Church donates cash assistance to Turkey, China

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Church contributed a total of $70,000 in cash assistance to the Chinese and Turkish embassies on Thursday, Aug. 26, in private meetings held in Washington, D.C.

Ann Santini, director of International Affairs for the Church, and Stephen Whyte, a country specialist for the Church, presented the donations to Li Zhaozing, ambassador of China, and Baki Ilkin, ambassador of Turkey, on behalf of the Church.

July floods in China's central province, Hubei, prompted the Church to donate $20,000 to that country, and with the recent news of the devastating earthquake in Turkey, the Church contributed $50,000 to that country's earthquake relief fund.

"The ambassadors were very appreciative of our contributions and we were pleased to be able to provide some support to ease their burdens," Sister Santini said. "Our hearts go out to the victims of these terrible tragedies."

In addition to the cash donations made today, the Church will continue to closely monitor the situations and need for assistance in each country.

The Church has been actively involved in disaster relief and other humanitarian activities throughout the world for many years. Most recently, Latter-day Saint Charities, the official humanitarian service agency of the Church, organized relief efforts for the Kosovar refugees where more than $5.2 million worth of assistance, both in cash and supplies, was contributed.

"Our humanitarian assistance mission extends not just to Church members, but to care for all of God's children," said Garry Flake, director of LDS Charities. "In our effort to provide aid, we are following Jesus Christ's admonition to 'comfort those who stand in need of comfort' and 'to mourn with those who mourn.' "