Mormon Newsroom
News Release

Relief Society in Action, August 20, 2020

Relief Society in Action highlights the volunteer service of Latter-day Saint women in their communities around the world. The Relief Society is the women’s organization of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It has more than 7.1 million members and is the largest women’s organization in the world.

Sisters Help Sew and Donate More Than 3 Million Face Masks (Brazil)

Members of the Relief Society in Brazil helped sew more than 3 million reusable face masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“For a long time, I have wanted to do volunteer work and help people in need. I am very happy and pleased to be able to help others with my sewing skills. If each one does a little bit, together we can get out of this very difficult moment,” said Marieta Sogari Picoloto, a volunteer seamstress from Pelotas, Brazil.

 

When the Brazil Area Presidency challenged Latter-day Saints throughout the country to help create masks, hundreds of Relief Society sisters and their families joined the cause to combat the virus.

The relief project, called Help Preserve Lives, was organized by Helping Hands. More than 20,000 Latter-day Saints and friends of the faith in Brazil volunteered.

Over three months, sisters in Brazil sewed, cut, packed and distributed the masks. The face masks were donated to families, hospitals, charities and governmental health and support agencies.

Estaca Ponta Negra Natal Brasil

NATAL (RN) - A Estaca Ponta Negra Natal de A Igreja de Jesus Cristo dos Santos dos Últimos Dias encerrou sua participação no programa #MãosQueAjudamAPreservarVidas realizando a doação de 3400 máscaras para o Hospital João Machado, que estar com UTIs para tratamento de casos de COVID-19.

Posted by Mãos que Ajudam on Thursday, July 2, 2020

A Facebook post by Helping Hands in Brazil shows Relief Society sisters and their families working together to sew 3,400 face masks, which were later donated to the João Machado hospital.

“I thank the Church for trusting me and allowing me to help. I’m working to produce more and more masks,” said Picoloto.

Because of the ongoing pandemic, many sisters had more time on their hands to help create the masks.

“In addition to being able to help people, I felt very useful sewing because I was idle at home. It was very edifying,” said Aparecida Moreno, a volunteer from Ribeirão Preto, Brazil.

Help Preserve Lives is a part of the Church’s global effort to combat COVID-19.

Read more about the initiative on Newsroom in English or Portuguese.

Beanies and Scarves Warm Orphaned Children (Pacific)

The Relief Society of the Gold Coast Australia Stake created homemade beanies and scarves, and donated them to the Pu Pu Khin Foundation for Poorest Orphanages in Myanmar, a southeast country in Asia.

Scarves and Beanies for orphaned children in Myanmar
Gold Coast Stake President Daniel Shine, with Penny Owen, the Stake Relief Society President donate beanies and scarves to Carolyn Tierney, President of the Pu Pu Khin Foundation for Orphanages in Myanmar© 2020 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.
                                        

“The orphanages we support are not government funded and only survive on the generosity of people’s donations, like this,” said Carolyn Tierney, president of the foundation.

The organization helps children in the poorest orphanages in Myanmar and provides money to purchase medicine. It also provides clothing, food and bedding.

Click here to read the full Newsroom article.

Self-Reliance Course Taught at Tahiti Women’s Shelter (Pacific)

Miresa Doom, a Relief Society representative at the French Polynesia Women’s Council, organized a self-reliance course for women at the Pu o te Hau women’s shelter.

                                      

The French Polynesia Women’s Council — representing 13 women’s associations, including the Relief Society — manages the shelter for women who are victims of domestic violence.

The program focused on teaching mothers how to help their children succeed in school. Participants shared their experiences and discussed several meaningful ways to raise children at home.

“Above all the concepts presented, what matters most is that this first course especially allowed the participants to reconnect with God,” commented Manea Tuahu, director of the Church’s Self-Reliance and Welfare Department in French Polynesia.

Read more about the initiative on Pacific Newsroom.

Hats for Babies Come Full Circle (Canada)

A group of Relief Society sisters in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, knitted and crocheted nearly 75 hats for newborn children at the Ottawa Hospital.

                              

“A nurse from the Ottawa Hospital … posted [in the free-exchange group] a request for knitters to make hats for newborns. Their supply was very short,” said Anne-Marie Johnson, a Relief Society sister of the Ottawa Ontario Stake. “I messaged her, said that the ladies in my church might be able to help and then I posted a request on Facebook.”

One recipient was Jayda Gail Lucille Ondaye, who was born three weeks early.

“While this is not one of the hats I personally knitted, I’m so happy to see that my great-niece was the recipient of one of our hats,” said Freda Booth, a member of the Chapel Hill Ward Relief Society and one of the knitters from the Church.

Click here to read more about the hat donations.

New Zealand Woman Crochets Blankets for Friends During Pandemic (Pacific)

Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, many are finding time to serve others. Kahuwaero Katene, an 89-year-old Relief Society sister in Wellington, New Zealand, relearned how to crochet and made several blankets for her friends.

Wellington, New Zealand resident, Kahuwaero Katene relearned how to crochet a wool blanket during the COVID-19 lockdown. July 2020.
Wellington, New Zealand resident, Kahuwaero Katene relearned how to crochet a wool blanket during the COVID-19 lockdown. July 2020.© 2020 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.
                     

Katene struggled to relearn how to crochet, but after several tries, she succeeded.

“Doing something for others is uplifting. It gives me satisfaction and makes me feel good about others,” said Katene.

Read about Katene and her service project on the Pacific Newsroom.

French Polynesian Women Mask Their Faces, Not Their Hearts

Sisters helped sew and donated 2,100 masks for students returning to school in Punaauia, French Polynesia, on August 8, 2020.

A member of the Relief Society, presents protective masks for the children to the principal of Punaauia Junior High School. French Polynesia, August 2020.
A member of the Relief Society, presents protective masks for the children to the principal of Punaauia Junior High School. French Polynesia, August 2020.© 2020 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.
                

When local community leaders asked the Church to help create masks, Relief Society sisters turned the project into a challenge and hoped to deliver the masks before the school year began.

“It was a pleasure to give these masks to the students. This challenging project brought more unity, love and joy,” said Dolorès Vanaa, stake Relief Society coordinator.

Several women brought their sewing machines to the local church building and worked on the masks together.

“The students will really need them for the start of the school year, because it is important to wear masks with the confirmation of new positive cases,” said Deputy Mayor Jean-Pierre Ching. “I especially congratulate the mothers for their organization, their time and their talents invested in this project.”

Click here to read the full article.

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