Sunday, June 13, 2010
The month of May brought lot of rain to our part of the country. It seemed to rain almost every night (but not quite). But with the rain comes the consequences of deforestation,flooding. Not terrible massive floods, but enough to bring to our attention a small zone in the mountains maybe fifteen miles or so from the mission. It was told to us that there were close to sixty houses damaged by flood waters. So this past Wednesday we decided to hike up to this little village and see how much of what we heard was true.
I was not feeling very well that morning and was sceptical of hiking for several hours on an empty stomach but I went anyway (and don't regret it). After hiking up a long dry river bed we turned up the mountain into a small hollow, sort of flat hung between the two mountains, sprinkled with mud huts. Our group was kind of split up (due to some walking faster than others) And I ended up by myself with a local pastor showing me the way. After some questions I found out the village contained about one thousand people with a small Catholic church and school. The school was very small, Which meant that other children had to hike a good five miles to school(which I was shocked how many did).
Our finding were less severe than we had anticipated. Most of the damage to houses was mud huts that needed shoveled out and maybe a hole repaired. What I was more concerned with was the crop damage. What was once corn field now washed away and seemed to tell the future,empty stomachs, poor families, long days.
After more questions (and hiking) we found that the water came from a change of patterns in the drainage from further up the mountain. Not really a fixable problem without a couple million dollars to spend in excavation. The food however is going to be provided by local sources to relief food.Lord willing it will help the familys through till next planting season.