Collecting Scrap Metal for Haiti

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Scrap metal from West Michigan is helping rebuild a building used by the Christian Reformed Church (CRC) in Haiti. The structure was destroyed in the 2010 earthquake.

Scrap metal drive volunteers took in donations that raised $4,700 for a mission trip to Haiti.

Photo by Jack Nyenhuis

Hanley CRC in Grandville, Mich., was looking for a way to raise cash for a mission trip to help with construction in Haiti.

Since some members have businesses linked to scrap metal resale, the metal drive fit. In February, one business placed dumpsters on the church property to receive scrap metal, another business owner trucked metal from donors who answered Hanley’s newspaper advertisement, and another gave steel shavings. Elements such as copper, brass, and aluminum, as well as large metal items that included vehicle body parts and appliances were traded in for $4,700 in cash.

With an additional $2,700 raised from a soup supper, 15 Hanley adults and youth spent a week in March helping to rebuild the Program for Diaconal Formation building used for training deacons and working with community leaders. The team was the third one this year since construction began in January.

All churches have their own best way to raise mission trip funds, said Mary Dykstra from the Christia n Reformed World Relief Committee, which has joined Christian Reformed World Missions (CRWM) in the Port-au-Prince project. “Every church has things that just work for that church, and [they] can keep building on that strength,” Dykstra said.

CRWM missionary Howard Van Dam said the structure, expected to be ready this summer, conforms to new construction techniques for seismic capacity.

No one was injured when the three-story building partially collapsed. The six-member staff has been working from temporary quarters.

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