A picture speaks a thousand words. The pics you are seeing from our mission community today show the depth of the devastation from Hurricane Fiona. The best/worst picture that ‘sums it all up’ was a little boy sitting on the front porch/cement of his house that was destroyed two days ago. He was just staring at his house. Talk about heart-breaking. A clear reminder that 15 years ago God brought us here (due to a hurricane) and God needs us to find ways to bring help and hope to our brothers and sisters.
We got ‘hit’ by the storm in three big ways (and many more):
- Our first neighborhood saw four houses destroyed. They were in the path of the hurricane. You can see the impact by the twisted metal studs and the debris field. Many houses are going to need new tin roofs.
- The baseball field lost the roof of the bleachers, a large section of fence was washed out/away, and there were a few trees along the outfield that are now in the outfield.
- Community Two also took a direct hit which severely damaged six/seven roofs (most of the tin sheeting ripped off) and many others where the roof will need addressed/repaired.
The good news:
- Everyone is safe. The community centers and Church provided safe, sturdy shelter.
- After assessing the situation, we have a ‘hurricane’ of goodness tackling the challenges and damage tomorrow. Many of the repairs will be short term so we can develop long term strategies.
- This evening, after we resupplied them with the right tools, everyone in both communities were out and about helping clean up the entire communities. It was heart-warming and hopeful to see everyone working together.
- Tomorrow, another massive round of food will be distributed as they work to calm down and settle into the work of walking forward.
The volume of water that fell, and the level of the river, was just incredible. Tin City (the miles of tin shacks along the river where thousands live) was literally wiped away. If you go up and down the river, all you see hanging from tree branches 30 feet above river level are clothes, towels and household items. Please pray for these good people who are suffering so greatly. We are meeting with the Bishop tomorrow to discuss ways we can assist and respond.
YOU make the mission possible. God bless you. Let’s pray for those who suffer and are in need. There will be many ways all of us can help and be of support. We are addressing immediate needs and will share a more complete plan in the near future.