Updates from Guatemala

This past Sunday, June 3, Volcán de Fuego erupted in Guatemala near the small town of Olotenango, about 13 miles southwest of Antigua. The volcano exploded, sending volcanic ash and molten rocks raining over a 9–15 mile* radius, and sending lava down the mountain, reaching towns 5 miles away.

As of June 6, the death toll is 75, with nearly 200 people missing. Over 3,000 people have been evacuated, and rescue workers are working day and night to find people who may be buried.

Every Mother Counts’ two grantee partners in Guatemala — ACAM (the Association of Midwives of the Mam Speaking Area), and Corazón del Agua — were not directly impacted. They were far enough away (in Quetzaltenango and Guatemala City, respectively), that they were not affected.

We have been working closely with our contacts on the ground to identify the best use of resources to help relief efforts. Asociacíon Corazón del Agua will use funds collected to buy supplies locally, such as personal care items, medical supplies, diapers, and blankets, and distribute them to shelters where evacuees are being temporarily housed. Corazón will also be starting a breast milk bank for women and babies in shelters.

If you would like to support these recovery efforts directly, please make a donation here. Every Mother Counts will match every dollar raised from our emergency fund, up to $25,000.

We are monitoring the situation closely. As we know more, we will post it here, as well as on social media.

Thank you for keeping the people of Guatemala in your hearts at this time, and please keep checking back to see how you can help.

* Reports on the radius are conflicting.

** Please note, should we raise funds beyond the existing need for supplies, we will direct them to a relief organization identified by our Guatemalan partners to aid in longer-term recovery and rebuilding efforts.

Topics: Maternal Health