October 2, 2017:    The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) is part of a large coordinated response to help people from the pacific island nation of Vanuatu recover from being displaced by volcanic activity on the country’s Ambae Island last month.

Although the volcanic eruption did not take place, the entire population of Ambae was evacuated. In addition, the volcanic activity which did take place destroyed livestock and crop.

ADRA is part of the Church Agencies Network Disaster Operation (CAN DO), an Australian network of religious disaster relief organizations partnering with the Australian government.

CAN DO brings together Australia’s Act for Peace, the Adventist Development and Relief Agency Australia, Anglican Board of Mission, Anglican Overseas Aid, the Australian Lutheran World Service, Transform Aid International (Baptist World Aid Australia), UnitingWorld, and Caritas Australia.

According to a report by Caritas Australia posted on news platform ReliefWeb, CAN DO is working with the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) which has invested close to AUD3 million in relief to the country due to the displacement situation. Evangelical Christian humanitarian aid, development, and advocacy organization, World Vision, is providing technical support for the relief work.

ADRA will lead the CAN DO effort in using AUD350,000 in DFAT funding to develop community leadership and protection for women, children and other vulnerable groups affected by the volcanic activity.

“The DFAT funds will make a life-changing difference to people in Ambae,” said Anna Downing, Capacity Development Manager for ADRA Vanuatu.

“ADRA is proud to lead the CAN DO response and work with the Anglican Church of Melanesia (ACOM) in delivering this response in Vanuatu.”

CAN DO Chair, Anthony Sell said that DFAT funding will help bring humanitarian protection and safety to 700 women, boys and girls. The aid will also build community cohesion for over 5,500 people allowing them to strengthen as a community and be better prepared for future challenges.

ADRA is the humanitarian agency of the Adventist Church. Its mission is to provide sustainable, community-based development as well as disaster relief internationally.

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