United Methodist Committee on Relief

The UMCOR Hotline for May 8, 2013

May 2013 | UMCOR Hotline

Reading the signs of depression in an adolescent could help reduce the risk of suicide.
When Ginger Biddle's nephew committed suicide in 1995, he was only 16 years old, and the tragedy took the whole family by surprise. But, looking back, Biddle believes there were signs.

“He had written an essay for his English class, and it talked about how, if you're unhappy, you have the right to take your own life,” Biddle said. “He also had mentioned to his friends he was going to kill himself, but they thought he was joking.”

A Registered Nurse, Biddle has also earned her PhD, and her mental health-related program is accepted by the Association of American Medical Colleges.

“I created a program to teach nurse practitioners to assess adolescents for suicide risk after my nephew committed suicide. My way of coping was to learn more,” she said.

Biddle conducted training covering adolescent suicide in her church with the aim of helping people identify the risk factors and warning signs—and go about getting them the assistance they need.

Faith community nurses like Biddle are also known as parish nurses or congregational nurses.

The United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) supports parish nurses across the United States through educational initiatives, publications, and event planning. Read more.

Learn more about mental health and how you can be part of a supportive, caring community. Download and share a church bulletin insert. And give to Congregational Health Ministry, Advance #3021045. Give now

A family that fled violence in Syria takes refuge in Turkey.
Your continued prayers for peace in Syria are needed as the country sinks further into war. With recent developments increasing the possibility of an expansion of the conflict, prayers for peace and for the safety of civilians are extremely important.

Reading the signs of depression in an adolescent could help reduce the risk of suicide.
UMCOR is seeking a Community-Based Primary Health Care Technical Officer to provide technical guidance to UMCOR field offices, United Methodist hospitals and clinics, and grassroots partners around the world in the area of maternal and child health and integrated primary health-care initiatives. Learn more.


In the Dominican Republic, cacao harvesting is creating a market for organic cocoa and enriching the lives of vulnerable populations thanks to CONACADO, a democratically run cooperative. Watch this new video to learn more. You can also observe World Fair Trade Day, May 11, by making fair-trade purchases.

Relief Supplies

Relief-supply kits are desperately needed. UMCOR depots are running low in their inventory of layette, sewing, and bedding kits. Visit the UMCOR Relief-Supplies webpage to learn how to assemble and send these kits and help UMCOR meet needs worldwide.

Tornado season is already here, and hurricane season is looming. UMCOR provides a host of different kinds of training for disaster response. Some prepare conferences, while others support churches and individuals interested in ministering to disaster survivors. View UMCOR’s Disaster Response Training Calendar and find out which training programs are happening near you.

UMCOR provides emergency relief in many areas of the world. To find out more about UMCOR's ministries, please visit You can donate to any project by placing a contribution in the offering plate at a local United Methodist church by sending a check to:

PO Box 9068
New York, NY 10087-9068
or by calling 1-800-554-8583, where credit card donations are accepted. You can also give online by clicking any of the "DONATE" links or make a $10 donation anytime by texting "UMCOR" to 80888. UMCOR is exempt from tax under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of the United States and qualifies for the maximum charitable contribution deduction by donors.

And, please pray for those who are hungry, displaced, sick or in poverty because of these and other natural and human-made disasters, and for the workers who minister to them.

Photo Captions

Image 1. Reading the signs of depression in an adolescent could help reduce the risk of suicide.
Susan Kim

Image 2. A family that fled violence in Syria takes refuge in Turkey.
Courtesy of IBC

Image 3. World Fair Trade Day is May 11. View a video: .

Image 4. Layette kits and other relief supplies are in short supply. Visit the UMCOR Relief Supplies webpage to learn how you can help.
Judith Santiago


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Mission Statement
Compelled by Christ to be a voice of conscience on behalf of the people called Methodist, UMCOR works globally to alleviate human suffering and advance hope and healing.