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Charlene Curtiss ( -
Posted on Saturday, October 08, 2005 - 10:33 am:   

Re:The Guatemala volunteers in training: My Houston Chronicle says food is getting scarce and roads are out due to hurricane Stan and yesterday's earthquake. My daughters group was traveling the country visiting other volunteers and got stranded at a hotel of sorts in Quetzeltanango. I am unable to get the Peace Corps update on any help the group may be getting. My daughter's last email said 2 volunteers were unaccounted for and she is sick and should probably see a doctor. Where do the volunteers get help in times like this so they can again help others?
Admin1 (admin) ( -
Posted on Saturday, October 08, 2005 - 11:21 am:   

Almost 260 people have died in floods, mudslides, volcanic activity and earthquakes which have rocked a wide area of Mexico, Central and South America over the past five days

Almost 260 people have died in floods, mudslides, volcanic activity and earthquakes which have rocked a wide area of Mexico, Central and South America over the past five days

To get up to date information on any Country of Service call Peace Corps Headquarters in Washington at 1-800-424-8580 and ask to speak to the duty officer and tell them you have a question regarding the safety and security of a peace corps volunteer. Tell the duty officer the name of the volunteer and country of service of the volunteer you are calling about, tell them who you are and what your relation is to the volunteer. If you find out anything you think would be of interest to other parents, leave a message here after your conversation describing what the duty officer told you could be shared publicly with other parents.

Almost 260 people have died in floods, mudslides, volcanic activity and earthquakes which have rocked a wide area of Mexico, Central and South America over the past five days

Mudslides, floods kill 258
October 9, 2005
The Sun-Herald

Caption:A boy looks at a river that burst its banks, damaging houses and dragging a truck away, in Chimaltenango, Guatemala October 6, 2005. More than 200 people have now died in floods and mudslides in Central America and southern Mexico in the last few days in the wake of Hurricane Stan. REUTERS/Carlos Duarte

Almost 260 people have died in floods, mudslides, volcanic activity and earthquakes which have rocked a wide area of Mexico, Central and South America over the past five days.

An avalanche of mud and water killed at least 26 people and left 30 missing when a river broke its banks and washed away mountainside homes near the Colombian town of Bello, authorities said yesterday.

Rescue workers were trying to find survivors and bodies in the mud-choked wreckage of 15 homes, said the town mayor's office.

The dead from yesterday's mudslide included an unspecified number of children. At least 20 people were injured.

Survivors, some clutching small children, wept in a nearby schoolhouse used as an emergency hostel where they gathered with their few remaining possessions.

"The river water carried stones and trunks of wood," said local Roman Catholic priest Adan Gasior. "The high ground was shaking and people were terrified. It's a tragedy and we have to pray to God for the dead and the disappeared."

Mudslides in Colombia are a regular occurrence at this time of year, when the wet season brings heavy rains with often fatal results for shanty homes built on sloping ground.

Rescue efforts in the neighbouring countries of El Salvador and Guatemala were hampered by a moderate earthquake which was felt in both countries yesterday.

The earthquake caused the collapse of a highway bridge in Guatemala and sent thousands of frightened El Salvadoran residents into the streets.

There were no immediate reports of deaths or injuries from the quake, which had a preliminary magnitude of 5.8.

The quake also forced officials to suspend their search for two coffee workers missing since last Saturday when the Ilamatepec volcano erupted about 60 kilometres west of San Salvador.

The natural disaster has affected seven countries, including Costa Rica, Honduras and Nicaragua.

The death toll throughout Central America from flooding and landslides in the wake of Hurricane Stan has reached 258, although more bodies are expected to be found.

When this story was posted in September 2005, this was on the front page of PCOL:

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First and foremost, Give. Carol Bellamy says "In situations such as this one, money is needed the most" and added that Hurricane Katrina's impact on New Orleans is comparable to last year's tsunami. Thailand RPCV Thomas Tighe's Direct Relief International has committed an initial $250,000 in cash to assist hurricane victims. Mayor Tom Murphy (RPCV Paraguay) says Pittsburgh is ready to embrace refugees from devastated areas. Mark Shriver of Save the Children says it will assist rural communities it serves in rebuilding. Brazil RPCV Robert Backus is among the first Vermont doctors to volunteer to travel to Louisiana to treat victims. Ohio Governor Bob Taft (RPCV Tanzania) says students displaced by "Katrina" can enroll in Ohio Colleges and Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle (RPCV Tunisia) is sending soldiers to help residents of Louisiana. Do you know what it means to lose New Orleans? Contact your local Red Cross to Volunteer.

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The U.S. military, struggling to fill its voluntary ranks, is allowing recruits to meet part of their reserve military obligations after active duty by serving in the Peace Corps. Read why there is opposition to the program among RPCVs. Director Vasquez says the agency has a long history of accepting qualified applicants who are in inactive military status. John Coyne says "Not only no, but hell no!" and RPCV Chris Matthews leads the debate on "Hardball." Latest: Avi Spiegel says Peace Corps is not the place for soldiers while Coleman McCarthy says to Welcome Soldiers to the Peace Corps. RPCVs: Read our poll results.

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When the National Call to Service legislation was amended to include Peace Corps in December of 2002, this country had not yet invaded Iraq and was not in prolonged military engagement in the Middle East, as it is now. Read the story of how one volunteer spent three years in captivity from 1976 to 1980 as the hostage of a insurrection group in Colombia in Joanne Marie Roll's op-ed on why this legislation may put soldier/PCVs in the same kind of danger.

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The Peace Corps Library Date: March 27 2005 No: 536 The Peace Corps Library
Peace Corps Online is proud to announce that the Peace Corps Library is now available online. With over 30,000 index entries in 500 categories, this is the largest collection of Peace Corps related stories in the world. From Acting to Zucchini, you can find hundreds of stories about what RPCVs with your same interests or from your Country of Service are doing today. If you have a web site, support the "Peace Corps Library" and link to it today.

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170,000 is a very special number for the RPCV community - it's the number of Volunteers who have served in the Peace Corps since 1961. It's also a number that is very special to us because March is the first month since our founding in January, 2001 that our readership has exceeded 170,000. And while we know that not everyone who comes to this site is an RPCV, they are all "Friends of the Peace Corps." Thanks everybody for making PCOL your source of news for the Returned Volunteer community.

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Story Source: Sydney Morning Herald

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Guatemala; COS - El Salvador; COS - Honduras; COS - Costa Rica; COS - Nicaragua; COS - Colombia; Disaster Recovery; Safety and Security of Volunteers; Hurricane Relief


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