Over the weekend, Vineyard’s i-61 Ministries published a cry for help from two Sierra Leone Vineyard churches who are in the middle of the battle against Ebola. Interestingly enough, the biggest problem isn’t the Ebola virus itself… no, the biggest problem is that the Ebola quarantine has created a shortage of food, clean water, and other health-related needs such as being able to look for protective masks and procure them for the both the infected and uninfected.
“The situation in Sierra Leone is so desperate that most people are not even allowed to leave their homes, being severely quarantined in a government effort to stop the spread of the virus. There are today as many people dying from starvation, malaria and other diseases as are dying from Ebola due to this quarantine, something the West is little aware of. People are not even allowed to leave their homes to visit farms outside of Freetown, the capital, in order to obtain food to eat. When people die in their homes, even the corpses are not allowed to be removed!”
Patrick Obumselu, a 50-year old bio-vocational Vineyard pastor in Nigeria, has stepped up to the plate and is trying to help folks in Sierra Leone, whom he has known for over 12-years. According to him, the greatest needs at the moment are:
- Food and lots of it
- Sanitary products: sanitary napkins, diapers, and other personal hygiene products
- Baby formula and food. Many babies have had both parents die from Ebola and are in desperate need
How to help
Vineyard Missions USA is currently taking donation to fill a shipping container with food, sanitary products, and medical supplies that will then been shipped to the Sierra Leone churches. Shipping containers are a great way to ensure that large quantities of donations can reach an intended destination without getting damaged. However, to ensure that the donations arrive safely, the charity might also have to purchase a ramp and other shipping container accessories from a shipping container website similar to Conexwest. Above all, a shipping container ramp should ensure that all donations are able to be safely packaged and offloaded. If you want to join this effort, please donate online or mail your contributions to:
Vineyard Missions USA
112 North Harvard Ave. #265
Claremont, CA 91711
In addition to donating funds, Patrick has also asked plead for folks to pray for the people of Sierra Leone, their survival, and the removal of any roadblocks that may keep food containers from arriving by Christmas.
If you want to know more about i-61 Ministries involvement in the Ebola crisis, check out their post here. You can also read a letter from the Vineyard Makeni in Sierra Leone about the crisis and what God is doing there.