GPUSA raises funds nationally for the Christian community in the Middle East from American Knights and Dames largely through our Jerusalem Mite program. The Jerusalem Mite primarily targets local programs to help stabilize the Christian population in the Holy Land and re-build a foundation for its continued survival.
Some of the most critical needs of Christians in the Holy Land are:
- Healthcare - especially for the dedicated older Christians, because of the critical shortage of doctors and nurses in Christian enclaves outside Israelʼs barrier wall.
- Housing - especially in Gaza, where hundreds of Christian family homes have been decimated, most recently during Israelʼs 2014 military incursion into Gaza.
- Education - the long-term key to a better life for the next generation, as unemployment among young people in Palestine currently stands at 34%.
- Vocational Training - a necessity for the better-paying jobs for Christian families in the region.
- Refugee Relief - the food, shelter, clothing and care needed by hundreds of thousands of Christians who now live in refugee camps after fleeing the onslaughts of Islamic State and other extremist groups.
GPUSA seeks out trustworthy organizations that have been meeting these needs in the Middle East for many years and assesses their qualifications and transparency. We have found that church leaders of various denominations and church-affiliated programs often are effective in addressing Christian needs, so they receive the majority of our charitable funds at this time.
A few examples of how the Jerusalem Mite is meeting the needs of Christians at risk:
- Hospitals and clinics supported or operated by the Anglican Church, Roman Catholic Church, and Canon Andrew Whiteʼs Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation (FRRME) in Iraq.
- Burn-treatment facility opened at an Anglican hospital in Gaza
- Medical aid and supplies provided by the Franciscan Order
- Restoration of sub-standard homes by the Franciscan Order in Bethlehem
- Construction of new apartments in Jericho, Nazareth and Bethlehem for Christian families, built and subsidized by the Franciscan Order
- Schools operated by the Anglican Church, the Lutheran Church and the Latin (Roman Catholic) Patriarch
- Colleges and seminaries operated by the La Salle Brothers, the Anglican Church, the Latin Patriarch, the Armenian Patriarch, and the Coptic Patriarch (Patriarchs are the national heads of their churches).
- In addition to the Miteʼs funds for schools, Knights and Dames are personally funding scholarships for selected Christian students through our Raymond Davis Foundation, enabling young men and women to complete their high school or college education.
- Vocational Training
- The Episcopal Technological and Vocational Training Center (ETVTC) trains high school students in technology and in hotel service and management. 87% of its students have jobs or college acceptances upon graduation.
- Refugee Relief
- Clothing, water purification equipment, blankets and food for Syrian Christian refugees in Jordanʼs camps are provided by the Lutherans
- Funds for construction of, and food and supplies for, Christian refugee camps in Iraq are provided by the FRRME.
The chart below shows GPUSAʼs approximate distribution of funds for 2015 from donations raised through our Jerusalem Mite and Raymond Davis Foundation programs.