News Articles

IMB trustees to consider extra funding for hurricane relief

RICHMOND, Va. (BP)–Because the horrific destruction caused by Hurricane Mitch in Central America requires an all-out relief response, trustees of the Southern Baptist International Mission Board will consider a plan for over-and-above relief funding during a meeting Nov. 16-18 in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Trustee Chairman Bill Sutton of McAllen, Texas, will ask trustees to set aside “a major amount of money” from board reserves to facilitate emergency response to the October disaster, which killed at least 11,000 people, forced about 3 million from their homes and devastated agriculture and business in the region.
As of Nov. 12, the board’s disaster relief fund was down to $21,773.54 — woefully inadequate to the challenges ahead. In addition to Central America, missionaries also are engaged in major disaster relief efforts in Bangladesh and the Caribbean.
Southern Baptist missionaries are working with Baptist pastors in Honduras, and 61 churches have been set up as feeding stations. A cargo plane loaded with food relief purchased with $178,000 of Southern Baptist hunger funds is scheduled to leave the week of Nov. 16 for Honduras. That will meet emergency requests filed by missionaries for projects that will feed 6,000 people for one week. Another $35,000 was released for food aid in Nicaragua.
A full report on the board decision is expected to be released Nov. 19.