Oxfam helping 10,000 people affected by Ecuador floods

Published: 4 March 2008

Oxfam International today started delivering aid to 2,000 families (10,000 people) affected by the severe flooding in Ecuador. The aid will be concentrated in the temporary shelters Yaguachi, Miracle, Juján, Naranjito and Marcelino Maridueña, in the province of Guayas; and Ventanas and Urdaneta in the province of Los Ríos.

According the Ecuadorian authorities, 3.5 million people have been affected by the rains with a quarter of a million forced to leave their homes and live in temporary shelters.

Oxfam is installing 30 water tanks at the shelters and constucting temporary showers and latrines. Each evacuated family will receive cans for water storage and hygiene kits to help prevent the spread of disease.

According to Vinicio Villalba, director of the office of Intermón Oxfam in Ecuador, the aid will help take care of immediate and medium term needs of the families over the next six months. "The people at the shelters will not be able to return to their houses until the floods recede, so we must improve conditions in the shelters but we will also help them resume their livelihoods as soon as the conditions allow."

Oxfam International will provide seeds and fertilizers to help people replant their land when they return to their communities. Also, hygiene awareness campaigns will be held in the communities, coordinated with the Pan-American Organization of Health and other humanitarian organizations.

These actions will be carried out in close coordination with the communities and the national authorities.The aid has been provided with the support of the Department of Humanitarian Aid of the European Commission (ECHO).

Last week, Oxfam International distributed hygiene kits to 1000 people in ten shelters in Urdaneta, Ventanas and Babahoyo, province of Los Ríos.

Media materials

Intermon Oxfam in inundaciones de Ecuador

1. Floods: images of Babahoyo, Province Los Ríos: http://www.gigasize.com/get.php?d=6s93rog633b

2. Oxfam assistance: distribution of hygiene kits in the shelters (1) Colegio Técnico de Ricaurte y (2) Colegio Simón Bolívar, Urdaneta, Province Los Ríos:

3. Testimonials:  http://www.gigasize.com/get.php?d=68dnbqgpwbf
- Wilson Yepez / Comunidad Emiliano Pinargote - Babahoyo
- Juan Ruiz / Comunidad Pujan - Guayas
- Laura Vargas / Comunidad Virginia - Guayas
- Eufemia Muñoz / Comunidad Emiliano Pinargote - Babahoyo
- Ana Rodriquez / Comunidad Ricuate - Babahoyo

Contact Information

For further information and interviews with the team in Ecuador, please contact:

Intermón Oxfam – Press office
In Spain: Irina Fuhrmann, T. 91 204 67 20 / 615 359 401

In Ecuador: Susana Arroyo T+5932 2256272 / + 59392095996 sarroyo@intermonoxfam.org