Relief operations stepped up for flood victims in Mexico

By November 15, 2007

Mexico (MNN) — Mexico's flood damages are so severe, it
could be months before survivors will be able to return home. Media accounts are calling the flooding crisis
in Tabasco state the worst in a half century.

World Vision is providing some of the basic necessities to
the nearly one million displaced, of which about 25,000 are children. 

Nearly  40 metric tons
of soap, shampoo, sanitary towels, sanitary paper rolls, powdered detergent,
and liquid cleaner have been donated to World Vision and are being shipped to
Villahermosa, although flooded and mud-covered roadways may cause delays.
Additionally, staff is providing lanterns, batteries, and children's toys.

World Vision's emergency response director in Mexico, Aldo Pontecorvo, says children are trying to
manage stress, fear, and loss. "People are still shaken by these floods. Children are especially in need of stability,
of safety, a secure place to play. As far as World Vision is concerned, we're
trying to provide that through what we have called our 'Child Friendly

Child Friendly Spaces will allow the kids to participate
in structured activities and experience healing from any trauma and loss
they've experienced. They also allow children to return to healthy routines and
experience a sense of normalcy again. The team will be constructing several in and around Villahermosa,
Tabasco's state capital.

A number of schoolteachers also have received basic training
in stress management and how to use the developmental educational package World
Vision has provided.

In meeting the overwhelming needs, the community
responds. The World Vision team is the
hands and feet of Christ. Pontecorvo says their faith is woven into all aspects
of their response. "We try to
address them with the message of Jesus Christ so they can start their day, or we
try to start all our meetings with a passage of the Bible, trying to give them
some hope in relation to the Word that's been provided."

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