December 2020 -
Merry Christmas, I'm sure everyone would agree that 2020 has been a year that none of us will ever forget. The Covid-19 Pandemic has impacted all our lives in a negative way. We have lost many sponsors this year due to financial reversals because of the Pandemic, however we continue to trust in the Lord to bless our ministry and He does!
The refugee camps in Thailand have been under mandatory lockdown since early in the year, which impacted our ability to get money in to our sponsored children. Some aid organizations were allowed to enter the camps in May so our border support contacts were able to take money in for our children. We were able to send 2 more disbursements in July and September. We are hoping to be able to get one more disbursement to the children before the end of the year. We have a great support system set up for both refugee camps where our sponsored children reside. We are continuing to send in all gifts sponsors buy for their children. The children and their families are thrilled with the gifts of love. I can communicate with both of our refugee camp contacts via Facebook and e-mail so that has helped us tremendously to keep updated on the situation in the camps.
Total disbursements so far has been $30,690.00 and we are planning to send another $18,000.00 in the next couple weeks. We currently have 394 children who have received sponsorship funds this year. We are in year 26 of our ministry and are very grateful that God has blessed our ministry over the years. We appreciate all your prayers and monetary support. Without you we would not be able to continue our outreach to these precious Karen refugee children. Thank you!
God Bless you all,
Rick and Betty
December 2019 -
Click the link below to read Betty and Rick's end of the year letter
2019 Year End Letter
December 2018 -
You can view the letter which includes pictures from summer visits.at the following link:
2018 Year End Letter
December 2016 -
2016 Comes To A Close ~ Looking Forward To 2017
The year 2016 has been an interesting year for us.
Dozens of our refugee children and their families have been re-settled to other countries under the United Nations High Commission on Refugees resettlement program.
Many have come to the United States and we are keeping in contact with some of them.
Many of the children I have known from birth are now grown up and having children of their own.
I have been asked to name several of the newborns, and it is nice to follow the children through the years.
I am in contact with both of the refugee camps and hear from our camp contacts frequently.
We now have 376 children being actively sponsored by many different sponsors.
The sponsors have enjoyed receiving letters from their children in the refugee camps, and of course, the children are thrilled when they hear from their sponsors.
We are in the process of mailing out the Zip Blessing gift bags which sponsors have made for their children.
We have disbursed over $52,000.00 to the children so far in 2016 and are planning to send approximately $18,000.00 more by years end.
Due to medical issues, we will not be able to travel to Thailand in January; however we are praying that we will be able to go by May, before the Monsoon season starts.
God is in control and we are totally trusting Him to guide our decisions.
Even if we are not able to visit the camps, we will continue sending the money, gifts and letters to our camp contacts and they will see that the children receive what is due them.
We are grateful to all our sponsors and prayer warriors for helping us to continue this outreach to the families on the Thailand/Burma border.
God has a plan for us for this next year and we are prayerfully seeking His guidance.
Have a blessed and Merry Christmas,
Rick and Betty
March 2016 -
Click here to read the Summary of Betty and Rick's trip to the refugee camps in January of this year.
Visit our Child Sponsor page to see the latest information on children needing sponsors.
December 2015 -
This has been a very good year for International Assistance Group.
We have added several new sponsors and now have 474 children sponsored.
We have been able to disburse over $42,000.00 so far in 2015 and will disburse approximately $15,000.00 more before the end of the year.
Many families have been re-settled this year through the United Nations High Commission on Refugees re-settlement program.
Three hundred families were re-settled to U.S.A. from both camps in September.
There was heavy flooding in Mae Rah Moe camp and the report that we received was that 30 homes had been washed away.
A generous donation from our church was given to us to help the families re-build their homes.
The children are thrilled when they receive letters from their sponsors.
I have told the children that the sponsors also love to receive letters from them, resulting in more children now writing letters.
The job of translating all these letters is very time consuming.
We are blessed to have people in place in both camps who will translate them before they are sent to me.
The children's letters usually come to me in packs of 100+ and I have to match them to their sponsors and get them sent out.
What a blessing it is to read all these precious letters!
I know the sponsors are also blessed as they read them and are able to get a little glimpse into the lives of the children they sponsor.
We will be leaving January 11th for Thailand and will return on the 28th, and are asking for prayers that both camps would be open to us.
We have already received assurance that we can get into the high mountain camp of Mae Rah Moe.
I have sent a request to the Karen Refugee Committee asking permission to enter Mae La refugee camp.
This is the camp we were not allowed to enter last year.
We have over 200 sponsored children in that camp and we would love to be able to visit with them and get new pictures for their sponsors.
We will be taking gifts of Zip Blessing Bags from sponsors and others, as well as clothing made by the Dorcas ladies of Pleasant Grove Baptist Church.
Thank you so much for making it possible for us to bless so many families.
Your prayers for our trip are greatly appreciated.
In His Service,
Betty and Rick
January 2015 -
Click here to read the Summary of Betty and Rick's 2014 trip into Thailand
January 2014 -
Blessed New Year wishes from International Assistance Group, Inc.
As a cost saving measure we will begin issuing receipts for donations at the end of each year unless you specifically request a receipt at the time of your donation.
Your year-end receipt for 2013 will be sent out via email (if we have your email address) and by regular mail if we don't have your email address.
Please be sure to review your receipt for accuracy and please let us know if there are any changes to your mailing address or email.
Thanks so much for helping to make a difference in the lives of these refugee children.
December 2013 -
Click to read 2013 Year End Update!
2013 Trip Summary
April 2012 -
Betty's November 2011 Trip Journal
April 2011 -
to view and article that gives insight into the continued struggle of the Burmese ethnic groups.
It is a tough time in many places of the world. It hurts the heart and soul.
February 2011 -
Betty's December 2010 Trip Journal is now online and ready for viewing.
April 2009 -
International Assistance Group, Inc. is moving! Beginning 5/1/09 the new mailing address for IAG will be:
International Assistance Group, Inc.
P.O. Box 1441
Dothan, AL 36302
February 2009 -
Betty's Journals from her February 2008 trip and her visit in November-December 2008 have now been posted.
We are still in the process of adding photos, so check them more than once!
August 2007 -
Betty's Journal from her March 2007 trip has now been posted. This edition features larger print along with photos.
Follow the link below to find links to all of her journals:
Access all of PeeTahThoo's Journals
July 31, 2003 -
REQUEST FOR ASSISTANCE RECEIVED FROM KAREN ADVENTIST ACADEMY
The Karen Adventist Academy is one of the schools located in a Karen Refugee Camp along the Moei River.
IAG has received a letter from the principal of the Karen Adventist Academy seeking financial assistance to help pay the small subsidy they give the teachers.
You can read the letter in it's entirety by clicking on the link below.
If you would like to help you can make a donation to IAG and designate your donation for the Karen Adventist Academy.
View Karen Adventist Academy Letter
January, 2003 -
We have started a new project helping to supply a remote Hospital that was in desperate need. You can read more about this project at the following link:
Mu Aye Puu Hospital Project Page
September 2002 -
SAH LAH /MAE KONG KHA CAMP SERIOUSLY DAMAGED BY FLOODING
One of the homes destroyed in the flooding
There are 2,388 families and 15.500 people who reside in the two combined camps.
On Monday September 2, 2002 at about 2:30 PM, serious flooding with landslides caused the river running through the camp to overflow and destroy 251 houses effecting 1,571 people.
233 more houses (effecting 1,510 people) were seriously damaged and 26 people killed.
Among those listed as dead are 9 who were lost and could not be found.
The ages of the dead range from 1 year old to 96 years old.
The people with undamaged homes took in all those who lost their homes and are living in very cramped conditions.
Because of damage to many homes, it is feared that many of them will quickly fall down or have to be totally re-built.
There is still a high risk of further landslides threatening 2 sections of the camp (approximately 176 houses.)
Due to this danger, the residents have been forced to stay in other homes, putting a strain on the host families.
Public buildings destroyed include 2 high schools, 8 primary schools, four reception centers, 2 medical clinics and the camp office.
In one report, we were told that a funeral was being held in one home and 12 students attending the funeral were drowned.
The photo on the left shows the sad job of transporting the injured from the flood area.
Monsoons will soon be over and we hope the re-building process can begin. I hope to visit the camp and give any assistance I can to those suffering losses due to the flooding.
October 2001 -
Betty's Journal from her May 2001 visit with the Karen is now completed and available for viewing online. You may use the link below to access "PeeTahThoo's" Journal.
May 2001 Journal
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IAG MAIN PAGE
P.O. Box 1441
Dothan, AL 36302