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Cuba: Disaster Relief

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The tropical island of Cuba has been subject to natural disasters on a regular basis:

2012 - Hurricane Sandy
2016 - Hurricane Matthew
2017 - Hurricane Irma
2018 - Tropical Storm Alberto
2019 - tornado in Havana

In each case the ACTION Cuba team has mobilized immediately in order meet to the needs of individuals and churches in multiple ways:
  • Delivering food, water, cooking oil, emergency lighting, and other needed supplies.
  • Providing funds to purchase roofing materials and cement blocks for home and church repair.
  • Purchasing in Cuba or taking down the tools needed for repair work.
  • Delivering small cash gifts to pastors so they can meet the urgent needs of their congregations.
In addition to this first phase of relief, as funds are available we also carry out more substantial construction projects, to help completely replace homes and churches ruined in the storms.

The impact made by these disaster relief efforts is tremendous. One of our regional coordinators, Eduardo Leyva, describes one of his encounters while delivering relief after Tropical Storm Alberto:

"We arrived at various towns where the families had nothing but rice to eat. When the families saw us coming with food they had tears in their eyes. I assure you that after we left they had a great fiesta!

"But it was hard for us, very hard, to see the conditions in which people were living. The mattresses were rotten from all the water and some of the children were now sleeping on blankets on top of dirt floors. We were there to bring relief and encouragement, but it was difficult for us because our hearts were breaking.

"One of the hardest moments was when we visited a single mom with two kids. She is a cell group leader in her church. She had obtained a small pastry for her kids to eat and when she split it in half for them, the smallest boy came up to us and held his pastry up so that we would eat with him. I said grace so he could eat and then I stepped outside so they would not see me crying."