1st Quarter 2017 Update

The first 3 months of 2017 have come and gone. Once again the world suffered many natural disasters during this time. Month after month and year after year tornadoes, floods, hurricanes, wildfires and more wreak havoc on communities around the world. These disasters are one of the reasons we exist. To offer help. To offer hope. To show love. To share Christ by being his hands and feet.

In January CSI was able to send aid to the state of Georgia. We worked with a local pastor, Steve Waldron, after an EF3 tornado ravaged parts of Georgia, on January 22 as it tore through an almost 71-mile path through parts of five Georgia counties, to help purchase gift cards for families who needed help getting basics like, soap, shampoo, and toothpaste. While these may seem like small things to the average person you understand the importance of providing people the opportunity to get the items they are accustomed to using in the aftermath of these events. This is just another way of bringing comfort to those who have lost so much. So again, we want to thank you for every donation to help the people of Georgia.

 

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Pastor Waldron passing out gift cards. 

The month of February also brought a different kind of disaster. Wildfires in Chile. Thanks again to our generous donors we were able to send funding for the reconstruction of a home that was destroyed in the fire. Sometimes it might seem insignificant to only help one family when there are so many others who are suffering. What good is it really to help just that one? But the principal of helping even just one is something we see in scripture, Luke 15:4 tells us, “What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country, and go after the one that is lost, until he finds it?” ESV We read about this concept again just a few verses later when we hear the story about the woman with the lost coin. And then in verse 10 of Luke 15 we find out the real significance of just one, “In the same way, there is joy in the presence of God’s angels when even one sinner repents.” NLT  When you give to CSI you can know that your contribution is making a very personal difference in people’s lives. We are not always able to reach the masses like some larger organizations but we can reach the few or the one that otherwise might get overlooked.

 

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Photo Getty Images-Fox40

During the month of February, we also launched our Restore Haiti campaign. The funds raised are being used to help rebuild 4 churches that were badly damaged during Hurricane Matthew. Funding for work on the church in Kenscoff has already been sent.

 

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Before the hurricane

 

Kenscoff church

After the hurricane

We are so thankful for every person that has given to help Restore Haiti. The need is still great and we have not raised all of the funds needed to repair all 4 churches but CSI is committed to making sure that these churches get the repairs they need. You can still help us with that goal by donating today to RESTORE HAITI I have had the privilege to attend church services in Haiti and let me just say, the people of Haiti know how to worship God and they will worship him in the rubble and in the ruin but let’s tell our brothers and sisters in Haiti that we have not forgotten them. We will help to restore the rubble to a solid foundation.

Several months ago severe flooding caused widespread damage in the state of Louisiana. CSI has been able to help several churches and families with needed supplies and support. One church in Holden, LA was still in need of repairs to their Educational building and I am happy to report that CSI was able to help with this project.

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CSI board member, Lloyd Shirley in Lousiana standing in flood waters. This is actually a road.

The first quarter came to a close with an urgent need in Peru. The heavy rainfall that has drenched parts of Peru are the worst the area has seen in decades dumping more than 10 times the normal amount of rain in some parts. The Peruvian government estimates the death toll from floods is 94 while relief agencies estimated that 700,000 persons have been left homeless in 12 of the country’s 25 regions. Many people have been cut off from relief because of the widespread damage to roads and bridges. “We’re trapped and we can’t get out,” said Carmela Calle, a 43-year-old homemaker in Catacaos who spoke to The Times by phone. “Please help us. We are on the roof with a newborn baby and two elderly relatives. We are desperate and without food. We have lost everything.” CSI is working with Missionary Dominguez and his family to help their local communities with food relief and basic supplies. We are also hoping to raise additional funding to help repair 8 churches that we know have been damaged. Once these churches are repaired can offer not only places for worship on Sundays but can be a place of refuge all during the week for those who are without hope and help. If you would like to donate to help Peru you can DONATE TODAY.

 

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Line of people waiting for relief supplies

 

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One of the churches that need repairs. They are still holding services in the muddy waters.

CSI is sent many requests each year. Every quarter brings with it new disasters and opportunities to help those in crisis situations. We long for the day that we can say yes to each one. We have a deep desire to be able to send all the funding that is requested for each project but the reality is we can’t. We can’t do it without you! Right now we have 3 requests for urgent medical needs around the world that we are not able to meet due to the lack of funding. For some requests, we haven’t been able to send the full amount needed. We trust that God will provide a way for those in need even if it isn’t through us but would you pray that during 2017 and beyond that CSI would be able to meet even more needs? If you are a regular contributor we say thank you. It is because of your faithful, ongoing support that we can say yes to so many requests. If you are someone who has given in the past but for whatever reason, you haven’t given in awhile then we ask that you prayerfully consider where God might ask you to give now.  Maybe you have never been a financial contributor to CSI. We want you to know that we still value your support. We know that many of you pray for these needs and you help us share the mission of CSI with others and we depend on you. But if you feel like you are ready to go to the next level then we invite you to visit our Website and explore the different projects that so desperately need support.

Thank you again for a great 1st quarter. We know that God has great things in store for the rest of 2017!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Peru Flooding Crisis

CSI is working with missionary Dominguez in Peru to assess how we can best assist the people of Peru who have been affected by the recent flooding crisis. 72 people have perished in the worst flooding the area has experienced in decades. 115,000 homes have been destroyed. Many roadways are impassable and 117 bridges have been washed out making travel dangerous and mostly impossible in many areas. Currently, we would like to assist 6 churches that have had significant damage to their structures by helping to purchase roofing materials and other supplies needed for repairs. One church also has a parsonage attached to it that needs repairs. DONATE HERE

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Food prices have already begun to skyrocket. Other supplies are currently still available but will sell out quickly. This is one reason CSI is asking that you consider what you can give so that we can get aid to those who need it as soon as possible. Let’s send the people of Peru the message of hope. Let’s tell them that they are not alone. We are with them. We will help. We will not forget about them in their time of need.

 

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One of the churches needing repairs

 

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Flood Debris

We will update as we get more information. Thank you for your faithful prayers and support! DONATE HERE

Learn more HERE

 

 

 

Critical Medical Needs and How You Can Help

I am the mother of a child who has Cystic Fibrosis. This is a genetic disease for which there is no cure. While receiving this diagnosis was one of the hardest things I have had to endure, because I am fortunate to live in the United States and am covered under insurance I am able to go through my days with the knowledge that my daughter will receive the care she needs and that my insurance will help to alleviate some of the cost. I know health care in the United States is a hot topic and I am not here to debate that. I understand that our healthcare system isn’t perfect and that there are many uninsured people and that insurance premiums continue to rise. However, most of us do have access to insurance and access to some of the very best care in the world. So what I would like for each of us to consider is the fact that there are millions of people around the world who struggle with critical medical needs that are not able to be met because they live in areas where not only are the prices extremely high, the access to proper care is hard to come by too.

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My daughter this past November after surgery

Consider places where a certain diagnosis is a death sentence when it doesn’t have to be. Places where if you can’t afford the treatment then you don’t get treatment. Places like Pakistan where quality healthcare is available but it comes at a price, a very heavy price which can only be afforded by the rich. This means that most of the population cannot afford it. Places like Zambia where the general state of healthcare is poor with the public health system being grossly underfunded. Places like Myanmar where the general state of healthcare is poor and public hospitals lack many of the basic facilities and equipment. In fact, the World Health Organization has consistently ranked Myanmar as one of the worst nations in healthcare.

 

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CSI Medical Missions in Action

 

Why am I writing about Pakistan, Zambia and Myanmar? Places where many times people are forced to travel long distances, to reach a hospital only to realize there are thousands of people already waiting. The system in these areas is often so poor that two patients lie on the same bed. One of the main concerns in these countries is that even when people are able to get the treatment they need they are faced with a very high price tag for services. Good healthcare is very expensive and very limited. CSI has been given the opportunity to help some of our brothers and sisters who have suffered major health difficulties.

You can help Shamshad a Pakistani church leader who needed spinal cord surgery. Shamshad’s family has been able to cover some of the cost but they are not able to afford all of the expenses. CSI would like to raise $1700.00 for this need. DONATE

You can help the wife of Rev. Robert in Myanmar who had brain surgery. She is recovering but the bills are piling up and the family needs assistance. CSI would like to raise $1800.00 for this need. DONATE

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Daniel from Zambia

You can help Daniel in Zambia. Daniel was a musician and singer at his church. While in college he contracted TB. The nurse treating Daniel gave him a wrong dose of medication which caused the TB to mutate. He was in the hospital for a year and as a result of this error, Daniel has lost his hearing. Hearing aids do not work so doctors have advised him to have a cochlear implant surgery. Without this surgery, his life will never return to what it once was. The quote for this procedure is over $30,000.00. This is a big need but we believe CSI donors have big hearts to help. CSI would love to cover the entire cost of this procedure. DONATE

Any amount you can donate would help tremendously. Do you have insurance? What is your copay? Consider donating the amount of a doctor visit. But truthfully any donation will be a blessing.

Thank you for your prayerful consideration. You have the chance to help the hurting by offering help where they need it most. Let’s see how much we can raise in the next month! What a great way to show love this Easter season. Christ gave so that we might live. Now you can give to help others live better.

 

 

Share Love

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Valentine’s Day is almost here. For many this a day filled with gestures of flowers, candy, dinner and other gifts to someone important in our life. This year at CSI we have some easy ways for you to share the love with the people in your life while also sharing love with people in need around the world.

One easy way is to use this LINK when you shop at Amazon for your gifts.

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So not only can you find the perfect gift for that someone special you will automatically ensure that CSI receives a donation. That’s a win-win.

From now until 2/14/16 you can also download one of our Valentine’s Day Certificates and give a gift to our #restorehaiti project to help rebuild 4 churches that were badly damaged during Hurricane Matthew. This is a lasting gift that you can give in someone’s name that will last much longer than flowers and do more good than any box of chocolates. Print your certificate below and be sure to post a picture on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.

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We hope that your day is filled with lots of love but don’t keep that love to yourself. Make sure you share that love with the world around you.

CSI has so many ongoing projects that need some love shown to them.

3 urgent medical mission needs. Your donation will help to provide brain surgery, spinal surgery and help with a cochlear implant. There are so many people in our world who live in areas where they do not have access to adequate medical care or are unable to cover the costs of needed procedures and medications. When you give to Medical Missions you are sending hope and healing in the name of Jesus.  Donate Now

Georgia tornado victims are still in need. Many are still displaced and are in need of necessities that you and I take for granted. CSI is working with a local church to help provide gift cards to families so that they can purchase personal hygiene items, underwear, diapers and other basics. Donate Now

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CSI is also helping fire victims in Chile. The fires are the worst wildfires in the country’s modern history and have destroyed wide areas of the central-south regions. Nearly 7,000 people in the region have lost their homes, and the earliest reports say that seven people have died, 298 were injured, 1192 evacuated and 1088 in shelters, as a result of the flames.chile-fires-2017s a

We are working with a local missionary to help families from a local church who have lost everything in these fires. When our brothers and sisters are in need we believe that as God’s people we need to send help. Not only our prayers but the physical help that they are in need of as well. Donate Now

Thank you so much for all the love that you show to CSI during the year. You make the difference in the lives of so many.

Restore Haiti-Double Your Donation

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During the early morning hours of October 4, 2016, Hurricane Matthew, a category 4 storm hammered Haiti with deadly wind and rain. Months later people are still needing help. The city of Jeremie took the most direct hit and 80% of the towns buildings were leveled. CSI is committed to not forgetting the people of Haiti in their time of need. Through our Restore Haiti project you have the opportunity to rebuild 4 churches one of which is located in Jeremie.

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Damaged church building

The churches you can help restore  are located in Kenscoff, Jeremie, Cayes and Miragoane. Missionaries Ron and Terry Brian are on location and have people ready to do the work. They are able to buy the supplies locally which will help the local economy. The thing missing is the finances to do the work.

The exciting news is that for the next 14 days your donation will go twice as far! CSI has $40,000 in matching money. This means that any donation received up to $40,000 for the Restore Haiti project will be matched. So if you give $100 it becomes $200. If you can give $1000 it will become $2000! Also if you donate $500 or more in the next 14 days you will be able to receive an engraved commemorative tile. If you have never given financially to CSI,  now is the time. If we can double this $40,000 in the next 14 days we can get all of the needed repairs completed. What a blessing to the people of Haiti to know that they have not been forgotten.

3rdchurch2Worship service I attended in Haiti

Having the comfort of the house of God to gather in and worship in means so much during normal circumstances but especially during times like these. I have had the privilege of worshiping in Haiti and it was one of the most authentic and beautiful experiences of my life.

One of the cities I traveled to while in Haiti was Kenscoff. The picture below is when we were doing a 1 day medical clinic in the church a few years ago.

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Hurricane Matthew has left the church in ruins. But you can help rebuild it!

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Maybe you have been thinking about donating to CSI but just haven’t done it yet. We invite you to take the step now. Let your first donation do twice as much good. We have made it easy and fun to donate. Just head over to www.compassionservices.org and check out the Restore Haiti page where you can make a safe and quick online donation. You can also find some fun Valentine’s Day printables. We invite you to print one out and then take a picture of it or snap a selfie with it and post it on Instagram, Facebook and/or Twitter. You can do one for yourself and there is also a link so that you can do one in honor of or in memory of someone. If you donate $500 or more you will also be able to receive an engraved commemorative tile. So lets show some love to Haiti these next 14 days.

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DONATE NOW

We can’t thank you enough for all of your support!

 

 

The best way to help after disaster

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On Sunday, 1/22/17 a large wedge-shaped tornado ripped through the counties of Albany and Dougherty in the state of Georgia. Multiple lives have been lost, houses were leveled and mobile homes were shredded. Many families have been left without homes, food, warmth or hope. With your help, CSI wants to offer hope in the name of Jesus to those who are just starting to pick up the pieces. We are taking financial contributions to help purchase gift cards for families who are staying in local churches and shelters. This will allow them to purchase the items that they need. It might seem like a small thing but when you are staying in a shelter and need to brush your teeth or wash your hair it is comforting to be able to use the same brands that you use at home. It helps to create a small sense of normalcy in the midst of chaos. DONATE NOW

georgia-tornado-destruction-3-kelly-simones-post-mobile-uploads Mobile upload from Kelly Simone’

Anytime a disaster like this happens people are moved to action. When natural disasters ravage the world people get compassionate and generous and that’s a good thing. However, in many instances those good intentions become anything but. Disaster relief organizations like CSI are trying to figure out better ways to channel the good intentions of those who want to give. While it  might be hard to comprehend, many times the scores of unsolicited and unneeded items received are what relief organizations refer to as the disaster after the disaster.

It’s hard to tell anyone that what they are wanting to give to help someone might not be the best thing. But in many instances even our best intentions just aren’t useful and actually cause more work and expense for relief agencies. In Newtown, Connecticut after the horrific school shooting that claimed the lives of 20 children and 6 adults the town was inundated with donations of thousands and thousands of teddy bears. The thought process behind these donations was that the surviving children needed comfort and teddy bears bring comfort. This is true and a very nice gesture.  However, a 20,000 square foot warehouse had to be rented just to store all of the unneeded teddy bears.

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This photo shows the tens of thousands of stuffed animals, donated to the children of Newtown, Conn., following the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, fill a warehouse. Most donations were sent away. CHRIS KELSEY

When hurricane Andrew in 1992  ravaged the South Florida coast so many unsolicited clothing donations showed up in trucks that drivers couldn’t find organizations that would take them so they just unloaded them on the sides of the road. Rain and heat don’t mix well with used clothing. In 2004, following the Indian Ocean tsunami, a beach in Indonesia was piled with used clothing that had been donated.There just wasn’t time for  volunteers and workers to sort through and wash old clothes. These contributions just sat and rotted.”This very quickly went toxic and had to be destroyed,” said Juanita Rilling, director of the Center for International Disaster Information in Washington, D.C.  So what happened? Local officials poured gasoline on it and set it on fire. And then it was out to sea.

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 Donated clothing discarded on the beach at Banda Aceh, Indonesia. USAID/OFDA

 

Even CSI has been faced with this situation before. Well meaning people have donated unsolicited items when they hear we are responding to a particular disaster. We have received expired medication, old clothing and household items that were unfortunately not needed. When organizations receive this type of stuff it takes man power to sort through everything and then in many instances we have to find somehow to safely dispose of the items. What many people don’t realize is that any food and medication donation has to be thouroughly inspected and properly labeled. Old clothing sometimes requires cleaning. This takes time away from volunteers doing critical tasks. This is what one volunteer worker describes as “disorganized generosity”. Really the only time to donate these types of things is when an organization specifically asks for them and has a specific location for the items to be received and the manpower to handle to unloading and sorting.

CSI receives frequent calls from people who want to ship items to disaster areas whether that be overseas or within the USA. However, this isn’t the most cost-effective way to get needed supplies to those who need them. Many times, especially when shipping overseas, the cost of shipping and customs is more than purchasing new items locally. Many times even in disaster situations the needed supplies can be purchased in a nearby country or state. This saves shipping and customs costs and helps to revive the local economy. CSI is uniquely positioned with contacts all over the world who are able to help us with these types of local purchases making the shipping of items in most instances unnecessary.

One of our main goals is that everything we provide be a help and not a hindrance. We also want to treat people with the dignity and respect that they deserve. While it is true that people who have lost everything have a need for everything to be replaced, we do not want to provide them with just anything. We want everything that they receive to be useful to them in their time of need.

CSI knows that you have a desire to help those in need and we never want to discourage anyone from giving. We know that monetary donations can feel impersonal to many but in reality monetary donations after a disaster are one of the most compassionate things you can do. DONATE NOW

Please be sure to sign up for our mailing list , visit our website and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram where we will post any specific items that we are collecting in the aftermath of a disaster.

We truly are thankful for each one of you who supports the work of CSI. It’s because of you that people in need receive the help they need.

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2016 Year in Review

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2016 was a year filled with challenges and triumphs. Above all it was a year where you once again worked to provide help to people all over the world who experienced devastation due to a natural disaster or who live in areas of ongoing hunger, inadequate medical care and continual humanitarian crisis.

Take a look at where your donations were sent:

Myanmar

Burkina Faso

Fiji

Haiti Medical Mission Trip

Fiji

Uganda

Louisiana

South Sudan

Ecuador

North Carolina

Haiti

Zimbabwe

Texas

Dominican Republic

Costa Rica

Nicaragua

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When you give to CSI you can feel secure in knowing that your donation dollars are changing lives, giving hope, offering healing and sharing Christ’s love. Truthfully, CSI couldn’t do what we do without you. Thank you for another year of being the hands and feet of Jesus to a world in need. Thank you for putting your Compassion In Action.

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Thank you for opening your hearts and for answering the cries for help from your brothers and sisters around the world.

How your donations were used:

Hunger Relief

Hurricane Relief

Medical Mission s

Flood Relief

Education

Emergency Shelter

Clean Water

Cyclone Relief

Earthquake Relief

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We pray you have a blessed 2017!