Crisis Relief Fund for Brazil Flood

Beginning April 29, 2024, the southernmost state of Brazil, Rio Grande do Sul, has been affected by severe flooding due to an inundation of rain, causing rives to swell beyond their banks and into roads, highways, homes, and cities.

Currently, NAB missionaries Lyndell Campbell-Réquia and the Jones family, all of whom live in the capital city of Porto Alegre, are safe and have not needed to relocate. Similarly, Chain of Love, an NAB partner organization serving at-risk children, is also safe, as they operate out of the more elevated areas outside Porto Alegre.

In response to this catastrophe, many churches are taking meals and supplies out to people. Many of those on higher ground are also serving as shelters to those who have been displaced. The NAB is sending out immediate funds directly to Lyndell and the Joneses for them to funnel to the churches to use for these relief efforts. We also invite you to give as you can to continue supporting these efforts.

Update: May 28

Lyndell writes:

First off, while we have had a lot of rain (44% of this year’s worth of rain just in May), water levels are slowly going down in some parts. They actually rise a bit, but then fall more, so it’s almost a “two steps ahead, one step back” process. In some places, the government officials are also using pumps to clear the water out. That means some people are able to reach their homes and start the cleaning process. You will see one of the ways we are using the offerings coming in from the NAB Brazil Flood disaster relief in this video.

Our church has become a distribution centre, offering drinking water, food baskets, mattresses and bedding, cleaning and hygiene supplies, and used clothing – all for free. Many people affected by the flooding visit on a daily basis.

Paulo’s and my access to get to church in Canoas (the city next to us) and to other cities close by is now much better. Just this week, the humanitarian corridor, which was originally built for emergency vehicles to come in and out of Porto Alegre, is now open to all vehicles. The lines are still long and slow, but it is still much better than before.

The airport is still underwater, so the air force base in Canoas is slowly opening up for commercial flights. Check-in and security are at a large shopping mall in this city, and then travellers are bused to the air force base to embark on the planes on the runways.

With phase 2 – clean-up – underway, our thoughts as a mission field are starting to turn to phase 3 – rebuilding – and how we can help. As of May 28, 581,638 people are displaced.

A wise friend said to me recently, “Jesus healed many, but he didn’t heal everyone.” We cannot help everyone, but may we have God’s wisdom to help as many as we can.

Update: May 17

Lyndell recently spent the day with the communications team from the Samaritan’s Purse Disaster Relief Group, helping with translation. They visited the site where the people and animals rescued from the islands and flooded cities of Eldorado do Sul and Guaiba. Lyndell shares, “I witnessed as simple fishing boats after simple fishing boats arrived with a family and many pet dogs and cats. These unsung heroes were using their resources to save as many as they could.”

In addition to translation, Lyndell has been able to connect Samaritan’s Purse with Baptist churches serving flooded communities so they can support the churches with resources. One of those big resources is water purifying filters, the first of which was installed at Lyndell and Paulo’s church! These filters will give people from all over the neighborhoods where the filters are installed access to clean, drinkable water.

Update: May 13

Updates from the past weekend:

The rain has resumed. The good news is that main water pump between the lagoon and the treatment plants is now working. They were able to fix it once the water dropped low enough, so it is now waterproofed. However, only six of the twenty-three treatment plants are currently working to provide clean water to a city of 1.5 million.

More good news:

  • Two children who require specialized formula, typically provided for free from the government due to the high cost and the families’ lack of resources, were nearing the end of their supply. Through the generosity of doctors and others, they have been able to find twelve containers of the specialized formula, as well as have funds to buy more as needed.
  • On Friday, a semi-truck sent by the Brazilian Baptist Convention from Rio de Janeiro arrived with supplies.
  • Samaritan’s Purse has sent two planes with further assistance, and Lyndell has offered to serve as an interpreter.

The photos below are from Ricardo, a seminary student and church planter, who has been the hands and feet on the ground, working morning and night to transport potable water, food baskets, hot meals, mattresses, and medicine to those who can’t get access to these things on their own – all of this in the midst of his own house and business being underwater. Yet even in this, he is filled with joy. As Lyndell writes, “He shared with me that even though he and his family have suffered a lot of loss, he has woken up every day this last week with joy knowing that he will spend the day sharing the gospel and helping people in need.”

Update: May 11

A few highlights and stories from the last few days:

A mother and adult daughter from Lyndell and Paulo’s church reached out via a WhatsApp group chat, sharing they were almost out of food and water and hadn’t had power for days. They were still at home in their apartment, but the only way in and out was by boat, which they used to get groceries at the local stores, until they ran out of nearly everything. For power, everyone still in their complex took turns charging their phones in the only outlet that worked. Lyndell reached out to a contact through Chain of Love who lives in the same city, who connected her with her brother-in-law, a pastor and former student of Lyndell’s from years past. She was able to send him funds to get water and groceries. Even though he couldn’t get in touch with the mother and daughter, he knew someone else from the same complex, who was able to get the supplies to them.

Lyndell writes, “At the end of the afternoon, one of our church planters, Eduardo, called. He had spent the day bringing water, food, hygiene supplies, and donations of clothing to the members of his congregation. He said that as he finished his last visit of the day, he sat in his car, and all he wanted to do was go home. But, heartbreakingly, he can’t. It is full of water, as are the homes of his entire congregation. The initial shock of the flood is wearing off and people are starting to think about what they have lost and wonder what the future looks like. While our immediate focus is on the most basic of needs, we pray that God would also minister to the hearts of people in this time of suffering and loss.”

At the peak of the flooding, the lagoon near Porto Alegre was at 5.33 meters; as of May 9, it was at 4.86 meters! Unfortunately, there is more rain in the forecast for the next few days. Please pray.

Update: May 8

Lyndell Campbell-Réquia reports that donations are getting through to the shelters, some from outside the state of Rio Grande do Sul where the flooding is happening and many from inside the state. The city where she and Paulo are located is cut off from helping those the next city over, where their church is located, but they have been able send funds to help.

Since we first sent out the call asking for donations on May 6, we have raised $9,080! Those funds are already being used to help provide groceries, water, and other necessities for those who have lost everything. (See pictures below.)

Church outside flood zone collecting donations.

Brazil seminary student (middle) picking up resources for the shelter where he and his family are staying.

Downloadable Slides


How do you give?

Give online: please use the links listed on this page and follow the on-page instructions.

Checks: Make payable to North American Baptists, Inc.; write “BRAZIL FLOOD” in the memo line.

Mailing address for US gifts:
P.O. Box 102493
Pasadena, CA 91189-2493

Mailing address for Canadian gifts:
PO Box 57235 Station A,
Toronto, ON M5W 5M5

For more details or instructions, click here.

Online giving:

Please continue to pray and join us in this important Kingdom relief effort!