S.O.S National Disaster Due to Flooding in Nicaragua
More than 80 deaths
70,000 homeless, equal to 3% of Nicaragua’s population
$200 million in losses, roughly equal to 40% of Nicaragua’s export earnings from 1981-82
90% of land prepared for cotton crop in Chinandega now unusable (Cotton is one of Nicaragua’s major export crops. Chinandega is the major cotton producing province)
60% of corn crop and banana crop lost (Corn and bananas form an essential part of the Nicaraguan diet.)
30 % of total basic grain production damaged (rice, corn, beans)
50% of seeds and fertilizers lost
More than 60 industries damaged or destroyed
50% of highways destroyed
Partial or total destruction of schools, hospitals and machinery throughout the country.
Nicaragua is now facing the third disaster in the last ten years. The floods have been more damaging to the country’s economy than the December 1972 earthquake and equal only to those damages produced by the war that ended July 19, 1979.
It is estimated that 75 tons each of beans, rice, corn and milk are needed each month to meet the needs of those left homeless by the floods. Medicine, clothes and food are also urgently needed.
Faced with this disaster, once more the Nicaraguan people are demonstrating their determination to struggle for a better society despite all obstacles.
The Nicaraguan people have demonstrated an incredible spirit of sharing and cooperation and capacity for hard work and organization in their schools and factories, through voluntary work sessions and collections to help the homeless.
Yet the Nicaraguan people need international help to strengthen their efforts. Nicaragua has received much less aid than excepted. This is due in part to the fact that the rains have not been reported in the international press or, when reported, the damage has been minimized.