Honduras under water

Report
from Mercy Corps
Published on 22 Oct 2008 View Original
Mercy Corps is distributing food, blankets and tarps to families in Honduras who've been forced from their homes by landslides and floods caused by days of nonstop rains.

We need your help to replenish emergency stocks - and to ensure that farmers can quickly replant lost crops so a natural disaster doesn't turn into a larger food crisis.

A Destructive Deluge

On Monday, Honduran President Manuel Zelaya declared a national state of emergency, calling on international help for the more than 140,000 residents affected by the deluge. Roads and bridges have been damaged and crops destroyed across the country. Twenty deaths have been attributed to the deluge.

"This flooding is worse than what was caused by Mitch in 1998," says Chet Thomas, Mercy Corps' representative in Honduras and director of Project Global Village, "although that happened in a few days, where this has been the accumulation of a week and a half of constant rain."

In fact, more than four feet of rain has fallen in the last four days, according to Thomas. And he says things will get worse; the rainy season is expected to continue another six weeks.

Your gift will help affected families cope with the rains and their aftermath.

Honduras' topography - 70 percent of the country is mountainous - makes heavy rainfall particularly destructive. Rains drain into the populated lowlands, flooding farms and threatening food and export crops.

Thomas says he and his staff have been distributing stockpiles of emergency supplies, which include food, blankets, health kits, baby blankets and canvas tarps. But inventories are running low.

A History of Helping

Mercy Corps has worked in Honduras since 1982 - longer than anywhere else.

Many of our programs directed by our 140-person staff are in and around Comayagua, an area severely affected by the rains. There, we're serving 400 communities through a network of community pharmacies, helping improve schools and reducing the incidence of domestic violence.

We also responded with assistance after Hurricane Mitch, making replanting crops a priority so farmers wouldn't miss an entire season.

Please donate today to help us respond to this latest deluge - by meeting immediate needs and making sure families can restart vital farming activities as soon as possible.