Erin Taylor 267.250.8829 (M)
FAIRFIELD, Conn. (March 23, 2017) — Save the Children is moving quickly to expand its emergency response efforts in Peru where tens of thousands of children and their families have been forced from their homes due to more than three months of intense rains and severe flooding.
"This is one of the worst emergencies to strike Peru in 30 years, devastating as much as half of the country," said Carolyn Miles, President and CEO of Save the Children. "More than 600,000 people have been affected, with 70,000 living in temporary shelters, including 24,000 children. The situation appears to be getting worse every day."
Save the Children has been working in Peru for over 35 years, and since 2012 the organization has focused on health, education and child protection programs in areas hardest hit by the rains and severe flooding.
Save the Children staff are currently responding in Lambayeque, Piura and Lima, three of the most affected regions. Besides distributing hygiene and school kits to families living in shelters, Save the Children staff members are also setting up child friendly spaces where children can feel safe and protected, receive help from specialists and play with other children.
"With additional public support, there is much more we can do," said Miles. "We are especially concerned about the lack of access to health care due to the closings of many health centers, and there is a growing threat of water-borne diseases due to widespread water contamination," she said.
Miles also noted that getting children back into school is another top priority. "Thousands of children have been out of school for months. In Lima alone, 85 schools have been closed."
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