Episcopal Relief and Development (ERD) received a $500,000 gift from Christ Church Cathedral in Indianapolis, Indiana, to assist with Hurricane Katrina relief and recovery efforts. It is the largest church gift ever received in ERD's history.
"The vestry [board] did not hesitate in making this gift, as the need is so apparent," said the Very Rev. Robert Giannini, dean and rector of Christ Church Cathedral. "Relief efforts are only the beginning. Rebuilding will be the real effort that will continue for years to come." He noted that the gift is, "meant to inspire everyone -- both individuals and organizations -- to make large gifts, giving as much as they can."
ERD responded immediately after the disaster and continues working with affected dioceses, such as Louisiana, Mississippi, and Central Gulf Coast to supply emergency relief such as food, shelter and medical supplies. ERD has also partnered with dioceses where large numbers of displaced people have relocated, such as West Texas, Alabama, Western Louisiana, and East Tennessee to provide food, housing and other critical aid to evacuees. For more information on ERD's response, please visit www.er-d.org.
An ERD assessment team including Robert W. Radtke, ERD president, and Peter Gudaitis, executive director of New York Disaster Interfaith Services (Diocese of New York), went to Baton Rouge days after the hurricane to help the Diocese of Louisiana plan its response.
"ERD is most grateful for the compassion expressed by so many people in response to the devastation cause by Hurricane Katrina," said Radtke. "Along with our partners in dioceses across the country, we will rebuild the lives of the people most affected by this disaster."
"We are deeply moved by the incredible generosity of Christ Church Cathedral," said Presiding Bishop Frank T. Griswold. "I am overwhelmed by the generosity of Episcopalians across the country as they desire to reach out in active care for those affected by this enormous tragedy."
To make a contribution to help people affected by Hurricane Katrina, please donate to the Hurricane Katrina Response Fund by credit card at http://www.er-d.org or by calling 1-800-334-7626, ext. 5129. Gifts can be mailed to: Episcopal Relief and Development, c/o Hurricane Katrina Response Fund, PO Box 12043, Newark, NJ 07101.
Episcopal Relief and Development is the international relief and development agency of the Episcopal Church of the United States. An independent 501(c) 3 organization, ERD saves lives and builds hope in communities around the world. ERD provides emergency assistance in times of crisis and rebuild after disasters and enables people to climb out of poverty by offering long-term solutions in the areas of food security and health care, including HIV/AIDS and malaria.