In Guatemala, a total of 80,000 people we affected by the two hurricanes that ravaged Central America in November 2020, Hurricanes Eta and Iota, including approximately 800 families that are part of Compassion’s program. Like in every country affected by these disasters, our local church partners immediately mobilized to provide food, warm clothes and shelter. In the weeks and months ahead, staff will assess needs and begin making plans for long-term recovery.
Fourteen-year-old Anthony shares about his experience during the storms: “I was in my uncle’s house with my cousins doing homework when my mother called, asking us to stay inside the home because the water level was increasing really fast. I was scared.”
“Then my brother came to the house telling me that my father and mother had tried to move all the things they that could. Sadly, hours later, our parents told us that they couldn’t save anything from our house and that it had been completely flooded,” Anthony says. “Thank God we still have our parents with us. We are living at our uncle’s home while the water goes down. I wish I could recover my belongings. But I have faith that no matter the situation, we will have new things in our home.”
Nine-year-old Elfego also recounts his experience: “When we arrived [home after my mother’s work], we were surrounded by the dark water. Our things were floating! It smelled really bad and the floor was dark. I was scared and sad because I lost my Skippy Magazine I received from the centre.”
In the aftermath, the Compassion centre is providing rent support to Elfego and his mother, Amelia, so they have a safe place to stay while their home is restored.
“I can’t imagine what would’ve happened [without the support of Compassion],” says Amelia. “The centre is supporting me to pay the rent of this room. Without the centre, life would be worse.”
As always, if your sponsored child and their family were directly affected by an environmental disaster, we will contact you with more information about the impact and how you can help.
Beyond the COVID-19 crisis, several other crises, including environmental disasters, have affected the countries where Compassion works this year. Read more about our disaster response efforts around the world.
Photos and field reporting by Javier Elis