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Women's Missionary Society of the African Methodist Episcopal Church

It is a calling, not a club, and for nearly 150 years, the Women's Missionary Society (WMS) of the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church has continued the ministry of Jesus Christ through witness and service around the world.

A Non-Governmental Organization with consultative status to the United Nations Economic and Social Council, WMS is committed to winning souls to Christ and improving the lives of those in need by providing health, education and economic resources and empowerment, as well as a voice on issues related to social justice. With more than 800,000 members, operating in 32 countries across the U.S., the Caribbean, South Africa, West Africa and India, WMS is the women's representational entity of the AME, working on the front lines with those responding to crisis and need.

In October 2017, one year after Hurricane Matthew struck Haiti and left more than one million people who were still suffering in the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake without basic care, WMS opened the Bishop Sarah Francis Davis Outpatient Clinic in the rural area of Delice. A three-story state-of-the-art medical facility located about an hour outside of Port-au-Prince, the clinic was financed and outfitted in full through the efforts of the WMS. In addition to urgent care, it provides child and maternal health programs, HIV/AIDS testing and counseling, cholera treatment and prevention and services to combat malnutrition. The clinic serves over 15,000 people a year, and WMS continues to support the clinic by providing medicine, medical and other equipment. "The dedication and opening of the Bishop Sarah Davis Clinic was one of my proudest moments as president of the Women's Missionary Society," said Dr. Shirley Cason Reed. "I truly believe that, as women working together, there is nothing that we set out to do that we can't accomplish, and seeing this project from vision to reality reaffirms that conviction."

The WMS has built several schools in South Africa, provided funding for wells that supply clean water to communities in Africa and India. Its members have received training via economic empowerment workshops which enabled them to share tools that help women in underdeveloped countries to become financially self-sufficient.

Last year, after Hurricane Harvey wreaked havoc in Texas, WMS President Shirley Cason Reed and a cadre of members were on the ground in Houston helping to collect, organize and deliver food, clothing and other supplies to the homeless and displaced. As part of its "Missionaries on the Move" initiative, WMS donates more than $25,000 each year in food and clothing to women and children's programs wherever its meetings are held. In addition, members regularly visit men and women incarcerated in local and federal prisons, donate books to libraries in impoverished areas, and award college scholarships to deserving students both within and outside the AME Church.

Earlier this year, The Women's Missionary Society of the AME Church launched a letter-writing campaign that encouraged members to contact their Congressional representatives and insist that they pass legislation limiting access to firearms. WMS also partners with other organizations that focus on advocating for women and children, educational access and opportunity, an end to hunger, and peace and justice, including Bread of the World, The Balm in Gilead, Inc., The Black Women's Agenda, Inc. and Children's Defense Fund.

"Michelle Obama once said something that I like to think is at the essence of our objective as the Women's Missionary Society," Dr. Reed shared. "She said 'As women, we must stand up for ourselves. As women, we must stand up for each other. As women, we must stand up for justice for all.' That's what the Women's Missionary Society of the African Methodist Episcopal Church does. It is who we are, and in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, it is why we serve."

"The Black Women's Agenda, Inc."
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