by Becky Brand, Ingathering Coordinator.

Thanksgiving Ingathering – what is it?

I like to think of the Ingathering as an Iowa Celebration of Giving. United Methodists from across the state provide small relief kits that will be given to people in the United States and around the world who suffer from poverty, war and natural disasters. While these kits don’t look like much by our standards, they make a huge impact on the lives of the recipients. The supplies that we buy for a kit with our own hands and resources will help someone who is suffering in a way most of us cannot begin to imagine. The Ingathering also supports six very important mission projects with cash donations. It is amazing to see what Iowa United Methodists can do when we pool our efforts!

When we share from our abundance we are acting justly and reflecting our desire to serve God.

Collegiate/Wesley and Ingathering 2014

MISSION STORE RETURNS OCTOBER 26. Our Sunday School children will be provided with banks so that they can save cash to purchase kit items for the Ingathering. On Sunday October 26, each Sunday School class will visit the mission store in Wesley Hall where the children can shop for items to fill school kits, health kits and layette kits.

NOTE FOR EVERYONE AGE 12 – 100.  The Mission Store is for children 3 yr. old through 5th grade. They will be sending about 100 kits to the Ingathering. This year’s challenge is for the rest of us to step up our giving and match what the kids give! Look over the list of kits and pick one (or more!) to give. Build a kit by yourself or work with others to build several kits together!

UMCOR depot

Where will our kits go?

Our kits will go to two different missions:

UMCOR Kits will be sent to UMCOR Depot in Baldwin, LA, where they will be prepared for shipment in the US and around the world. They must have kits ready to send at a moment’s notice to victims of poverty, war and natural disasters. CUMC/WF will send school kits, sewing kits, health kits and birthing kits. Baby sweaters/jackets and empty school bags are also needed.


IOWA-NIGERIA PARTNERSHIP (INP) Kits will be sent to Nigeria. For 25 years, the Iowa United Methodists have covenanted with the Nigeria United Methodist Church to share in the planning, promoting and funding of agreed upon programs and projects. The primary focus of the INP is to assist the Nigerian church with their educational pursuits. CUMC/WF will send layette kits, book kits, dorm kits, lit kits, birthing kits, knitting kits, and tailoring kits.

Important information on putting a kit together

Kits traveling to foreign countries must go through Customs. If they find one item that is not supposed to be in a kit, they can reject an entire sea container with over 12,000 kits! It is very important that everyone follow these guidelines:

  • Only pack items requested for each kit.
  • All items must be new and unwashed.
  • Do not pre-wash anything.
  • Do not include items that have political slogans, patriotic icons, emblems or religious symbols (like crosses or flags).
  • Do not put $$ for postage or toothpaste in the kits. Please label and put in the offering plate.

Supply lists for kits CUMC/WF

Please have kits at the church no later than October 26! Click the kit titles below to see a list of supplies and instructions for putting them together.


UMCOR Birthing Kits (UMCOR) provide sanitary equipment for midwives to use when assisting with the delivery of babies born in the bush, in huts and alongside the road in many areas of the world.
  • 1 hotel-size bar of soap (1 oz. and up)
  • 1 square yard of clear 4-mil plastic sheeting
  • 1 clean single edge razor blade (wrapped in cardboard)
  • 2 flannelette receiving blankets, 30” x 30” or 32” x 32”
  • 1 pair of latex gloves
  • 3 pieces of cotton string, each 12” long.
Place all items in a gallon-size zip lock bag. (Value $8 + $2 postage)
Please note: INP also has a birthing kit that some may prefer. It has several items that are only sold in bulk, so it is ideal for groups or individuals who are interested in providing several kits. Please label your kits for UMCOR or INP so that we send them to the right place.


Health Kits (UMCOR) help disaster victims reclaim their dignity and self-respect and are also used as teaching tools with children. When people can maintain personal hygiene, their overall health improves.
  • 1 new hand towel (15 x 25” up to 17 x 27”)
  • 1 new wash cloth
  • 1 bath size bar of soap in wrapper (at least 3 oz)
  • 1 new toothbrush in original sealed wrapper (no child sized)
  • 6 band aids (3/4” size wide)
  • 1 large, sturdy comb (not pocket size)
  • 1 nail file or fingernail clipper (no emery boards or toenail clippers
  • $1.00 to cover the cost of toothpaste (do not buy toothpaste.)
Lay out towel & lay washcloth flat in center. Place rest of items on top of washcloth. Fold sides of towel to cover items. Fold 1 end of towel so it covers all items. Grasp bundle of items and roll over rest of towel tightly. Place tightly rolled bundle in zip lock bag. (Value: $12 plus $2 shipping)

School Kits (UMCOR) In countries where children don’t have books, school supplies or classrooms, these kits may be their only educational resource.
  • 3 notebooks, (8 x 11”, wide ruled, 210-250 sheets total, spiral or bound) Please note: Wal-Mart notebooks are unacceptable due to the US flags on their covers.
  • 1 box of 24 crayons
  • 6 unsharpened pencils with erasers
  • 1 2 ½” eraser
  • 1 blunt scissors (metal)
  • 1 30 cm. metric ruler
  • 1 hand pencil sharpener
  • 1 school bag made to UMCOR specifications
Place all items in school bag. (If you do not have a school bag, please place all items in a plastic bag and bring to the church no later than Oct. 19 so we can be sure we have a enough bags made for the supplies.) (Value: $11 plus $2 postage)

Sewing Kits (UMCOR) These kits are used in sewing classes. Cottage industries often grow out of these classes.
  • 3 yd. cotton or cotton-blend fabric (one piece)
  • 1 new spool matching thread (medium to large)
  • 1 package of hand sewing needles
  • 1 sewing scissors (Please note: Cheap craft scissors are not a good choice as they do not cut fabric very well.)
  • 5 – 8 matching flat buttons (on card or fastened together)
Wrap sewing notions in fabric. Seal in zip lock bag. (Value: $18 + $2 postage)

UMCOR needs Extra Home made School Bags. Directions and fabric can be found in mission closet across from the office. (Value: $3.00)

UMCOR also needs Baby Sweaters/Jackets, size small, to put in UMCOR layette kits. They can be purchased or homemade and must open in the front. (Value: $6.00)

Knitting Kit (INP) Nigerian women learn to knit at the Leadership Training Centers.  This skill allows them to provide clothing for their children as well as items to sell in the market.
  • 2  7-oz. skeins of yarn (acrylic worsted, solid color, same dye lot)
  • 1 pair 10” knitting needles, size 8
  • 1 crochet hook, size E
  • 2 yarn needles, size 16
  • 1 pair small scissors, size 4 or 5
Place needles in skein of yarn and place all supplies in appropriate size zip lock bag. (Value: $15 plus $2 postage)

Lit Kits (Literature Kit)(INP) This kit will provide supplies for adults who take literacy classes in their church to learn to read and write in the Hausa language. Because of high motivation to be literate, these adults take classes seriously and within a few months are proficient in these skills and are able to read the Bible they receive for graduation.

  • 1 spiral notebook (wide line), 70 sheets (Please note: Wal-Mart notebooks are unacceptable due to the US flags on their covers.)
  • 1 package 3” x 5” white index cards
  • 2 pencils #2 with eraser
  • 1 Dry Erase board ( approx. 8”x11”)
  • 1 hand pencil sharpener
  • 1 package Dry Erase crayons (8)

Place in appropriate-size zip lock bag. (Value $11 + $2 shipping)

Dorm Kits (INP) are a combo health/school kits that are given to boarding students at the church-sponsored secondary school.
  • 1 new bath towel (24” to 27” by 44” to 52”)
  • 1 washcloth
  • 6-8” comb, wide tooth, or hair pick
  • 1 bath sized bar of soap in wrapper
  • 1 toothbrush in original sealed package
  • 2 spiral notebooks (10.5” x 8”, wide rule, 3 hole, approx 70-80 sheets) (Please note: Wal-Mart notebooks are unacceptable due to the US flags on their covers.)
  • 6 unsharpened pencils with erasers
  • 1 hand pencil sharpener
Wrap all items in the towel and secure with two heavy rubber bands. Place in appropriate sized ziplock bag. (Value $14 + $2 for shipping +$1 for toothpaste)

Nigeria Birthing Kits (INP)

  • Plastic disposable drop cloth (like used in painting) 9’ x 12’
  • 2 pieces of cotton string 18” long (not thread)
  • 1 pair vinyl gloves
  • 2 single edge razor blades (wrap in cardboard, tape shut)
  • 4 – 4” x 4” gauze squares
  • 4 – 2” x 2” gauze squares 6 alcohol swabs
  • 1 roll clear flexible adhesive tape, about 1” x 10 yards
  • 1 tube antibiotic ointment (1 oz)

Place items in gallon-size ziplock bag. (Value $10 + $2 for shipping)

Please note: Several items in this kit are only sold in bulk so it is ideal for groups or individuals who are interested in providing several kits. UMCOR also has a birthing kit that some may prefer. Most of the supplies for the UMCOR kit can be purchased in smaller quantities. Please label your kits for UMCOR or INP so that we send them to the right place.  

Layette Kits (INP) are highly prized by new mothers who deliver their babies at the UM church clinics.
  • 2 cloth diapers
  • 2 diaper pins
  • 1 receiving blanket
  • 1 undershirt or Onesie (small size)
  • 1 light weight gown or sleeper (small size)
  • 1 baby washcloth
Wrap all items in the blanket and secure with diaper pins. Place in ziplock bag. (Value: $20 plus $2 shipping)

Tailoring Kits (INP) allow Nigerian women to increase their sewing skills leading to more income and a better standard of living.
  • 1 package hand sewing needles
  • 1 package non-rusting straight pins
  • 1 tape measure with centimeters (5/8” x 60”)
  • 1 quality 8″ all purpose/sewing scissors (Please note: Cheap craft scissors are not a good choice as they do not cut fabric very well.)
  • 1 card white buttons (at least 6, ½”, flat)
  • 1 spool white thread (200 – 300 yd)
  • 1 spool dark thread (200 – 300 yd)
Place all items in appropriate size zip lock bag. (Value: $14 plus $2 shipping)

Book Kits (INP)Secondary/High School, purchase 5 new books (or used books with no torn pages, cover intact, no writing) for the kit. Suggested subjects: world biographies; science fiction, biology, African life, peoples, culture, history, animals; fiction and non-fiction appropriate to teenagers in African setting, books by African/Nigerian authors and classic books by famous authors..

For Seminary Students studying at Banyam Theological Seminary, purchase 5 new books or cull through theological books (newer than 1980) that deal with religious issues, basic study books like Barclay’s Commentary, adult Bible study books, Lenten/Advent study series, renown theologians as Barth, Bonhoeffer, Bultman,  Moltmann, Willimon, etc. and present-day United Methodist authors. Books dealing with U.S. theology, religious issue and religious novels are not helpful.

Place in appropriate size zip lock bag or box. Label secondary or theological books. (Value: $35 for kits with 5 new books; $5 value for 5 gently used books + $2 shipping.)

Cash Needed

UMCOR Depot, a 46,000 square foot warehouse located in Baldwin, LA., is the headquarters for UMCOR’s relief supply operations. With the help of over 2,000 volunteers, approximately $4-5 million in supplies are shipped from this location annually.

Heifer International gives individuals in need an animal that will provide food and an income and trains them to care for the animal. Each recipient promises to “give back” by passing an offspring of their animal on to a neighbor in need, which causes a positive ripple effect throughout the entire community. 

  • To make a donation make checks payable to CUMC/WF and write “Heifer” on memo line or envelope.
  • To learn more:

Self-Help International is dedicated to helping people in Nicaragua and Ghana. Two major projects are giving women loans to start small-scale businesses and training people to grow and process quality protein maize, a higher-protein corn variety that alleviates malnutrition in young children.

  • To make a donation make checks payable to CUMC/WF and write “Self-Help” on memo line or envelope.
  • To learn more:

Church World Service works to eradicate hunger and poverty and to promote peace and justice. Their areas of focus are hunger and malnutrition, emergencies, refugees and immigration, children, and water.

  • To make a donation make checks payable to CUMC/WF and write “CWS” on memo line or envelope.
  • For learn more:

P.E.T. (personal energy transportation) are sturdy, hand cranked mobility carts designed for rough terrain. They give people who have lost the use of their legs, from disease, birth defects, accidents and landmines, the gift of mobility and a chance to become accepted and  productive members of society.

  • To make a donation make checks payable to CUMC/WF and write “PET” on memo line or envelope.
  • To learn more:

INP Cash for A3  Artemisia annua anamed” is an herbal plant. Its leaves are used to make a tea that relieves the symptoms of malaria. A3 seed kits are distributed to Rural Health Clinics and Hospitals, agriculture programs and local UMCs in Nigeria.

  • To make a donation make checks payable to CUMC/WF and write “INP –A3”  on memo line or envelop
  • To learn more: There isn’t one central webpage, so search on the web for “Iowa-Nigeria project” and “Artemisia annua anamed” for multiple websites.

Cash for postage & toothpaste It is recommended that we send $2.00 per kit to help pay the shipping bills. Also $1.00 per health kit is needed to buy toothpaste. UMCOR purchases toothpaste closer to the shipping time to avoid problems with expiration dates.

  • To make a donation make checks payable to CUMC/WF and write “postage”  on memo line or envelope.

Iowa Ingathering Schedule

Saturday, November 1, 2014 – Asbury UMC, Webster City (North Central Site)
8:00 – 10:30 AM – Rolls & coffee; Check-in kits, funds, & in-kind gifts
8:30 AM – Mission displays
10:00 AM – Worship service
11:00 AM – Quilt auction
12:00 PM – Lunch available