Hope In Crisis
About 690,000 people have fled across the border from Myanmar to Bangladesh since August 2017 to escape the violence in Myanmar’s western Rakhine state. About 800,000 refugees—mostly women and children—crammed in temporary camps in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, have been in dire need of water, food, shelter and medicine (Source: UNHCR).
Operation Mobilisation (OM) in Bangladesh seeks to implement a coordinated relief response to this crisis together with local partners to provide hope and support to the refugees—meeting their physical, psychological and spiritual needs.
In January this year, a partner organisation of OM had team members in the refugee camps in Cox’s Bazar for a distribution. 1000 packets of warm clothing items, including blankets, socks, and gloves, were distributed to 1000 families. Team members also spent time with people and their families, especially children, taking time to meet their basic needs such as cutting hair and nails, and organising some fun and teaching.
“It was a great time. The team was connected by the same purpose to serve people, and the work was done smoothly without any problems,” Pastor Saul*, the programme coordinator shared. “Everyone enjoyed the distribution, and the visits with the kids in the camp was special. People just want someone to spend time with them, to listen to their stories and make them feel that they are human beings, created the same as any other. Our team was able to do that.”
“It was an amazing experience to get to spend time with the children. There were children everywhere and we could see that having fun, being there and playing with them, was valuable to them. They quickly learned the songs we taught and were singing and doing the choreography enthusiastically,” Faiz*, a team member, said.
OM Singapore was able to obtain a permit from the Commissioner of Charities to raise funds to aid this relief effort. Many individuals and churches came forward in unity and gave generously to this cause. To date, about S$94,000 has been raised in Singapore.
If you would like to support OM projects all over the world that are catalytic in seeing vibrant communities of Jesus followers, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
* Names changed