Rebuilding from the ashes with resilience

A catastrophic eruption of Guatemala’s Volcán de Fuego in 2018 affected more than 1.7 million people in three states. Entire villages were consumed by clouds of ash and deadly lava flows.

With over 4000 households displaced, more than 190 people killed, and 256 people missing, this was one of Guatemala’s most catastrophic volcanic eruptions.

(Photo courtesy EPA and BBC)

As part of its mission to Support Communities in Need, The NDY Charitable Trust – in conjunction with the Broadwater Southport Rotary Club – donated $10,000AUD through the Disaster Aid Australia grant to assist local charity SERES in disaster relief efforts.

The funds were used to directly support the survivors in the ensuing chaos, allowing SERES to place a full-time team on the ground around-the-clock and establish an information center for the coordination of food, supplies and shelters. The information center for coordination of supplies was in operation until December 2018 in the recovery efforts to identify survivors and coordinate in country responses.

Since then, SERES has been working to try to ensure a reconstruction process in which no-one is left behind, both in terms of immediate emergency needs and the longer reconstruction process. According to SERES: “We are looking at how these communities can be assisted in rebuilding in a manner which transcends ‘bouncing back’, leaving them more resilient than ever before.”

Click here to find out more about SERES and their ongoing work to rebuild lives in Guatemala.