This is what we started.

Twenty years ago, RENEW began an ambitious effort to halt the death and injury from unexploded ordnance (UXO) in Quang Tri Province. Since the Vietnam war ended, 3,431 lives have been lost, and more than 5,109 have been injured in Quang Tri from UXO.

During that 20 years, RENEW and its international partners have found and made safe more than 750,000 UXO devices. We have also responded to more than 10,000 emergency calls. Our determined team did not stop these essential services even during the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic – All thanks to you.

But we are far from finished.

Now, we urgently need your help again for two primary reasons:

RENEW needs to make up the funding shortfall quickly. Please help us deploy an emergency response team in the fall. We never want to be forced to cut staff. This is an all-women team that responds immediately to calls from the public when they find newly exposed UXO. The team members are trained and certified. Our other all-women battle area clearance team has demonstrated that Quang Tri women are highly motivated and ready to engage in this work. They are eager to serve and more than capable.

We need $150,000 to put this emergency-response team in the field. The good news is that several caring people will match all donations up to $75,000 toward our goal. So a contribution in any amount can make an immediate difference.

The place where we work is the most bombed place on earth.

Vietnam was pummeled by over 5 million tons of aerial bombs. A substantial percentage fell on Quang Tri, where tens of thousands of cluster bomblets, artillery shells, grenades, and other bombs used in ground combat lie scattered over the landscape, making Quang Tri the most bombed place on earth.

With your help, we have already put in place a world-class team of 220 highly trained, experienced professionals who have dealt with hundreds of different types of lethal explosive devices. There is no other UXO response team with this broad and deep expertise and experience.

The RENEW team is all Vietnamese, and they are led by Vietnamese. Quang Tri is their home. Some have family members who have been injured or killed by UXO. RENEW’s people are highly motivated and work with purpose.

We estimate the job in Quang Tri is roughly half done.

We can’t slow down with the job half done. A growing population has led to agricultural fields being returned to production. Bombs must be cleared for the construction of new buildings. As always, children are most at risk and must be taught the dangers of UXO. Victims who have lost limbs or their sight need our help. Burdens and afflictions of Agent Orange are widespread and unaddressed. We need more resources to deal with them.

Finishing the work in Quang Tri is now a matter of funding resources.

RENEW and its international partners have set a goal to make Quang Tri safe from the impact of UXO in a decade. We can reach this goal much faster if we have more funding resources for more survey and clearance teams. The danger won’t wait. Quang Tri’s children can’t wait.

Now we must quickly accelerate this program by adding an emergency response team. When the public finds cluster bombs and other munitions, this team will respond immediately to secure the devices and remove them safely. Because of the way ordnance was used during the war, when one device is found usually others are nearby. That’s why RENEW’s emergency response teams are essential to maintaining deaths and injuries at zero.

The team members have been trained and certified. They are ready to work. Transport and emergency vehicles are already in place. Detection, safety, computer modeling, and communications equipment are ready.

Now we need to commit $150,000 to deploy the team for two years. We have already raised $75,000 to match your donation dollar-for-dollar.

Your help is needed soon.

RENEW recently celebrated its 20th year of operating in Quang Tri. In recognition of that achievement, the Friends of Project RENEW will sponsor and support the new RENEW all-women emergency-response team. 

This new team is starting their work. We don’t have much time. So please do all you can. 

We are a new all-volunteer organization with a new website.

Friends of Project RENEW, Inc. is a new non-profit U.S. 501(c)(3) all-volunteer organization. You can make a tax-deductible contribution to Friends of Project RENEW here. We will not deduct any portion of your contribution for administrative costs.

Thank you for your support,

Chuck Searcy
Co-Founder, Project RENEW
Director, Friends of Project RENEW, Inc

Robert Frank
President, Friends of Project RENEW, Inc

One last thought…

In previous years, tax-deductible contributions to support Project RENEW were made through a fiscal sponsorship arrangement with FJC, A Foundation of Philanthropic Funds. That arrangement has now been discontinued, and future tax-deductible contributions must be made to Friends of Project RENEW, Inc. If you have arranged for recurring or future gifts to FJC for the benefit of Project RENEW, it will now be necessary to re-direct them to Friends of Project RENEW. We apologize for any inconvenience.