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Concert Raises Funds for Myanmar, China Disaster Survivors

By Nadia McGill/ADRA/Visitor Staff

More than 300 people recently gathered at Potomac Conference’s Washington Spanish church in Silver Spring, Md., for a fundraising concert that would assist survivors of the deadly disasters that struck Myanmar and China in early May.

The church partnered with the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) to organize the event in order to raise awareness about the tragedies in China and Myanmar. It also gave members of the local community an opportunity to be a part of ADRA’s emergency response by taking part in different fundraising activities that included an international food fair, clothing sales, a car wash, and health screenings.

ADRA-thon, as the concert was called, is the second fundraising event the church has held to help disaster victims. Last summer a similar event was organized in response to the August 15 earthquake that devastated Southern Peru with proceeds donated to ADRA’s relief efforts in affected communities.

“Last year, the church had a really good experience,” said Homero Salazar, the senior pastor of the congregation. “It created an environment of solidarity among our church members.”

In four hours, more than $3,000 worth of aid was raised, a sum which included a donation of $1,000 by the church.

“I really enjoyed it,” said Napoleon Escobar, one of dozens of volunteers who assisted during the concert. “I’m proud that ADRA is participating in this event with us.”

“I am very happy about the success of the event,” said Pastor Salazar. “There were a lot of people who came out to support. It is important that we open our hearts to those who are in need.”

ADRA’s emergency response in Myanmar is centered on the Irrawaddy Delta region, which suffered the most damage as a result of the cyclone winds that reached more than 120 mph. More than 134,000 are dead or missing, while the United Nations reports that up to 2.4 million have been affected, most of them severely.

Since the storm, ADRA has been responding to the needs of survivors, working to provide medical aid, food, basic relief supplies, and transportation for survivors in the affected area.

In Southwestern China, ADRA is also assisting survivors with food, mosquito nets, shelter materials, medical aid, and much needed counseling services, after a deadly 8.0-magnitude earthquake hit Sichuan Province in May, killing more than 67,000, leaving more than 20,000 missing, injuring more than 360,000, and displacing approximately 5.5 million.

To send a contribution or learn more about ADRA’s emergency response effort in Myanmar and China, contact ADRA at 1.800.424.2372 or adra.org.