24Apr2024

SCM Medical Missions

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Humanitarian AidJordanRefugeesSyria

More Donations Going to the Refugees in Jordan

One of the things we do to help as many people as possible is coordinate with other organizations. In Jordan, we have a warehouse that keeps all the goods we send over by container – all of your donations of clothing, blankets, medical equipment, etc. What we don’t have is a large staff and fleet of trucks to deliver the donations where they are needed all the time. Some items, like the food packages, are distributed from the warehouse, but sometimes we need to get them to a different location to distribute. Some items we take with the mission teams and distribute them then, but that is only every couple of months, and our mission vans are pretty tightly packed with supplies and mission volunteers.

In order to get more of these donations out to the people in need, we work with other local organizations in Jordan who come and take the donations to a camp or village they work with and distribute the items there. We ensure the organization is legitimate and know where the items are going, so we know they are going to people in need. We have posted some photos before of two other organizations picking up a truckload of goods from the warehouse but didn’t really explain what was happening, other than the donations were being distributed.

The pictures in this post are of two Jordanian organization  – Umm Rassas and the Orthodox Church of Madaba – picking up a load of clothing and supplies and taking them to another town where they will be distributed to the local population of refugees. The refugees are Syrian, Palestinian, and Iraqi. Umm Rassas distributed the goods to 400 families and the church distributed to 100 families.

This particular load of donations came from the Maram Foundation of Houston, TX. They loaded a container and we split the shipping cost with them to send it to Jordan and are storing the items in our warehouse there until they are distributed.

JordanLebanonRefugeesSyria

Extreme Winter Weather Hitting Refugees Hard

This is the second time this year that the Syrian refugees in Jordan and Lebanon have been hit hard by the severe winter weather.  During the first two weeks of January 2015 extreme weather conditions for the region hit hard with high winds, and freezing cold in the evenings. Heavy snowfall has collapsed tents, forcing the refugees to find other shelter, which is hard to do.  After the snow started to melt there was flooding of the tents and the portable buildings that were put right on the ground.  The refugees lost a lot of what meager belongings they had that were ruined by the water, including mattresses, clothing, food, etc. Some of that was replaced from NGOs and volunteers, but certainly not all.

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February came along and the cold weather returned again, with snow and ice and high wind conditions.  Tens of thousands of refugees are living in the camps and other in makeshift shelters across the region and they are not able to keep their families warm.  Some have kerosene heaters, but with the high winds and the snow collapsing the tents, it is very dangerous.  We have had numerous reports of children being burnt by kerosene heaters in the tents.

snow-lebanon2

We sent two containers from Seattle in late December, one of which arrived and was distributed; the other one has not arrived yet due to the delays caused by the labor dispute at the west coast ports. We have received word that the second container should be arriving by the 27th of February, but a third container we just recently filled has been sitting on the dock for the last two weeks due to the dispute.  I am not sure when the labor dispute will end and the container will be loaded on a ship and on its way to Jordan, but once it does it will take about a month to get to Jordan if there are no more delays.  Rita is leaving on March 13th for another medical mission and could really use your help with funding to buy the needed goods there for the families affected by the recent severe winter weather.

A lot of you have sent us donations of warm clothing, but they are stuck at the port and we need to get items to keep these families warm.  Fuel for heating will be purchased for the families to keep them warm in the evenings.  Solar powered lanterns have been ordered so the kids can read and do some studying at night instead of sitting in the dark (the sun goes down at 5:30pm). We also want to buy them some books and school supplies. All of these items are stuck in transit. We also want to buy them food at $31 for a month’s worth of food for a family of 5.

If everyone can just reach deep into their pockets again, you can help us help the refugees who are in dire need right now.  Rita will take the cash with her and purchase these items in Jordan and we will post pictures of what we have purchased and how we were able to distribute it.

Please go to our web site www.salaamculturalmuseum.org and click on the donate button now.

Thank you.

SCM Team

Humanitarian AidJordanRefugeesSyriaUncategorized

Children’s Art Raises Funds for Children’s Center

Two of our past mission participants, Omar and Jasser Kassab from Switzerland, took some of the paintings done by children at the children’s  center while they were there, framed them, then auctioned them off in Switzerland. They created an NGO called Syrian Refugee Crisis to collect the funds. It was a huge success and they raised a large sum of money which they then donated to the Malki-SCM Children’s Center. Thank you Omar and Jasser!

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Humanitarian AidJordanMedical AidRefugees

Mission: Day 1 Rehab/AL Mafraq

This is a post from our November mission that for some reason is showing as not posted, so here it is again, just in case.
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Today we visited a new location in a village where refugees are living, and they have had no medical services until now. After our meeting this morning we set off in vans that were so full of people and supplies, they were all riding pretty low. After about an hour’s drive we arrived at the village and found the place where we were to set up. It was kind of a community center, with 3 storeys, meeting rooms, and rooms for parties or weddings. We unloaded the vans and set up the dental, pharmacy, and general doctors on one floor, and the OB-GYN, psych, and humanitarian teams on another. Only a few people were there when we first arrived, but it didn’t take long for the waiting area to fill up and the triage/intake tables were inundated with people needing medical attention. At the humanitarian section, it was the same. People who had nothing were desperate to get anything- hats, gloves, blankets, toiletries. The children were so eager to get even a small toy and some pencils. We had several older children who came up, and seemed to be trying to get additional items,  but then we were able to get them to help us get a little order and help the smaller children in line. By the time we were done giving out all of the supplies we were being entertained by a few of the cheekier boys with their “moon walk” and funny photo faces.

The experience of today has just reinforced how much need there is and how much the Syrians are doing without. There are no more luxury items to be had, even face cream for women is something they were asking us about, and unfortunately we didn’t have any with us. It seems like such a small thing, but imagine having nothing and depending on others even for the most basic things. A small tube of face moisturizer takes on a whole new dimension in this context. It would be nice to be able to offer the women this small thing in light of how big a burden they now shoulder. Many are widows, raising their children on their own, trying to provide for them. The traditional family support system for the Syrians has been completely ripped apart, and having things like face cream and hand cream won’t solve their problems, but for just a few minutes, it can make them feel better and keep the world and it’s bitter realities at bay.