Colombia Mudslides: Mercy Corps Reports From Mocoa

April 02, 2017

Survivors urgently need food, clean water and blankets

BOGOTA, Colombia — The global organization Mercy Corps has a team on the ground in the city of Mocoa, the capital of the department of Putumayo, following devastating mudslides that leveled homes and destroyed highways. According to news reports, more than 250 people were killed and scores more are missing and left homeless.

“Our first concern is for the survivors of this disaster, and for the families whose loved ones are missing or have died,” says Provash Budden, Mercy Corps’ country director in Colombia. “The Colombian government has a strong first response system and a well-developed disaster unit, and we stand ready to assist.”

Mercy Corps team members in Mocoa report that survivors urgently need food, clean water, blankets and hygiene kits containing soap, toothbrushes and other essential supplies. In addition, survivors of the disaster will require psychosocial support and safe spaces for vulnerable women and children.

“We have been working in Putumayo for 11 years and know the region well,” says Budden. “We will be coordinating with the government and other humanitarian organizations to fill any gaps in the response to this tragedy and help the people of Mocoa build back stronger.”

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