1999 NCC News ArchivesCWS/NCC Looks Ahead to Ongoing Needs in Kosovo Response
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Thirty-five Protestant and Orthodox communions work together through Church World Service a ministry of the National Council of Churches - to meet human need in more than 80 countries around the world, including the United States.
How to Help
Contact Church World Service, Attn. Kosovo Crisis, 28606 Phillips Street, P.O. Box 968, Elkhart, IN 46515. Phone: (800) 297-1516, ext. 222.
|June 24, 1999, NEW YORK -- Looking ahead to
ongoing needs as Kosovar refugees begin to return home or find they must remain in camps,
Church World Service is seeking support for five responses in the region as it anticipates
providing $3.4 million in material and financial assistance by the end of the summer.
"As the peace process begins to unfold, Church World Service is joining with other organizations and with our partners in the region in laying plans to help with the return of refugees and the rebuilding of Kosovo," said Donna Derr, Interim Emergency Response Director for NCC/CWS.
"This is a defining moment," said William Sage, Interim Director of the NCC/CWS Immigration and Refugee Program (IRP), who recently visited Macedonia as part of a U.S. Voluntary Resettlement Agency delegation. "Even though we are hopeful of the return, we insist that security and other basic living conditions be met.
"We also insist that resettlement is maintained as a viable option," he said, "particularly for people with relatives and for the many refugees with special medical and other needs. In our visit, we found the refugees were guardedly optimistic about their immediate future and fearful that the Balkan winter will set in before they can return to Kosovo."
IRP has been resettling Kosovar refugees in the United States with the help of local churches in a half dozen states, including Illinois, New York and Texas.
The five parts of the ongoing CWS response include:
So far, NCC/CWS assistance has included the aforementioned refugee resettlement, material goods, visits to the region and advocacy with government officials here. Highlights include:
Material assistance has been provided as follows:
Additionally, Linda Hartke, CWS Operations Officer, will travel to Macedonia and Kosovo June 29-July 2 as part of a joint delegation to survey first-hand the humanitarian, human rights and refugee situation there and to make recommendations for a long-term strategy for ecumenical work in Kosovo.
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