At 5:00 pm I wrote – It’s an hour before the last sunset I will see in El Salvador. We are still sitting in front of Compassion project in Santa Maria and I feel sad that we have to leave because there is so much need. Hurricane Ida was wicked to this area, and today was the first day that rescue workers were able to get food and water here.
I have seen so many things today, and I am trying to wrap my head around all the emotions and stories. It’s difficult. In one day I went from playing soccer with Compassion kids, to going to a poultry farm and watching a chicken get his neck slit, boiled, plucked and gutted, to seeing the ruins of a home of a Compassion child and her family.
I had new experiences today that my brain is trying to process. For example, I was at a point of desperation for a bathroom break and used a cliff side makeshift outhouse in the area of a landslide. While doing my thing, I noticed the ground beneath me was very unstable and I feared going down the side of a cliff, or having the hole beneath me cave in. Luckily, I safely made it through the moment!
Seeing all the erosion, the destroyed homes, hearing helicopters hovering in this area, made me keenly aware of the fact that 20,000 people in this village are in the middle of a crisis. Crops were destroyed, livestock drowned, roads were ruined, and homes were ruined. A town near by was completely buried by a mudslide and the 500 people in this town are still missing. Obviously we know what happened, but until they can dig through the mud and find people, the government will not make these numbers public.
But today, with all these experiences, one little boy sticks out in my head. He is a Compassion Child in the Santa Maria project. I noticed his arm was wrapped up as if it was broken. We asked the boy what happened and he looked at us with sad little eyes. The boy simply said, “I climbed a tree because I wanted to see the plane, but then I fell out of the tree.”
Then, a little tear streamed down the boys’ cheek and he hugged his mom. It was obvious to me that this young boy carried a bigger burden then just an injured arm. I then watched as he and his mother walked over to get water and food supplies from the project workers. I looked at the weary faces of these Compassion project workers who had been working around the clock for 6 days to care for families. Then I watched a project worker bend down and tenderly hug this little guy. I humbly realized who the true heroes were.
I am a sponsor … but today I met heroes. I am just happy that I can be a part of this amazing ministry.
If you would like to help with the disaster here in El Salvador, you can make a donation by clicking here.
Check out Shaun Groves video of the hurricane.
Specializing in Marriage and Family Therapy
Life, Family, Faith and Travel...the life of a Jones
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