On April 16, 2016 an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.8 hit the Ecuadorian Province of Manabí, where the Salvatorian Fathers and Brothers are present in the city of Manta, regularly attending about 10,000 parishioners. The number of casualties in Manta alone is estimated to be 160 and thousands are wounded, whereas in the whole region about 500 people died, over 2,000 are missing and more than 20,000 have lost their homes. Fortunately, all members of the SDS community are well, but the newly built rooms for catechism – reference for many of the children of the parish - are destroyed.
The Salvatorians in Manta immediately started to provide support to the homeless and traumatized; the Colombian Province (of which Ecuador is part) and the Spanish Salvatorian NGO Amsala both launched a campaign to raise funds. SOFIA on her part applied for an emergency grant for the purchase and distribution of the most needed essentials, such as drinking water, food, temporary tents and mattresses. The Salvatorian community in Manta is coordinating all their humanitarian activities with the local authorities.
Picture credits: Manta: queue for water