Updates from Asia
Farmers donate 25 tons of corn for North Korea
October 23, 2012
Twenty five metric tons of corn, donated by Ohio farmers, is on its way to feed hungry children in orphanages in North Korea. Medical Teams International and its partners are shipping the corn by container, which will arrive in North Korea in early December. This is MTI's first opportunity to provide care to children in North Korea, who are suffering from severe food shortages.
The severity of the hunger problem in North Korea became widely known when the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea hosted a US humanitarian aid delegation in 2011. The delegation witnessed the post-flood destruction of crops, roads and railways from three monsoon-strength storms that hit the country from June through August, 2011. Droughts this year are limiting harvests. Feeding the hungry and replenishing food supplies are nearly impossible.
The deteriorated health conditions from a chronic lack of nutrition lead to the increased vulnerability of children, pregnant and lactating mothers and the elderly to the point that they are unable to overcome mild illnesses. In normal nutritional circumstances, the flooding would not have caused the drastic impact seen in the lives of children. The lack of proper food, clean water and medical supplies, has exacerbated the situation to the point of crisis for many people.
The 720 bags for corn, approximately 41,000 pounds, left from Sterling, Ohio on October 18, 2012. It is traveling by train to Long Beach, California, where it will be loaded onto a ship bound for China. When it arrives in China in late November, it will be transferred to another ship, which will take it across the East China Sea to North Korea.
Our partners, Apostolic Christian World Relief and the Yust Pust Foundation worked with us for more than 5 months to make all of the necessary arrangements for the shipment.
An assessment team is planned to travel to North Korea to assess the needs for additional humanitarian aid, medical care and medical training.