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Central American rains endanger CFCA families

October 17, 2011

Mudslides in El Salvador October 2011
A mudslide in El Salvador after the October heavy rains.

A week of torrential rains across Central America has triggered floods and landslides and driven sponsored friends and their families in El Salvador and Guatemala from their homes. Several sponsored friends and their families in Honduras were also affected.

El Salvador

El Salvador has been under heavy rain for more than six days. According to local authorities, an estimated 20,000 people have been evacuated. School has been suspended.

The Bajo Lempa area southeast of the capital, San Salvador, has been particularly affected. Tomasa, the mother of CFCA sponsored child Angel, said families lost homes and crops that were to be harvested in two weeks.

The rain is expected to continue until Oct. 19.

CFCA has contributed beans, rice, sugar, coffee, tortilla flour, toilet paper and mattresses to the shelters where sponsored friends are staying.

Other sponsored friends and their families are still in their homes. However, access roads to their communities are blocked and communication is only possible by cell phone.

About 10 families from the community of El Manantial were evacuated to a shelter in Santa Ana. CFCA staff members are visiting them to assess sponsored friends' most urgent needs.

Shelter after Central American heavy rains
Sponsored friends and their families in Santa Ana, El Salvador,
are staying at the Monsignor Romero shelter because of
heavy rains.

Local authorities are covering most of the food, shelter, sleeping and clothing needs for those who have been displaced. CFCA staff members are also preparing to offer support to sponsored friends and their families when the emergency has ended.

Guatemala

More than 40 sponsored friends and their families in different regions of Guatemala need support because the heavy rains have flooded houses and sent families to local shelters.

CFCA has provided emergency assistance with food and water supplies, including beans, tortilla flour, coffee and soup, and blankets.

"We have found many sponsored friends and their families who need our support in these moments because their crops have been affected," said Luis Cocón, CFCA communications liaison in Guatemala. "Also because of the heavy rains, the parents have not been able to go out and work. Some have suffered flooding in their homes and it has damaged their belongings (clothes, furniture, etc.)."

Honduras

Preliminary information from CFCA projects in Honduras indicate that several families in the sponsorship program were affected. However, no injuries or deaths have been reported.

In CFCA's project in Santa Rosa, at least 15 sponsored friends and their families suffered losses after the heavy rains.

Please keep the people of Central America in your prayers.

Henry Flores, director of the CFCA communications center in El Salvador, and Luis Cocón in the CFCA communications center in Guatemala contributed to this report.

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