HCJB World Radio sends team to Indonesia for earthquake relief

By June 6, 2006

Indonesia (MNN) — HCJB World Radio is gearing up to send a relief team from Ecuador to Indonesia to join local partners in helping survivors of a 6.3-magnitude earthquake that rocked the area Saturday, May 27.

“We have decided to go ahead with the decision to move forward with a medical team from Ecuador with support on the ground coming from our partner,” says Curt Cole, the mission’s vice president of international ministries. The decision to send a team came after the mission’s local partners requested a medical assistance team.

A medical team in Ecuador, home to the mission’s two hospitals and a community development outreach, is being formed to serve in Indonesia for about two weeks. The relief arm of HCJB World Radio’s Indonesian partner has already sent in five large tents for refugees and is asking for more relief supplies.

The Ecuador team left yesterday. They comprised of two missionary family physicians, nurses and possible a surgeon and anesthesiologist.

“We’re going to a slightly different area than we’ve been to in the past,” says Steve, a physician who joined HCJB World Radio’s relief team that helped tsunami/earthquake survivors in Nias Island, Indonesia, a year ago and one of two teams that aided earthquake victims in Pakistan last fall.

“This time we’re going to an area that seems more heavily populated than the last two experiences we had,” says Steve. “That means concentrated injuries and concentrated wounded whereas in Indonesia the last time the patients were spread out over a large area.”

Sheila Leech, director of HCJB World Radio’s Healthcare Division says, “It’s very exciting experience to walk into an unknown situation, knowing that you’re in the center of His will, not being presumptuous, and also to walk alongside . . . people that we’ve never met before going through a very traumatic situation. It’s an incredible privilege.”

Steve added that, “It’s a good opportunity to explain love . . . on a deeper level too if we get a chance to share that. We are interested in medicine as well and being able to minister to the needs of the people.”

Leech urged people worldwide to pray as the team members prepare for the trip. “Pray for supernatural strength and energy. The team is going to have a very long journey to get there. Indonesia is about as far away from Quito as you can get.”

“It’s going to be tiring,” she added. “Our team will need superhuman strength because when they hit the ground in Indonesia they’re going to be working. They need strength, they need health, and they need His hand of protection upon them. Pray also for team unity and wisdom for the team leaders and that we would be able to maintain good communications with them during this time.”

Reports indicate more than 6,000 dead and more than 500,000 homeless. Meanwhile, the BBC reported that activity at the nearby erupting volcano, Mount Merapi, is said to have increased, threatening further destruction.

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