Several area churches, wishing to offer more than prayers to Zimbabwean refugees, are donating medical supplies and money to th Zimbabwe Medical Drive.
Goals of the drive, organized by four local women in June 1978 are to collect three tons of medical and educational supplies and raise $10,000. These supplies will be transported and distributed to Zimbabwean refugee camps in Mozambique, according to the spokeswoman, Dr. Sylvia Hill.
The Unitarian Church of Rockville became active in the project when its South Africa study group found "refugee conditions in South Africa were worse than we thought," said Dolores Helman.
"We held a special service one Sunday to teach the congregation about the problem," said Helman, "and urged them to bring in medical supplies, like bandages."
"Our group wanted to accomplish two things," said George Garland, of the church, "to write a human rights resolution for the Unitarian Universalist Association and to do something more specific like collecting supplies."
Garland won his first battle Saturday when the first Unitarian district accepted his "Human Rights in Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe" resolution.
The Rockville congregation also supported a boycott of ITT poducts, according to Garland, "to protest ITT's large investments in South Africa."
"Over the last couple of weeks we've gathered several big shopping bags full of medical supplies," said Dr. Dorothy Millon, who is active in the committee. "A number of our congregation work in the medical field and were able to persuade doctors to donate supplies."
Garland said the church has already collected about $1,000 and he expects much more before the drive ends on Feb. 4. "We're holding the money and pledging it all at once during the WHUR Zimbabwe radiothon this week," he said.
"Many more churches are having a Zimbabwe Sunday," said Hill, "and will be taking up collections."
Some other churches participating in the drive are Asbury Methodist Church on 11th Street NW, which has been taking up a collectiosn the first Sunday of every month; Peoples Congregational United Church of Chirst on 13th Street NW, whose youth group is collecting medical and educational supplies, and St. Stephen and the Incernation Church on Center Street NW.