I am sure many of you have heard/read about the earthquakes that happened in China. They are still suffering from many aftershocks and it has been quite devastating. Although the epicenter was not near the girls' hometown, it is still affecting thousands of children and families. Below is part of a letter that Jenny Bowen, Executive Director for Half the Sky wrote. This organization works in China for the welfare of children and orphans on massive levels. They have the respect of China's government and families in the US. If you feel so moved, you will see a link to donate to these efforts.
Please blanket China in prayers right now. Our daughters' homeland is suffering.
I know you have been waiting eagerly for more news of how the children are
faring during the aftermath of the disastrous earthquake in Sichuan.
When something terrible like this happens, confusion is everywhere and
rumors spread. All of us are so worried about the children. We are
trying to be scrupulously careful to pass along only information that
we’ve been able to verify.
We have now set up a procedure whereby we can get an update from the
Ministry of Civil affairs each day. They are supervising all relief
efforts so have the most complete and accurate information available. We
also now have contact information for all affected welfare institutions
and have begun the process of reaching out to them directly to see if they
I will write daily with any new information that has been given to us.
Again, please do not contact us to inquire about individual institutions.
We will give you all of the information we have. If you do not hear from
us about a particular place, it likely is not affected. At any rate, we
don’t have any information beyond what I am passing along to you.
As of now, Wednesday afternoon in China, there are 12,012 people dead and
7,841 missing in Sichuan alone, and the numbers continue to rise. 26,206
people are living in temporary shelters. Only 30 children of 900 have
been rescued from the collapsed high school in Dujiangyan, Sichuan. At
least 20 children were buried in the collapse of a primary school in
What follows are the welfare institutions closest to the epicenter:
Mianyang, Zitong County, Dujiangyan, Deyang and Guanguan.
The following is a preliminary, and not necessarily complete, list of
institutions which are also potentially affected: Wenjiang County,
Neijiang, Rongxian, Zigong, Ganzizhou, Panzhihua, Luzhou, Santai County,
Leshan, Suining, Nanchong, Guang’an.
We will have a full list later today or early tomorrow. While we’ve heard
rumors about some of the above, we won’t pass on that information until
we’ve made direct contact and verified. I want to stress that we’ve heard
no reports of children in the welfare institutions being injured, only
that some have been relocated for their safety.
An update on the Chengdu CWI: There has been some foundation damage to the
rehab building and some cracked walls in other buildings, which are being
carefully inspected. The children’s building is in the best shape and all
children have been moved to the first floor but spend most of the day
outside, weather permitting – or in the institution buses if there is
rain. All institution staff and HTS staff are working around the clock to
care for the children and keep them safe.
In cooperation with China’s Ministry of Civil Affairs, Half the Sky has
set up the Children’s Earthquake Fund. The Fund will provide direct aid
to the thousands of children who are suffering in the wake of the
earthquake and aftershocks. Donations will be used to provide emergency
and long-term relief to children affected by the disaster, including
emergency shelter, food, and medical care for children orphaned or
separated from their families, as well as temporary or long-term foster
care or, if necessary, temporary institutional care. The ministry has
guaranteed that the funds will be used only to help the children.
You can donate to the fund by calling Half the Sky (+1 510 525 3377) or at
one of two dedicated sites online:
Global Giving: http://www.globalgiving.com/pr/2100/proj2086a.html
Half the Sky website: