Emergency Relief Program

On every continent, there are communities in crisis where people’s lives have been severely or totally disrupted and where people have been forced to leave their homes and live as internally displaced communities or as refugees. The causes of these disruptions include natural or human made disasters and/or oppressive, unjust or ill-advised socio-economic, political and environmental policies and practices. The consequences of such disruptions are hardest on impoverished and marginalized peoples. PWRDF provides emergency relief to world-wide humanitarian disasters that severely disrupt peoples lives and negatively impact on their ability to cope.


Action By Churches Together (ACT) Alliance

PWRDF is a member of the ACT Alliance–a global, ecumenical alliance of 125 churches and agencies engaged in humanitarian relief, development, and advocacy.  In almost any emergency, one or more ACT members were already working in the community before the international press came and will be there long after they have left. ACT members start the emergency response on the day of the disaster, providing life-saving food, shelter, water and sanitation.

PWRDF uses the ACT mechanism to channel almost all of its emergency response.  PWRDF  gives priority to emergency appeals for needs in countries of the south (Africa, Middle east, Asia/Pacific and Latin America/Caribbean). Within these countries, PWRDF gives priority to forgotten emergencies and appeals that are under subscribed.

The members of ACT are Protestant and Orthodox churches and their related agencies, drawn from the membership of the World Council of Churches and The Lutheran World Federation.

The Canadian Foodgrains Bank


PWRDF sometimes responds to food-specific emergencies (droughts, famines) through the Canadian Foodgrains Bank (CFGB), an ecumenical agency dedicated to end global hunger. The projects we support:

  • Provide food assistance to people with immediate food needs;
  • Work with communities to improve food security (provide food for themselves in the longer-term) through improved agricultural techniques and income generations; and
  • Help families and communities improve their nutrition.

CFGB supported projects receive matching funds from the Department of Foreign Affairs, International Trade and Development Canada (DFATD), often at a ratio of 4:1.

Canadian Churches in Action

PWRDF is a founding member of Canadian Churches in Action (CCA), an informal alliance of 10 Canadian church-based agencies, all of whom are also members of CFGB.  CCA has enabled PWRDF to collaborate with other member agencies on non-food emergency responses, such as shelter provision following the 2010 Pakistan floods.  This work is enhanced by accessing grants from agencies such as CIDA, the Manitoba Council for International Cooperation (MCIC) and the Saskatchewan Council for International Cooperation (SCIC).

Recent Emergency Response Stories:

Life in the Syrian Refugee Camps

Emergency Response Stories

The ACT Alliance has produced a new video about the life of Syrian refugees who have been displaced by the violence in that country.  PWRDF […]

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Calgary Flood Response 2 Months In

Canada Stories, Emergency Response Stories, Stories by Region, Stories by Theme
Downtown Calgary during the floods. Photo: Ryan L. C. Quan

On June 21st, southern Alberta was deluged by a record breaking flood and over 100,000 people in Calgary alone were evacuated from their homes, my […]

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Syrian Refugee Crisis Deepens

Emergency Response Stories, Featured, Refugees and Migrants Stories
A worker pounds a peg into the ground as he and other workers erect new tents in the Zaatari Refugee Camp, located near Mafraq, Jordan. Opened in July, 2012, the camp is now the second largest refugee camp in the world. Members of the ACT Alliance are active in the camp providing essential items and services. Photo: Paul Jeffrey/ACT

In June 2013, the UN’s refugee agency (UNHCR) launched the largest humanitarian appeal in history””US$5 billion””for the crisis in Syria where by the end of […]

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PWRDF Responds to the Lac Mégantic Train Explosion

Emergency Response Stories
Lac Megantic Burning Photo: Wikipedia Commons

PWRDF has announced a solidarity grant of $5,000 through the Anglican Diocese of Quebec, which will forward the grant to the Catholic Archdiocese of Sherbrooke […]

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