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SAMARITAN'S PURSE RELIEF AID REACHES DEEP INTO EMBATTLED BOSNIA

Samaritan's Purse president Franklin Graham completes 4-day inspection tour of shipment and distribution sites and reports "amazing success" of over $5 million in relief aid deliveries to former Yugoslavia.
 BOONE, N.C., March 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Franklin Graham, the president of Samaritan's Purse, a Christian relief organization, says his group's ground deliveries of emergency relief supplies are reaching their targets in Bosnia-Herzegovina, the embattled former Yugoslav republic, with "amazing success." Noted Graham, "I can only conclude that God has His hand on these deliveries because they should not be getting through. Even with late winter storms, snipers and shelling by Serbian gunners, somehow these trucks make it."
 Graham inspected relief operations, interviewed local church and Christian leaders, and met with government officials during his March 12-15 trip to Bosnia-Herzegovina and Croatia. From Croatia, Graham traveled to Germany to join his father, evangelist Billy Graham, who is conducting a crusade in Essen. The younger Graham commented, "After personally witnessing our relief operations in action, I know that God has answered prayers for the safety of these deliveries."
 Graham said the aid supplied by Samaritan's Purse has included food, clothing, medicines and medical supplies, sleeping bags, blankets, Christian literature and toys for children. The most recent cash donation of $100,000 was divided between the Duhovna Stvarnost (Christian Resource Centre) in Zagreb and AGAPE, another Christian group. Also, $4,000 was just provided for maternal and child care in a major Zagreb hospital. Samaritan's Purse also plans to aid hospitals in Sarajevo, where large amounts of medical supplies and basic items such as gauze are desperately needed. Truck drivers from Bosnia pick up aid shipments in Zagreb, Croatia, and then travel the danger-fraught route back into their country.
 Samaritan's Purse aid to the former Yugoslav republics, beginning in June 1991 and totaling over $5,149,000 to date, led the government of Bosnia-Herzegovina in September 1992 to name Samaritan's Purse as an official coordinator of relief aid for the country. The Samaritan's Purse office in the USA has contributed over $1,483,650 of aid, including seven shipments of blankets, plastic sheeting, food, clothing, sleeping bags, blankets, medicines, medical supplies and equipment, toys, Bibles and Christian literature, and a 72-bed emergency and civil defense hospital. The Canadian office in Calgary has contributed over $1,037,971 of medicine, medical equipment, blankets, clothing, and food. The United Kingdom office in London has contributed over $2,432,459 in clothing, blankets, medical equipment, beds, and food. The Dutch office in Amsterdam has contributed over $205,100 in aid, including 15,000 toys, 14,650 thirty-pound food parcels (each containing rice, macaroni, soup, canned beef, and other carefully selected foods) and six disaster medical kits, each of which will treat 10,000 people for three months, according to World Health Organization standards.
 The organization has also included Christian literature in the local language with its shipments, including New Testaments, Billy Graham's book, "Peace with God," and Bible story books for children. During his inspection tour, Graham received firsthand reports on the effectiveness of the delivery of children's items to orphanages, schools, hospitals, and centers for handicapped and retarded children.
 While in the former Yugoslav republics, Graham visited Mostar, capital city of the Herzegovina region. During his stay, the city was shelled 13 times, killing a woman who three days earlier had seen three of her four children killed by shelling.
 Graham noted, "It breaks my heart to see such senseless slaughter. I am more determined than ever to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ to these people who have suffered so much. We want to let them know that God loves them and cares for them."
 "We're devoting our energies and resources not only to bringing physical aid, but also to leading these people to a personal faith in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior," Graham explained.
 Graham also said that Samaritan's Purse plans to continue aiding the people of the region as long as resources are available.
 Samaritan's Purse, founded in 1970, is a Christian mission organization which provides emergency relief aid to hurting people around the world.
 -0- 3/22/93
 /EDITOR'S NOTE: Photos available upon request/
 /CONTACT: Paula S. Woodring, Samaritan's Purse, 704-262-1980/


CO: Samaritan's Purse ST: North Carolina IN: HEA SU:

MM-SB -- CH007 -- 8407 03/22/93 17:35 EST
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Date:Mar 22, 1993
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