Grants Support BDM Project Site in New Jersey, War Recovery in Gaza, Ebola Response in Liberia

The Brethren Disaster Ministries staff is directing a total of $54,000 from the Church of the Brethren Emergency Disaster Fund (EDF) to the disaster rebuilding project at Toms River, N.J., war recovery work by the Shepherd Society in Gaza, and the fight against the spread of Ebola in Liberia.

An allocation of $40,000 continue funding for a Brethren Disaster Ministries rebuilding project in Toms River, N.J., following devastation caused by Superstorm Sandy in Oct. 2012. The ministry is partnering with O.C.E.A.N., Inc., which is providing the land to build six single family homes in Berkeley Township, N.J. The new homes, to be managed and maintained by O.C.E.A.N., Inc., will be rented on a sliding scale to low- and moderate-income families with special needs who also were affected by Super Storm Sandy.

Currently construction of the first three homes is being completed, and construction on three more homes is expected to begin as soon as the foundations are laid. Brethren Disaster Ministries anticipates the response in this region to expand to include more new homes as well.

A grant of $10,000 has been given to the Shepherd Society to aid in war recovery efforts in Gaza following a 50-day war between Gaza and Israel. The Shepherd Society has a goal to help 1,000 Gazan families with a minimum of $200 per family. The Brethren grant will provide humanitarian assistance to 50 families devastated by the war, providing food, medicine, and supplies including blankets, mattresses, and gas bottles, as well as rent for displaced families.

A grant of $4,000 to Church Aid in Liberia continues the Brethren Disaster Ministries response to the worst Ebola outbreak in history. The Church of the Brethren has partnered with Church Aid in Liberia in the past through grants for humanitarian assistance, agriculture support, and reconstruction after the civil war. Also, Global Food Crisis Fund grants have been given for seeds and agricultural inputs. Today Church Aid is working to educate the public about Ebola to help prevent the continued spread of the disease. This grant provides funds for training, travel expenses, and support of trainers working in Liberia.

A previous grant of $15,000 was given in August to an IMA World Health appeal for support of Ebola health workers in Liberia, through the Christian Health Association of Liberia.

To support Brethren Disaster Ministries and the Emergency Disaster Fund, go to www.brethren.org/edf .