On April 16, 2016, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck coastal Ecuador. Within weeks, the death toll surpassed 659 people and over 27,000 people injured. According to UN reports, approximately 26,640 people are now living in provisional shelters and it is estimated that 720,000 people are in need of assistance. Homes and sources of livelihoods have been severely damaged or destroyed. The earthquake has ruined basic infrastructure, including piping for drinking water, sewerage, and electricity. In addition, The National Risk Management Secretariat have indicated that 250,000 children are estimated to have increased vulnerability as a result of the earthquake. The assessment conducted by our local partner in Manta found that 40% of the children living in the community shelter have been orphaned, increasing their risk of abuse.
World Relief, with Integral Alliance members, is supporting local partners to respond to the needs of communities affected by the earthquake. Our local partners are utilizing links provided by local churches, who have a long term presence in some of the most affected locations to provide provide food, water and hygiene assistance, as well as psychosocial support for children. In addition, the project will provide awareness raising and support training for children to avoid the heightened risk of sexual abuse.
(Above photo: AP Photo/Dolores Ochoa)