News Release

Latter-day Saints Around the World: Country Newsroom Websites, October 8, 2020 

Newsroom features stories from its dozens of Newsroom websites around the world to show what members and leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are doing to better serve their communities. Today we feature news from the Middle East, Colombia, the United States, Italy, South Korea and the Republic of Congo.  


Middle East: Nearly 2,000 Displaced Families Receive Aid After Major Flooding

Latter-day Saint Charities, in partnership with Rahma Worldwide for Aid and Development, has sent aid to nearly 2,000 families displaced by major flooding in Aden, Yemen. The floods, which occurred earlier this year, killed over 100 people and displaced more than 160,000. The Middle East Newsroom (English) lists kitchenware, cooking fuel, bedding and 125 tents among the donated items.

Colombia: Church Donates Ventilators for COVID-19 Patients

The Church donated 10 mechanical ventilators imported from South Korea to the intensive care unit at the San Rafael de Fusagasugá Hospital, to aid patients battling COVID-19. The Colombia Newsroom (Spanish) reports that the donation was coordinated by Church representatives, the Ministry of Health and Social Protection, the Government of Cundinamarca and the Municipal Mayor's Office.

"This is a step to begin to improve the capacities of Hospital San Rafael de Fusagasugá," said Jairo Hortua, the mayor of Fusagasugá. "With this, little by little, we are able to increase our capacity to face this very difficult pandemic, not only in Colombia, but throughout the world."


United States: Church Ships Over 500,000 Pounds of Food to Aid Oregon Fire Victims

Fourteen humanitarian truck deliveries of food from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints were donated to 16 Oregon food agencies to help after the recent wildfires and pandemic. The deliveries of nearly 584,000 pounds of canned goods from the bishops’ storehouse to help those in need took place during September. To learn more about this donation, click here.

Italy: Free, Private Shopping Made Available for Poverty-Stricken Families

Poor families in Municipality III of Rome can now receive essentials in the privacy of a new emporium. The store was inaugurated on Tuesday, September 8, by municipality officials. It offers free goods and is the result of collaborative efforts of the Church, Civil Protection and the Red Cross.

The Church was “a major contributor to the initiative,” states the Italy Newsroom (Italian). “We are happy to have been able to contribute to the opening of the solidarity emporium of Municipality III … and to safeguard the dignity of people in need,” said Elder Alessandro Dini Ciacci, an area leader for the Church.


United States: Food Donations Sent to Those Impacted by Fires in California

In mid-September, nearly 250 Latter-day Saints in Northern California helped assemble 1,500 boxes of food for people impacted by the Oroville Fire. Once assembled, the boxes were donated to the Oroville Hope Center, a nonprofit Christian outreach organization that provides food, clothing and resources to Butte County’s most vulnerable community members. To read about this donation, click here.

South Korea: Helping Hands Assist Flood Victims

In mid-August, over 50 Helping Hands volunteers provided disaster cleanup plans and assistance for an area in northern Chungcheongbuk-do, Korea. The community sustained massive damage during heavy rainfall, including loss of houses and roads to landslides. In an interview with the Korea Newsroom (Korean), a victim of the flooding said, “Thanks to the service of Helping Hands, I gained great strength and courage. I will try to grow [my] farm again as before.”

Republic of the Congo: Church Donates Medical Equipment Valued at $60,000 (USD)

In mid-September and on behalf of the Church, Jean-Luc L. Magre, president of the Republic of Congo Brazzaville Mission, presented a donation of personal protective equipment (PPE), medical supplies, electrocardiogram (EKG) monitors and other equipment valued around $60,000 (USD). The DR Congo Newsroom (French) reports that Jacqueline Lydia Mikolo, the honorable minister of health, population, promotion of women and integration of women in development, accepted the donation.

“We greatly appreciate this gesture,” said Hon. Mikolo. “We thank all the faithful [and] all your partners who have contributed to this.”

Cemetery cleanup in Columbia, Maryland
The results from the restoration efforts of community volunteers are documented in 'before' and 'after' photographs of a 138-year-old headstone at the Dorsey-Owings-Waters Cemetery in Columbia, Maryland. The stone reads: Larkin Dorsey, Died Aug. 8, 1882, In the 38 year of his age.© 2020 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.

United States: Debris Cleared and Headstones Restored at Local Cemetery

In Columbia, Maryland, a Latter-day Saint family, the Feagins, initiated an extensive cleanup project of the Dorsey-Owings-Waters Cemetery. “There was trash from the [local] restaurant, fast-food wrappers, trash, dead animals [and] debris everywhere,” said James Feagin. “Several headstones were buried under two to three feet of vines and the grass hadn’t been mowed.”

The Feagins invited neighborhood friends and a youth group from their congregation to assist in the effort. Together they cleared more than 300 pounds of trash and spent hundreds of dollars on tools and supplies. They also researched ways to safely clean and restore headstones. Over the course of this six-month project, graves of an unnamed woman and three children have been uncovered. Headstones for two Civil War soldiers and an abolitionist credited with freeing 23 slaves were also identified.

“The past six months have been a true labor of love,” said Feagin. “It has brought our family closer together, and we have always felt that we were in a holy place. [We feel] we were called by Heavenly Father to look after this sacred site. We speak of these people who rest at Dorsey-Owings-Waters like they are our friends. We have grown to love them.”

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