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Tropical Storm Jeanne claims nine lives in the Dominican Republic

By September 23, 2004

Dominican Republic (MNN) — Nine people are dead and thousands are trying to rebuild their lives after Tropical Storm Jeanne ripped through the Dominican Republic. While the storm is now a hurricane and continues to churn in the Atlantic Ocean, Hope International is gearing up to help small business owners in Jesus name.

Hope International’s Dave Larson says their approach to helping is unusual. “99-percent of what is done after natural disasters are handouts; giving people food, water, clothing, shelter. However, I’ve found the best thing in the long run is to help people get back on their feet (is) not a hand out, but a hand up. And, we’re doing that through micro-finance, through small business loans.”

According to Larson as they help in a physical way, it has spiritual implications. “By working with churches and other Christian ministries you gain opportunities to earn the right to be heard. You can share the love of Christ both tangibly and verbally through this type of ministry.”

Hope International is raising money to assist as many victims as possible. Larson says, “As little as $50 can help somebody start over. $50 can help someone get enough stock, or enough equipment, or enough repair parts, or enough materials to help them recover their businesses so they can go out and make a living.”

If you’d like to help Hope International with this effort, call them in the U-S at (877) 982-4673, or go to their web site, http://www.hopeinternational.org.

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