IMA colleagues and partners on the ground in Sudan in your prayers and thoughts. For more information on how your WoC gifts are at work in the Sudan, visit IMA’s website. It is a privilege to be a part of this critical work during this time of exciting but uncertain transition in the history of Sudan.
Missouri River Flooding
As we move into summer, numerous communities have been devastated or impacted by severe storms and flooding throughout the Missouri River drainage area. States impacted include Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska and Missouri. The city most impacted is Minot, on the Souris River (also called Mouse River) in western North Dakota. In this town of 36,000 people, over 12,000 have been evacuated from homes that are now sitting in over 6 feet of flood water.
Reconstruction of damaged and failed levees is not expected to be completed until mid-July, when water levels are expected to recede. An additional 1,000 people have been evacuated in Ward County, where Minot is located. Other towns affected in this area are Sawyer and Velva, ND. In Iowa, 1200 people have been evacuated from the town of Hamburg as the Missouri River tops the last levee protecting the town. In Council Bluffs, IA, the levee is still holding, but mandatory evacuations are in effect due to the rise of interior ground water behind the levee system.
The flooding in the Missouri River Valley will continue throughout the summer as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers releases water from the Gavin’s Point Dam in SD and five other dams that are filled to capacity. Missouri River levels are expected to remain about 6 feet above flood stage in Nebraska and Iowa and as much as 10 feet above flood stage in Missouri. As the continued high water stresses the levee system to the point of failure, more communities will be flooded.
Our primary implementing partner, Church World Service, has already shipped 200 Emergency Clean-up Buckets to South Dakota. More are needed. To assemble Clean-up Buckets, please visit here. More requests are being processed, and many more requests for material goods are anticipated, as the waters recede in July and people return to their homes and begin the muck-out and clean-up process.
In addition, CWS Emergency Response Specialists are monitoring the many situations and remain in contact with federal, state, local and voluntary agencies. The Emergency Response Specialists are also in communication with churches and faith-based organizations to assist them in organizing immediate and long-term assistance. CWS will be considerably involved in the long-term recovery process in the damaged communities. CWS has worked with agencies in the affected areas in the past to establish and train long-term recovery groups, and these efforts will continue. CWS will be in contact with state, regional and local Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD) partners to determine where needs exist for training and disaster recovery project development.
Thank you for your courageous compassion—it enables us to respond, each and every day, to people in need, such as these communities close to us along the Missouri River region but also in places as far away as Sudan. Praise be to God!
Compassion Hall of Fame
Join us at the Country Music Hall of Fame on Sunday, July 10 for an Open House from 5:30 pm – midnight! Visit the “Compassion Hall of Fame” as you enjoy light fare, good fellowship, and meet the people who help us accomplish all we do around the world, thanks to your gifts. For tickets, visit here.
See you there! We give thanks for your partnership.