Photo: BBC — The state of Tabasco suffered the worst flooding in 50 years.
A Winnipeg family and Assiniboine Credit Union (ACU) have partnered to channel donations to nongovernmental relief agencies assisting Mexican flood victims in the state of Tabasco.
“The situation in Tabasco is extremely serious,” says Winnipegger Jorge Leon, whose extended family is among those hardest hit by the disaster. “Even though the news media have stopped covering the story, many people need our help to cope with shortages of food, drinking water, clothing and medicines.”
Donations can be made at any of ACU’s 22 branches in Winnipeg, or at their Gillam and Thompson branches.
The flood, which covered parts of Chiapas and 80 per cent of Tabasco destroyed hundreds of thousands of houses and businesses and directly affected over one million people. At least 90 per cent of the city of Villahermosa, Tabasco’s state capital, was under water and 80 per cent was without electricity and running water. While flood waters have receded in most parts of the state, the devastation will be felt for much time to come.
Many people are dependent on aid for food, water and medicine because the economy is at a standstill until the cleanup is completed and businesses can reopen.
“Many Manitobans know from personal experience how terrible it is to be flooded out,” says Leon. “Imagine how much more serious the situation is in countries that are not as wealthy as Canada.”
The Leon family of Winnipeg is urging Manitobans to help. People who donate to “Mexican Flood Relief” at the ACU can direct their contribution to either the Canadian Red Cross or the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace.
Funds will be used to provide emergency assistance in the form of drinking water, food, clothing, health and sanitation kits, mosquito nets, and cooking utensils. It will also help in the coordination efforts currently underway to help families to return to their houses, by providing them with cleaning kits to help them sanitize and clean their homes.
The relief agencies will issue charitable tax receipts for donations over $10.