Argentina flood response updated Jun 2003

Nearly 50,000 people are still unable to return to their homes in Santa Fe, Argentina following the flooding that took place in late April. Hundreds of thousands of residents were evacuated immediately following the flooding and are still residing in temporary shelters in the city. Recent outbreaks of Hepatitis have also been reported and are a direct result of the flooding.
Twenty-three people were killed in April when the Salado River overflowed and flooded the area surrounding Santa Fe. Millions of acres of farmland were also destroyed resulting in large losses to the agricultural industry. Some neighborhoods were still under water almost a month after the flooding occurred. The disaster has been described as the worst flooding in the region in 100 years.

Catholic Relief Services Responds

CRS is supporting our partner, Caritas Argentina, in its response to the disaster. CRS and Caritas Argentina recently joined forces to combat the economic crisis in Argentina through the innovative In Solidarity with Argentina program. In response to the flooding, CRS is providing over $132,200 towards the purchase of food aid, blankets, tents, communications equipment, cooking stoves and gas, as an initial contribution to the emergency relief effort.

Thanks to the generosity of many Argentineans, needs such as clothing and food were quickly met immediately following the disaster. The focus is now on helping residents recover and return to their normal lives as quickly as possible.


Santa Fe, Argentina's fifth largest city is recovering from flooding caused by intense rains in the central part of the country. The flooding caused extensive damage to property. Many homes, and even the local stadium, were engulfed when the nearby Salado River overflowed.

Residents were forced to flee to house tops to escape the floodwaters, which rose almost seven feet (two meters) in just three hours. Local health officials reported that the flooding has led to an increase in hepatitis and gastro-intestinal illnesses.

CRS' office in Bolivia supports activities in Argentina through its partnership with Caritas Argentina and the In Solidarity with Argentina program. The agency has been working in Bolivia since 1955.

Your support is needed.

Donations can also be made by calling:
or by sending checks to:
P.O. Box 17090
Baltimore, Maryland 21203-7090.

Copyright=A92003 CRS