Sea by Heidi R. Kling: Spotlight on Relief Agencies


In our June Book of the Month, Sea by Heidi R. Kling, the main character Sienna travels to post-Tsunami Indonesia with her father’s international relief team to help tsunami orphans cope with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Heidi, herself, has made it no secret that she believes strongly in the work international relief groups do following disasters such as the 2004 Tsunami (or Hurricane Katrina, the Haiti earthquake, etc.). So today, we’re spotlighting a few international relief groups that you can help out with.

The Salvation Army

Most people only know the Salvation Army for their red kettles that we see every year at Christmas time. But that’s really such a small part of what the Salvation Army does, and it’s a shame more people don’t know about the vast array of services they provide.

The Salvation Army works across the globe in a variety of capacities. In your own home town, the Salvation Army offers services for the poor, the homeless, troubled teens, pregnant teens, battered women, and so much more. Internationally, the Salvation Army offers this same help to people in countries all across the globe. And there are so many ways you can help the Salvation Army — from dropping a few coins into that red kettle at Christmas, to volunteering your time.

The Salvation Army is also one of the number one disaster relief groups in the world — helping both here in the U.S. and abroad.

Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is a team of 3700 professionals helping turn crisis into opportunity for millions around the world. By trade, we are engineers, financial analysts, drivers, community organizers, project managers, public health experts, administrators, social entrepreneurs and logisticians. In spirit, we are activists, optimists, innovators and proud partners of the people we serve.

Mercy Corps offers a wide variety of services — reacting to international disasters, sending teams of professionals across the globe and stepping up to help people overcome war, disaster and more — and create a better life. The group lists lots of ways you can donate & help out on their website.

The American Red Cross

The American Red Cross is the country’s #1 emergency response group, and does more than simply host blood drives:

As part of a worldwide movement that offers neutral humanitarian care to the victims of war, the American Red Cross distinguishes itself by also aiding victims of devastating natural disasters. Over the years, the organization has expanded its services, always with the aim of preventing and relieving suffering.

Today, in addition to domestic disaster relief, the American Red Cross offers compassionate services in five other areas: community services that help the needy; support and comfort for military members and their families; the collection, processing and distribution of lifesaving blood and blood products; educational programs that promote health and safety; and international relief and development programs.

The American Red Cross makes it easy for you to help, too: by donating, giving blood, and volunteering.

3 thoughts on “Sea by Heidi R. Kling: Spotlight on Relief Agencies

Add yours

    1. Ooh, those are good ones — I’ll add some links!

      I have a huge soft spot for Salvation Army, just because we’ve been involved with them through my family for years and years … basically, for my whole life.

      In 5th grade, a Salvation Army officer told my dad about a family he’d met in the country of Georgia, and the kids didn’t have shoes or sweaters. My whole class decided we were going to send them a care package. We put together clothes, shoes, toys, coloring books, crayons, etc. We even wrote cards to them, and had them all translated into Russian so the family could read them.

      We later got an amazing letter back from them, courtesy of the SA. The experience kind of changed my life.

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