Friday, September 6, 2013

Today We Count

The United Methodist Volunteers in Mission (UMVIM) team from First United Methodist Church in Portland Oregon, shares their experiences with UMCOR as they volunteer at UMCOR West Depot in Salt Lake City, Utah.

In part two of a five-part blog series from First United Methodist Church in Portland, Oregon, Volunteer in Mission Kay Ward shares the value in performing the oftentimes mundane tasks in preparing relief supplies for those most in need. 

By Kay Ward

August 28th, 2013

Day 3

What a rewarding, expanding experience this is. Last night after dinner we shared some of the things that impressed us most. For one it was the loving extras knitted, crocheted or sewn into the handmade layette garments. For another the realization that the mundane task of taking tubes of toothpaste out of their box and bagging them in groups of 12 was important work that needed to be done. Two others were impressed with the size of the undertaking, the thousands of items that pass through the UMCOR Depot on to the needs of the world.

Rev. Brian is currently working on staging the next big shipment that will go out in October. With funds low he didn’t want to overbuy for the health kits or the layette kits. Though thousands of items are donated it all has to come out even with each kit fully supplied so Brian must use budget to cover the expense. We were asked to inventory what was on hand. The numbers are impressive. The layette kit inventory was 102 complete kits, 221 diapers, 496 shirts/onesies, 3,136 washcloths, 2,611 gowns/sleepers, 4,920 diaper pins, 1250 sweaters, and 169 receiving blankets.

The health kit inventory was 3,120 hand towels, 2,719 washcloths, 3,600 combs, 3,405 toothbrushes, 3,600 nail clippers, 2,880 soaps, and 7,345 bandages.

YES, we counted it all! No wonder we are impressed with the volume.

During the day a man from Southern Arizona came by to drop off some materials from his church. He was up this way on vacation. We thought of all the effort we had made this year at FUMC Portland to complete 82 layette kits and enough sweaters and gowns to complete one pallet. All over the nation churches are doing the same thing.

Kay Ward
United Methodist Volunteer in Mission

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