In the June edition of the Global Health newsletter, read about the affirmation by The United Methodist Church of Abundant Health: Our Promise to Children; download, view, or share an Abundant Health infographic and a video resource; celebrate with Global Health a Harry R. Kendall Fund recipient; learn how the life of a soon-to-be mother was spared in Liberia; and read about youngsters who decided to improve their health by giving up a popular, sugary beverage.
General Conference Affirmed Next Global Health Initiative
Last month, during United Methodist General Conference in Portland, Ore., the denomination affirmed Abundant Health: Our Promise to Children as the next step in its global health initiative. Through it, the church commits itself to reach 1 million children with lifesaving interventions by 2020.
Coordinated by Global Ministries, Abundant Health will focus on four core areas impacting the health of children throughout the world. It will aim to ensure safe births, address nutritional challenges and promote breastfeeding, advance prevention and treatment of childhood diseases, and promote children’s health and wholeness.
The program also will engage at least 10,000 churches in the United States to develop support systems for treatment, education, and disease prevention in their neighborhoods. Global Ministries will encourage churches to promote physical activities, promote a healthy diet and nutrition, provide education for tobacco- and drug-free living, and promote mental health education.
Read the full story here and visit the Abundant Health web page at www.umcabundanthealth.org.
Resources: Now, Just Imagine Abundant Health
Use this new infographic to get a snapshot of the vision of Abundant Health: Our Promise to Children, and view the areas where this work has already begun. Download and share it today.
Watch a promotional video for Abundant Health: Our Promise to Children, and share it with your community and congregation. Participate in this important work with your prayers and gifts.
The United Methodist Church’s John Dean Town Clinic and Camphor Mission in Liberia are the only health facilities serving remote communities in Grand Bassa County. With funding and technical support from Global Health, the clinic organized educational sessions for the community on recognizing the danger signs of ill health and seeking health care, while also promoting the community-clinic relationship through the engagement of traditional birth attendants.
Community “Runners” Save a Pregnant Woman in Liberia
By Mary Randall Zigbuo*
Following the sessions, a pregnant woman from Gbuenxnea was brought to John Dean Town Clinic in a hammock by “runners,” who had traveled by foot for one hour in order to save her life. The woman was very weak from prolonged diarrhea and vomiting. Without the “runners” she would not have made it to the clinic. She received immediate treatment that saved her life and the life of her unborn child.
Innovative solutions with community participation like this are critical components in the fight to stave off maternal deaths in remote areas.
*This story by Global Ministries Missionary Mary Randall Zigbuo was adapted for the Global Health newsletter.
Celebrate Recipient of the Harry R. Kendall Fund
Good news! The Global Health team rejoices with a new registered nurse, Janet Otchere, who is originally from Ghana. She is a scholarship recipient of the Harry R. Kendall Fund for health-related degrees. Otchere attended the College of Nursing at Seton Hall University South Orange, N.J., and currently resides in Hillside, N.J.
In a note to Global Health staff, Otchere, who works at Overlook Hospital in Summit, wrote, “I’m happy and proud to say I am a registered professional nurse. I passed the board exam!!! This could not have been possible without your help. I’m indebted to you and your organization for giving me a chance to achieve my goal. I am proud to say I am the first to go to college in my family and, most importantly, to become a registered nurse. My goal is to provide ongoing community service to those in need of medical assistance and who are less fortunate. Thank you for all you do for needy students like myself.”
Penfield UMC Youth Group Takes Up Health Challenge
In February, Penfield United Methodist Church in New York brought a group of young people to Global Ministries to learn about mission work. Following the Global Health presentation, some of the youngsters promised to start thinking about the changes they could make to improve their health.
Four months after the visit, Joshua Knaak wrote to Global Health staff on his decision to give up soda.
“I'm an 11th grader who goes to Penfield High School, and I'm really into U.S. History and the 2016 election. I made the decision to give up soda because I needed to drink more water, and I didn't want to add sugar to my body. The decision to give up soda was easy to stick to even though my parents and brother drink soda at restaurants. I would recommend to young people to give up soda for a while because you are helping yourself. I think ALL junk food that is being served at school should be gone, and their needs to be less junk food in this country.”
Thank you Joshua for living up to your promise.
Photo 1: A young family being well taken care of in the fight against Malaria at Samuteb Memorial Hospital in DR Congo. Photo: Roman Hofer
Photo 2: Download and share this Abundant Health: Our Promise to Children infographic.
Photo 3: Two men carry a pregnant woman in a hammock to the John Dean Town Clinic in Liberia. Photo courtesy of Mary Randall Zigbuo
Photo 4: Janet Otchere is now a registered nurse thanks to support she received from Global Health through the Harry R. Kendall Fund. Photo courtesy of Janet Otchere
Photo 5: Soda can. Image by CoolKid1993, English Wikipedia