Helping Each Other in India


When severe storms and typhoons devastated southern India in October 2009, young men and young adults from the Hyderabad and Bangalore India Districts sprang into action to help relieve the suffering of those affected by the floods.

According to President Prasada Gudey of the Hyderabad India District, “Our young men did a wonderful work in delivering food and water to those in need. The goods had been donated and had arrived in the province, but the government was not able to deliver them to the thousands of victims in more than 200 refugee camps. Our members stood out with their Mormon Helping Hands vests as they carried out their efficient work in getting the food and water to everyone.”

Some of the young men and young adults who served commented on how enjoyable and fulfilling service can be.

Below: Sixty members of the Church traveled to refugee camps in northern Karnataka State. They delivered blankets, tarps, and hygiene kits assembled by members of the Church. One young man exclaimed, “It was totally amazing to help with this flood relief project. I have always had a desire to help and serve others. I was so grateful to be able to serve. I had tears in my eyes as I was able to see those people who had lost everything in the flood. It was a great blessing to be able to help the people in my country.”

Right: “I felt very happy that I had an opportunity to serve my fellow beings. I had a wonderful experience, and I learned so many things by doing it, and at the same time we enjoyed being together with friends packing the food and supplies that were needed. I felt my Savior’s love and peace as I served others.” —Venus Armstrong

“I was so happy to be able to help with this project. It brought me much joy to know that I was helping serve people who were in so much need. I prayed that the people would be blessed.” —Vishal Nakka

Above: “When I told my friends at college about the service project, they were so happy for me. I explained what we were doing and shared Church principles with them. I felt wonderful when I was helping the people on the project. Thumbs up to the Church organization for giving us this opportunity to serve.” —Deepak Sharma

Right: “It felt very good to serve on the flood relief project. I helped paint and pass out the bundles of food. It was a great blessing to be there with the other priesthood brethren and to be able to help and serve the people who were in great need.” —Avinash Thomas

Did You Know?

The Prophet Joseph Smith taught that a true Latter-day Saint “is to feed the hungry, to clothe the naked, to provide for the widow, to dry up the tear of the orphan, to comfort the afflicted, whether in this church, or in any other, or in no church at all, wherever he finds them” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith [2007], 426). Because of our desire to serve others, the Church sponsors humanitarian relief and development projects around the world. For example, in 2009:

  • There were 763,737 days of donated labor at Church welfare facilities.

  • Over 8,000 missionaries served in Welfare Services.

Between 1985 and 2011, the Church has given humanitarian assistance to 178 countries. Some specific projects include the following:

  • Providing disaster relief after earthquakes in Haiti, Indonesia, Chile, and Japan; after a tsunami in Samoa; and after a typhoon in the Philippines.

  • Funding a measles vaccination campaign in Africa.

  • Sending out 10.3 million hygiene, newborn, and school kits.

  • Distributing over 61,000 tons of food; over 13,000 tons of medical supplies; and over 89,000 tons of clothing.

NEmore

For more information about the Church welfare program, see providentliving.org.

Photographs by Charles and Carol Kewish; painting of Joseph Smith by Dan Weggeland, courtesy of Church History Museum