For ER staff in Ecuador, the Philippines, and South Africa stay-at-home quarantines are hitting the 10-week mark. The extended shutdowns have led to creative methods of ministry and communications, in addition to providing desperately needed food and supplies. Our efforts have resulted in 50,000 people being fed via food distributions. Following is a cumulative summary (based on 10 weeks of COVID-19 response):

South Africa

COVID-19 ResponseFood: 2,400 people have received food, including 300+ kids at a local feeding program and 240 food packages for Dream Center families, each with enough food to feed a household for a week. ER also provided food and funds for five partner ministries to feed people they serve.

Tech: We’re using WhatsApp to tutor Dream Center kids. We’re helping them with homework, including sharing videos and pictures for project assignments. The kids also do artwork at home using donated arts and crafts supplies. We have posted their creations in an online art exhibit run by the Butterfly Art Project. Many kids have submitted a mandala, a form of art that promotes stability and harmony. We’ve also purchased mobile data for 22 families to make these tech projects possible. We’re even sending WhatsApp messages to the Dream Center families with encouraging Bible verses to help us all focus on the Lord during this time.

Philippines (three projects)

Manila Children’s Home (community-distributions)

Food: In nine weeks, we’ve distributed 9,234 food bags, feeding 36,000+ individuals.

Tech: We use Facebook messenger to communicate with donors and beneficiaries.

Pathway For Hope

Food: In six weeks, we’ve distributed 1,941 food packs for 9,705 individuals.

Tech: We use Facebook Group Chat Rooms for training, daycare and our savings group. This allows constant communication to members who share personal and community updates, prayer requests, photos and videos. We’re planning to shift most training to video via Zoom, Google Hangouts, Skype or Facebook Live.

Golden Hands Livelihood

Food: In six weeks, we’ve provided 126 food bags to 703 individuals.

Tech: We use a private Facebook Live to give words of encouragement to our graduates and trainees. We also use messenger chat and video calls. We’re testing Zoom for future meetings.

Ecuador

Food: We’ve provided food for 700 families, representing nearly 3,000 individuals. This includes the families who are part of the Quito Dump Recycling community, as well as hundreds of food packages for the greater community.

Tech: We are hosting two Bible studies and two livelihood workshops weekly using Zoom or Skype. Teachers are mentoring students for 15 minutes weekly, plus connecting with them on their homework. We are purchasing Internet for families that need it.

Scroll Below to learn more. Want to help ER’s emergency support? Donate here and select “COVID-19 Feeding & Response”.

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COVID-19 Response: April 23 Update

ER is actively reaching out to vulnerable people in Ecuador, South Africa and Manila with a COVID-19 response during the pandemic. We’re delivering food, books, supplies and hope to those in greatest need.

We’re especially thankful for supporters who are investing through prayer, encouragement and donations. On April 23, we shared some highlights of what God is doing to impact the lives of at-risk people. 165+ supporters participated in ER’s “Extended Family Video Chat”. Thank you for your encouragement!

Covid-19 ResponseThrough April 23, ER has provided emergency food, cooking supplies, books and more to 34,000+ people in need in the communities we serve. These include the children and families enrolled in our Dream Centers in Quito and South Africa, the Quito Dump recycling community, the Pathway For Hope community and others.

We’ve also been blessed through assisting several strategic partners helping people around the world. It’s been exciting to see the collaboration among staff, volunteers, partners and donors. We’ve seen this before. Whenever a crisis hits a community where we serve, our “extended ER family” displays a spirit of selfless generosity and hope.

During this time of uncertainty, we ask for your prayers for our staff and those we’re helping. We remain vigilant and ready to adjust our ministry strategy. If you have questions, see our FAQ or email us at info@extremeresponse.org.

To support our emergency response, click here and designate your gift “COVID-19 Feeding & Response”.

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Help Feed Kids During the Coronavirus Pandemic

(March 24, 2020)

Greetings,

Like you, our ER family is a bit stunned as we navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. Please know we are praying for you, our partners, volunteers, and especially the vulnerable kids we serve. Our programs are temporarily closing to comply with government-declared emergencies and quarantines. Staff members are working remotely.

This storm will pass, but not quickly and not without exacting a toll. Brian Wallace, ER’s America’s region director, explained the challenge in Quito, Ecuador:

“For most of the kids at the Dream Center, our hot lunch is their main meal for the day. By closing for the mandatory quarantine, the kids will experience daily hunger and struggle to remain healthy and growing.”

ER serves another 33 kids in our Fish Hoek (South Africa) Dream Center and 30 more associated with our Pathway For Hope program near Manila, Philippines. In total, we need to provide food for 109 children who will otherwise miss vitally nutritious meals.

COVID-19 Response in South Africa

Brice Wilson, ER Africa region director, shared this: “Many of the children and their families here in South Africa live day-to-day, week-to-week, so this prolonged interruption in school, work and the ER Dream Centre operations has the potential to have a severe impact on them: from not knowing if there will be enough food each day, to worrying about the safety of kids home alone in the townships, to wondering if the parents will still have a job, because most of the work is in the hard-hit tourism industry.”

We don’t want to lose the precious health and overall progress these kids have achieved. We believe God has called us to love these kids and help them escape generational poverty.

We are working to purchase nutritious food in bulk for these 109 kids to get them through this pandemic. Each region is implementing a plan to disseminate food via staff and contractors.

Purchasing large quantities of groceries during the pandemic will require additional funds to cover shopping, transportation and food preparation/delivery services to assist our staff. (We still have to cover our regular program overhead.

Buying and distributing nutritious food in this manner will be challenging. We estimate at least $2.50/meal of extra costs – a total of $8,175 for 109 kids for 30 days (update: likely longer now).

Together, We Can Do This

We can meet this need. Will you help?

I can’t remember a time when the entire world was affected by the same disaster. For some, this is a time to panic. For followers of Jesus, it is a time to respond. Together, let’s love our neighbors and care for the poor in their distress. Please help us continue to feed “our kids”.

Serving Together,

Jerry Carnill, President & CEO

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