My name is Rick Caldwell and I am privileged to be one of the leads on this Volcán de Fuego relief project. Seven years ago, shortly after the 2011 eruption of Fuego, I was fortunate to be able to be part of a medical –dental mission serving in that area of Guatemala. Over the last two years, our dental team has returned to the area and we are working with a local partner, Quesada Solidaria. On these missions, we have seen firsthand, the needs of the people that extend beyond health care, and the work that Quesada Solidaria is doing to try to meet those needs.
So when the current eruption occurred, my assistant, Iris Renderos and I wanted to do whatever we could to try to help those impacted. We have developed a relationship with people in these communities and know that they desperately need help now. Discussions were held with Quesada Solidaria about how best to help.
Recently, Devxchange reached out to us in a positive manner with a significant contribution to our cause. We have been able to work through the logistics of securely getting all of our current funds to our partner in Guatemala. At the same time, further investigation and discussion with the Devxchange staff have made it clear that this will be a better platform, going forward, to continue with this for future projects.
The need right now is to rebuild and re-supply houses for those who lost everything. Quesada Solidaria has been involved in building simple but secure homes in this area in the past. I have seen a number of these houses and they are practical builds. This is the rainy season and permanent shelter is needed as soon as possible. Overcrowded temporary shelter is not a long term solution.
Our goal is to raise $10000.00 as quickly as possible and then get it into the hands of our partner for deployment on the ground. The cost to build one of these houses is about $5000.US. To date , we are just shy of 50% of our goal. All funds raised so far are now in the hands of our Guatemalan partner. Regular updates and photos, as the funds are utilized, will be posted on this site.