News Release

Church Donates Hygiene Kits in Zamboanga

Twelve thousand hygiene kits were donated by LDS Charities to families in Zamboanga City in answer to the plea of Mayor Ma. Isabelle Climaco, chairman of the Crisis Management Committee (CMC).

On September 9, about 200 rebels from a Misuari-led MNLF faction took Zamboanga City under siege using hostages as human shields and burning homes of residents.

The National Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) released figures showing that the siege left 140 dead, 268 wounded and around 120,000 residents from 15 barangays affected.  A total of 184 hostages were released last September 30.

Mormon Helping Hands (MHH) volunteers repacked the kits on September 25-26 at the Tetuan Stake (Diocese) Center and distributed it on the 27th at the Joaquin F. Enriquez Memorial Sports Complex (Grandstand) and to the different evacuation centers in Zamboanga City.

Many of the volunteers who responded lived far from the danger zone.  Despite continued gun fire exchanges and air strikes, MHH volunteers managed to reach the stake (diocese) center to join in the repacking. 

Hon. Myra Paz Abubakar, a city counselor in charge of receiving the donations, instructed Mormon Helping Hands volunteers to bring all hygiene kits to the Sanguniang Panglungsod building in Baliwasan.  In partnership with DSWD personnel, the kits were distributed the following day.

 Abubakar expressed her appreciation for the immediate response of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. RMN Station and U-Stream TV documented the initiative and recognized the timely response of the donation since hygiene kits were an immediate need during that time.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints provides relief and development projects for humanitarian purposes in countries all over the world. Projects operate without regard to the nationality or religion of the recipients.

Humanitarian service may include emergency response to natural disasters, such as an earthquake or a tsunami, or man-made disasters, such as the effects of war and famine. It may also be part of a longer-term effort to meet serious and more entrenched human needs, such as the need to alleviate disease.

Within hours of a disaster, the Church works with local government officials to determine what supplies and food are needed. Materials are then immediately sent to the area.

After urgent needs are met, the Church looks for additional ways to help with the long-term needs of the community. The Church’s approach is to help people become self-reliant by teaching skills and providing resources for a self-sustained life.

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