Volcan De Fuego

GUATEMALA – When Volcan de Fuego, one of Central America’s most active volcanoes, erupted without warning, clouds of gray ash billowed thousands of feet into the air and a deadly pyroclastic flow sped down the mountainside. Dozens were killed, hundreds more went missing, and thousands were left displaced from their homes.

Volcano Relief for Guatemalans

Thanks to your support, Operation Blessing’s Guatemala office immediately sprang into action to bring relief to the victims of this disaster. First, OB Guatemala staff began putting together emergency aid kits containing food and hygiene supplies. In partnership with the Guatemalan Army and the Asociación Nacional de Municipalidades (ANAM), these kits were soon distributed to residents who had been evacuated to shelters.

Operation Blessing also distributed more than 1,000 respirators to firefighters and over 30,000 facemasks to area residents. These respirators and facemasks helped filter out the harmful volcanic ash that continued to fall.

An Operation Blessing medical director helps Fuego victims.

In addition, OBI teams used mobile kitchens to help provide hot meals to the firefighters and first responders who were tirelessly working to rescue survivors.

It’s only through your support that these disaster response operations were made possible!

From the Field

Aiding West Japan after Devastating Floods

JAPAN – Devastating flooding in West Japan has created one of the worst natural disasters that country has faced since the earthquake and tsunami of 2011. But the ongoing, faithful support of Operation Blessing partners empowered OB Japan to rush aid to hard hit areas.

Successive heavy downpours between June and mid-July, 2018, brought over 20 inches of rain to some areas of Japan, causing flooding and landslides throughout the western part of the country. At the latest count, over 200 are dead and 21 remain missing.

A road destroyed by flooding.

Another 8 million people faced evacuations, and thousands fled to shelters. Almost 300,000 households lost their water supply, and thousands lost electricity. Hard hit areas included Hiroshima, Kurashiki, and Sukumo City. Floods have left homes destroyed, roads damaged, and essentials like food and water in short supply.

Operation Blessing workers rush aid to flood victims in West Japan.

With your support, Operation Blessing Japan quickly sprang to action. Initially, they rushed much needed aid like water bottles and tools for cleaning damaged homes to shelters in the affected areas. They also began reaching out to local churches and partner organizations to plan for long term recovery efforts.

Next, in cooperation with volunteers from local churches, they set to work cleaning homes and blessing disaster victims like the Tuzame family in Kurashiki. They removed mud from their floors, walls, and cabinets, and dried their house with fans. The family was excited and grateful for the help. OB Japan also helped a farmer, Mr. Ono, whose barn had been filled with agricultural chemicals during the flooding.

A flooded, mud-filled building in need of recovery.

As they continued their recovery efforts, they met many overwhelmed homeowners who were dazed and confused about how to even begin the recovery process. In response, OB Japan offered consultation services to provide a roadmap to recovery for those still reeling from the disaster.

The residents of West Japan have a long rebuilding process ahead of them, but thanks to your generosity, Operation Blessing can continue to stand beside them, aiding them along the way.

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles

WORLDWIDE – Operation Blessing partners are speeding relief, comfort, and hope to millions around the world. Sometimes, however, getting to where the need is greatest can be an enormous challenge. Undaunted, your Operation Blessing teams use whatever mean necessary to transport food, medicine, and other essential supplies to the remotest villages and harshest disaster zones.

Here are just a few examples of the lengths Operation Blessing will go to bring your help to those in need, utilizing a diverse array of transportation methods and vehicles.

Four by fours delivering aid to Bedouins in the Judean Desert.

Reaching the Bedouins in the Judean Desert
Struck by drought, two Bedouin camps in the southern hills of Hebron were facing a severe food shortage. Operation Blessing enlisted the help of a local 4×4 club in Jerusalem, and soon a convoy of rugged off-road vehicles were making their way across the desert laden with supplies. In all, Operation Blessing was able to deliver enough food to supply over 800 people for an entire month.

Air lifting aid to Haiti after a hurricane.

Help from the Air in Haiti
After Hurricane Matthew made landfall in Haiti as a category 4 storm, Operation Blessing took to the sky to bring relief, chartering a small plane to help survey the damage from the air and bring relief supplies to the badly damaged town of Jérémie. Though the tiny aircraft’s small payload only allowed about 30 extra pounds of supplies, OBI made maximum use. One case of amoxicillin, containing 144 bottles of antibiotics, accounted for 22 pounds. Eight pounds was given to two chlorine generators and the salt required to run them for one week — enough to treat 68,000 gallons of drinking water!

Elsewhere in Haiti, the remote community of Bwa Pikan was cut off from the outside world and in desperate need of relief. Thanks to partners like you, Operation Blessing secured a helicopter and loaded a cargo net with food, hygiene supplies, chlorine to disinfect water, seeds to restart crops, medical supplies, and more. In all, the helicopter made three trips from Port-au-Prince to bring these essential supplies to the people of Bwa Pikan.

Semi-trucks from OBI's Hunger Strike Force deliver food and supplies in the U.S.

Hunger Strike Force
In the United States, Operation Blessing’s Hunger Strike Force boasts a fleet of semi-trucks that are constantly transporting tons of food, hygiene items, and more to our network of food pantries and other ministries across the country. These trucks deliver millions of pounds of food to families in need each year thanks to partners like you.

Using an army truck to reach flood victims.

Driving Through Floodwaters in Louisiana
In August of 2016, prolonged rainfall caused widespread, catastrophic flooding across much of southern Louisiana. Operation Blessing’s U.S. Disaster Relief team responded immediately, but the floodwaters were still so high that many areas remained virtually inaccessible. To get through, the team enlisted the use of a massive 6X6 Army truck. The truck plowed through the floodwaters to reach isolated communities with relief supplies, including much-needed drinking water.

Motorcyles deliver aid in Mexico after an earthquake.

On Wheels and Wings in Mexico
When two powerful earthquakes rocked the nation of Mexico in a span of only 11 days, Operation Blessing partners responded immediately. In Mexico City, traffic jams clogged the city streets making in nearly impossible for OBI to deliver relief supplies and meals to those in need. So Operation Blessing used a brigade of motorcycles to infiltrate into the hardest hit areas with water and relief supplies.

To transport relief supplies to some of the hardest hit areas of southern Mexico, Operation Blessing was able to secure the use of an Aeromar cargo plane. Staff and volunteers loaded the aircraft with donated food, water, and other essential supplies.

Boats are used to deliver aid along the river in Peru.

Boats Bring Relief in Belén
The district of Belén, Peru, is built on the banks of the Itaya River. For about half the year the river overflows its banks, flooding the entire region and making small boats the only means of transportation. Operation Blessing’s local office, in the neighboring city of Iquitos, conducts a wide variety of projects in Belén, including a school nutrition program, community health worker program, medical brigades, new housing construction, microenterprises, and more. These projects require Operation Blessing staff and volunteers to frequent the water taxis that offer the easiest transportation around and across the Itaya.

Motorcyles are used to reach remote, mountain villages in Haiti.

Motocross in Haiti
In Haiti, Operation Blessing’s projects are widespread and often in remote and hard to reach areas. Roads are frequently dirt or gravel and in poor condition. Luckily, OB Haiti’s Dora Nemere is an accomplished motocross rider. She uses her motorcycle to navigate the treacherous routes in between Operation Blessing projects while having a little fun along the way!

From the Field

Getting Water to Santa Fé

hen all the streams and reservoirs dried up around the mountainside village of Santa Fé, Honduras, the villagers were left to retrieve water from stagnant pools and other temporary and unsanitary sources. Drinking this water resulted in widespread illness throughout the isolated community. Thanks to you, Operation Blessing located a source of safe water higher up the mountainside and constructed a durable network of piping to deliver that water down to the village. Then, we constructed a massive water reservoir fitted with a state-of-the-art chlorinator to ensure that the water is safe to drink. Finally, OBI ran faucets into every single home in the village so that families will no longer have to walk long distances just to access this life giving liquid. Because of your generosity, the village of Santa Fé, Honduras, will have unlimited access to safe, delicious water.

Ground Zero: Volcán de Fuego


Weeks after the eruption, many have moved on from the tragedy still unfolding in Guatemala. To date, 110 people have lost their lives and 197 are still missing. Because of your generosity, Operation Blessing is still on the ground working to help the survivors of this disaster by distributing food and hygiene kits as well as providing medicine and support to local hospitals.

A Healthy Dose of Nutrition

MEXICO – It started as the response to an emergency need — families reeling from a round of earthquakes off the Pacific coast were in need of food. Because of our faithful partners, OB Mexico established mobile kitchens to help meet the immediate needs of hurting people. And the mobile food kitchens grew into a nutrition program to help families in Union Hidalgo learn better food practices to ward off health problems like diabetes, hypertension, and obesity.

Now, Operation Blessing sponsors biweekly workshops for women in the community. Each workshop lasts for a total of four weeks and has a class size of up to 10 women. These women learn the value of nutrition and are introduced to foods and recipes to contribute to healthier eating for healthier living.

One workshop focuses entirely on the composition, nutritional value, and importance of salads. Students are challenged to create their best salads as part of a balanced diet. The results are a far cry from the fried food that comprised the majority of the community’s diet before this program started!

Many of the women participating in these workshops run local kitchens, thus transforming the community from the inside out with better cooking and eating practices. These small changes can have a big impact on the health of men, women, and children of Union Hidalgo.

Rushing Aid to Fuego Volcano Victims

GUATEMALA – On Sunday, June 3, Fuego, one of Central America’s most active volcanoes, erupted without warning. Clouds of gray ash billowed thousands of feet into the air and a deadly pyroclastic flow sped down the mountainside. At least 100 people were killed, hundreds more were missing, and thousands have been displaced from their homes.

Disaster workers near Fuego volcano.

Thanks to your support, Operation Blessing’s Guatemala office immediately sprang into action to bring relief to the victims of this disaster. First, OB Guatemala staff began putting together emergency aid kits containing food and hygiene supplies. In partnership with the Guatemalan Army and the Asociación Nacional de Municipalidades (ANAM), these kits will be distributed to residents who have been evacuated to shelters.

Operation Blessing will also be distributing 1,400 respirators to firefighters, and over 30,000 facemasks to area residents. These respirators and facemasks will help filter out the harmful volcanic ash that continues to fall. This ash can damage the lungs if breathed in, so these masks are the first line of defense to keep people safe.

Preparing face masks for volcano survivors.

In addition, OBI teams are preparing mobile kitchens to feed the firefighters and first responders who are still working to rescue survivors.

Disaster relief kitchen workers.

It’s only through partnership with you that these disaster response operations are made possible! Thank you for your support and we ask for your continued prayer for all those affected by Fuego’s eruption.

UPDATE JUNE 13, 2018

Over the past week and a half, thanks to our faithful partners, Operation Blessing has continued to serve Fuego Volcano victims with critical food, hygiene items, masks, medical supplies, and support for disaster workers. In addition, we have expanded our efforts to include areas like providing clean water, solar lights, medical care, and mattresses to shelters throughout the area.

We’ve also become a distribution point for partner organizations sending additional supplies and funds such as Samaritan’s Purse and Operation Blessing Mexico.

Thanks to the support of our faithful partners like you, we’ve been on the ground since day one of the tragedy, and continue to bless thousands of victims throughout the area.

A Happy Home After Hurricane Heartache

TEXAS – Eight-year-old Gabe lived in a two-bedroom house in Texas with his mother and two older sisters, Payton and Penelope. He lives with autism, but had a safe home until Hurricane Harvey barreled through their community.

Floodwaters rushed into the humble house as the unprecedented storm dumped heavy rains on the entire region. Since the swirling waters made it impossible to evacuate on foot or by car, a boat rescued Gabe’s family. But as they floated away from their home, they didn’t know how they would recover.

Gabe and his family see their restored home for the first time.

Peggy is a single mother to her three children and does the best she can to provide for them. But when the hurricane hit, she had no insurance, and lacked the resources they needed to rebuild. Their local church took up an offering to purchase a portable building, similar to a shed, for the family to live in. It became the place they called home — and they were so grateful for it — but it wasn’t a permanent solution.

Once the schools reopened, Gabe and his sisters would sleep in the portable building behind their house, using the remnants of their home for the shower and restroom. Mold grew everywhere, but there was nothing they could do.

Peggy cried out to God for help, and as she did, someone nominated her for the Project 40 Program — a special partnership between Operation Blessing and Cathedral Church. Without giving Peggy and her children too many details, OBI offered to help. Little did the family know just how much work Operation Blessing partners and others would put into their house! Gabe’s family had been selected for an Extreme Blessing — a special project where Operation Blessing and partners completely restore and refurnish a home for a family in need.

Peggy gives a hug to an Operation Blessing volunteer.

Volunteers helped gut the building and hang new sheetrock. They finished the repairs and added furniture and even décor to the home without Gabe or his family having any idea just how much work they were doing.

When they were invited to return to their home, Gabe stood with his mother and sisters, excited and surprised. He held his mother’s hand as people they had never met held balloons and signs welcoming them home. Perfect strangers had come to help them in their time of need, leaving Peggy and her family with tears in their eyes.

They walked together through the joyful crowd and opened the door to their home to see what work had been completed. “It doesn’t even look like our house,” Peggy exclaimed. “Wow!” Inside, their mold-infested, dilapidated house had been completely restored! They were home again. “Thank you, Jesus,” Peggy breathed a prayer in relief as she hugged young Gabe.

“Faith will see us through,” she read from a new wall hanging in their home, “and that’s exactly what has happened.”

“I love it!” Gabe said. He jumped onto the new couch with a grin.

The family toured the house one room at a time, taking it all in with exclamations of gratitude and happy tears. Gabe’s sisters have bunk beds in their room, but he didn’t know what to expect in the room he shares with his mother.

Gabe in his very own new bed.

When he opened the door, he started shouting with excitement. For the first time ever, he had his own bed. His name hung above the headboard in white letters, and as he scrambled onto the bed, he hugged the Mario toy that was waiting for him.

“This house was a wreck. I cannot believe you turned it into something so beautiful!” Peggy said after the tour, wiping away tears. “Thank y’all, and God bless y’all.”

When asked his favorite part of their new home, Gabe quickly answered, “My bed!”

Thank you, OBI partners. You made it possible for Operation Blessing — alongside long-time partner The Home Depot and grants from The Rebuild Texas Fund, Cleveland Indians Charities, MLB, and Jay & Hannah Bruce — to welcome Gabe and his family home.

Bill Horan Retires, Gordon Robertson Voted President of OBI

A message from Gordon Robertson:

Thank you for your dedicated support of Operation Blessing International. I deeply appreciate your compassion that reaches out to people in desperate need throughout the world.

Because you are such a good friend of this ministry, I want you to know that Bill Horan is retiring as OBI’s president. Bill has diligently served in this capacity since 2002, and we sincerely thank him for his years of faithful service. I thought you might like to see his letter of retirement. Please join me in praying that God will abundantly bless Bill as he begins this new chapter in his life.

I have had the privilege of working with Operation Blessing International over the years, and have served on the Board of Directors for OBI since 2002. I can say with great excitement that I look forward to working with you, in an even greater way in the future, as the Board of Directors has appointed me to be OBI’s new president.

When my father, Pat Robertson, founded Operation Blessing in 1978, he was inspired by the words of Isaiah 58:10-11: If you offer your food to the hungry and satisfy the needs of the afflicted, then your light shall rise in the darkness. … The Lord will guide you continually.

Forty years later, Operation Blessing has grown into a global humanitarian organization renowned for its integrity, creativity, and efficiency. It’s amazing to see how generous partners like you have helped millions of people worldwide.

With your ongoing prayers and support, Operation Blessing will continue to be a strategic force in compassionate relief—feeding the hungry, rescuing disaster victims, and helping the needy in America and over 100 other countries. We also plan to expand our medical outreaches in places like Africa, where millions of people living in poverty have no health care, doctors, or surgeons.

The need is great—yet as we trust the Lord, He will fulfill His promise to guide us continually.

Thank you for your faithful support, and may God bless you.

Sincerely in Christ,

Gordon P. Robertson

Extracurricular Activities are Changing Lives

HAITI – Students from a remote fishing village in Haiti have the unique opportunity to gain an outstanding education thanks to your support of Operation Blessing’s ENLA school. In addition to offering strong academic classes, ENLA provides an assortment of extracurricular activities to further challenge the students’ young minds and bodies, teaching important, life-changing skills. Over the past few months these programs have continued to expand and offer new and exciting opportunities for the students.

Tang Soo Do

In the area of martial arts, our Tang Soo Do after school program has grown in leaps and bounds this year. Although training began in November 2016, it got off to a slow start due to lack of equipment. But in summer 2017 the team received the supplies they needed to begin working towards their first belt test. Throughout their training the students gained focus, self-discipline, confidence, physical strength, and coordination. One year after the program began, the exam took place. All of the students involved excelled, receiving a certificate and their coveted yellow belts. These belts qualified them to take part in the Haiti Tang Soo Do national championships.

The team traveled to Port-au-Prince for the national event, which also celebrated the 15th anniversary of Haiti’s Tang Soo Do federation. There the ENLA students were warmly welcomed by the president and vice president of the federation into the Tang Soo Do family.

They had no idea how they would fare at their first competition, but were excited to participate. In the end, they won two gold and two silver medals, and the coach won in his master category. As a team, they came in second, taking home a large trophy to commemorate their performance. The students did great, remaining calm and confident throughout this new challenge, and demonstrating the positive life-skills they’ve acquired throughout their martial arts training.


Operation Blessing’s extracurricular soccer program faced and overcame several challenges as well. They scheduled their first away game against a club called Don Bosco. For some of the kids on the team it would be their first opportunity to leave their home town. The players didn’t have cleats or uniforms, but the coaches overcame that obstacle by borrowing the needed supplies.

When they arrived to the game, they looked great, like a real team, but faced another challenge. The other team appeared much older and the players were bigger. The opposing coach apologized for the confusion. He had brought a team from an older age category. However, the ENLA team decided to go forward with the game and surprised everyone, including themselves, by tying the score 1-1.

The team handled the pressure of the competition like champs, showing that they had learned the important skills of teamwork, determination, resilience, and excellence in the face of difficulties. In December they played a rematch soccer game against the Don Bosco team on their home field and tied again. The event included music, fun, and entertainment for the students who came out to support their team.

PE Class

For all the students at ENLA, including those who aren’t involved in Tang Soo Do or soccer, Wednesdays provide a highly anticipated opportunity to learn physical and life skills in PE class. The fishing community surrounding the school includes some very athletic girls and boys who love the chance to try a variety of sports. They do so under the instruction of their well-trained PE instructor, who also coaches an OBI baseball program nearby. These classes will help provide excellent future candidates for the existing programs, and might well inspire new extracurricular activities too.


On the less physical and more cerebral front, OBI’s ENLA school forms young minds through an after school chess program. Compared to the newer programs at the school, chess is now a well-established extracurricular activity. The chess team has had several highly competitive meets already this school year, and although they had two ties and one loss so far, the students continue to show progress in their skills.

The chess program provides an amazing opportunity for kids to learn higher level thinking, logic, and strategizing, preparing their minds for future learning challenges. In fact, the ENLA chess team now includes a number of students who have graduated from ENLA’s primary program and now attend an upper school, for which they are given housing and scholarships by Operation Blessing partners. Including them on the chess team provides a great opportunity to reunite our current students with their old friends.

During their home match against Nid Douillet, the ENLA students showed the opposing team the nearby Lake Azuéi and their village of Medan Belize. The school also served them local tilapia fish for lunch. Through this experience the chess team demonstrated good sportsmanship and expanded their horizons by interacting with students from a different area. For their last match of 2017, the president of the chess federation visited, and he found the ENLA students very impressive. In hopes of continuing to equip the students with the skills they’ll need to win upcoming matches, ENLA recently organized a chess camp for them to gain practice and acquire new strategies.

Thank you for your continued support of Operation Blessing, which allows us to bring these life-changing extracurricular opportunities to the children of Haiti. Tang Soo Do, soccer, and chess may or may not be a part of these students’ futures, but the life skills, confidence, and lessons they’ve learned through the programs will stay with them, producing positive results for the rest of their lives.