Posted in Breaking News

Death toll rises in Guatemala, organizations reach out to help the survivors of Fuego Volcano

Guatamala_Eruption
Photo Courtesy: Conred Guatemala

Organizations around the world are making efforts to help the victims of the volcano eruption in Guatemala. Several fundraisers have been set up. There are also several grassroots efforts.

Dina Potter of Alexandria, Virginia is working with the Shriners of Guatemala to raise money for those in need.  The HR consultant has set up a GoFundMe account to raise $30,000. Here is what she posted:

My name is Dina Potter, I was born in Guatemala & now live in Alexandria, VA. It breaks my heart to see the devastation that the Fire Volcano’s eruption has caused, and the limited resources the country has available for rescue efforts. I was leery of donating to organizations that: 1) I didn’t recognize or 2) could be pocketing the money. That is why I have joined forces with Monica Corzo (a trusted friend) & Miguel Angel Valdez, President of Guatemala’s Shriners Club (FB page: @Guatemala Shriners Club No.1) They are boots on the ground in Guatemala, helping coordinate efforts & are also fundraising. Shriners Hospital in the US is a trusted and reputable non-profit organization, that depends on donations to be able to provide medical care to children in the US. Guatemala Shriners Club No.1 in coordination with Shriner’s International, have activated the protocol for humanitarian aid to be able to provide dire medical attention to children under 18 years of age, who have suffered critical injuries or are burn victims due to this natural disaster.

Dina says the $30,000 raised will be used in the follow areas:

1. Guatemala Shriners Club will take part in aid to the children affected due to the devastation caused by the Fire Volcano.
2. A team of medical specialists from Shriners Hospitals for Children (USA), is in Guatemala to evaluate & deliver medical interventions to children who need urgent medical attention due to life-threatening injuries sustained by this natural disaster.
3. We need your help to be able to move the children in air ambulances. Each air ambulance costs $1000/km, so one trip is @$15,000-$20,000.

ACTION AGAINST HUNGER

Fuego_Volcano_map
Map courtesy: Action Against Hunger

Action Against Hunger is also in Guatemala helping the survivors. The organization’s teams work in nearly 50 countries worldwide to carry out innovative, lifesaving programs in nutrition, food security, water, sanitation and hygiene. Teams are now in Guatemala. Here is what it has posted on its website.

On Sunday 3rd June, the Fuego volcano or ‘Fire Volcano’ began its second eruption of the year with strong explosions creating ash columns which have risen 6,000 meters above sea level. 3,265 people have been displaced and at-least 700 people are missing. The main area affected by this eruption is the Department of Escuintla, a region where our teams have been implementing a disaster preparedness project, with a specific focus on floods since 2016. Our teams on the ground are working hard to undertake a needs assessment before launching our response to the volcanic eruption. Reaching the areas most affected and to ensure communities have access to clean water and shelter is our top priority.

Miguel Ángel García is the Country Director of Action Against Hunger in Central America-Guatemala and Nicaragua. He described what has experienced on the ground.

The atmosphere is practically unbreathable. Within two to three days, access to clean water and basic sanitation will be a vital humanitarian need for more than 3,200 displaced people living in temporary shelters provided by local authorities.

There are still many people who have not been accounted for and rescue workers are having a difficult time getting to those who are buried under the volcanic ash.

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Author:

Journalism is my life. I've been a reporter for 36 years. My office is the world. During my career I have been honored with 50 journalism awards and nominations. I'm also an Emmy-nominated TV commentator. I'm currently the VP of Programs for SPJ Fort Worth Chapter. I'm also the former VP of Online for the National Association of Hispanic Journalists.

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