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In the aftermath of storms that swept the southeastern U.S., the national Woman’s Missionary Union and the WMU Foundation have awarded a $5,000 grant from the Humanitarian Emergency Aid for Rebuilding Tomorrow (HEART) Fund to assist international students and the children of missionaries attending William Carey University in Mississippi.

“My first thought after witnessing the vast destruction in my community was that the HEART Fund was there for just such a crisis as this,” said Linda Donnell, WMU Foundation board member and Mississippi regional coordinator for Christian Women’s Job Corps/Christian Men’s Job Corps, a ministry of WMU.

The tornado touched down in Hattiesburg, where William Carey University is located, on the morning of Jan. 21, killing at least four people. The violent storm crossed several counties.

Donnell was particularly concerned for international students and missionaries’ children, often referred to as MKs, attending the university who are far from home.

“I am hoping that attention can be directed towards their needs,” Donnell said.

The HEART Fund grant will be used to buy gift cards for 30 MKs as well as the international students affected by the storms.

“This grant will have a huge impact on their lives,” said Dr. Cindy Townsend, executive director of Mississippi WMU and member of the WMU Foundation board of trustees.

Linda Cooper, national WMU president, said, “My prayer is that the lives of those affected will see the love of Jesus in our grant, for He is the source of our every need.”

Amid the destruction, Donnell hopes the victims will not get discouraged.

“I pray that they will not lose hope for a better tomorrow,” she said.

Janis Ezell is the WMU Foundation’s marketing assistant.

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