In a hearing focused on the Philippines following last month’s Typhoon Haiyan, Congressman Chris Smith (R-NJ), Chairman of the Human Rights Subcommittee of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, made sure to emphasize the importance of “robust inclusion” of faith-based groups into U.S. relief efforts. Nancy Lindborg, Assistant Administrator of the Bureau for Democracy, Conflict and Humanitarian Assistance at the U.S. Agency for International Development, said “Amen” to Rep. Smith’s comments and cited the work of churches helping in the Philippines as evidence of the benefits of faith groups, some of her agency’s “most valued partners.”
Following Ms. Lindborg, Sean Callahan of Catholic Relief Services and Chris Palusky of World Vision also testified. Mr. Palusky declared, “The need is tremendous but we can give hope to the 13.2 million people who were impacted by Typhoon Haiyan, more than five million of whom are children. America and the Philippines are rightfully proud of the longtime friendship between our countries. May our response be worthy of this friendship.”
• Watch this full hearing and read witness testimony here.
By Aaron Mercer, Vice President of Government Relations
Published: December 6, 2013