Federal Department of Foreign Affairs FDFA

Hurricane Eta: Switzerland provides emergency aid

Central America was hit hard by hurricane Eta. Switzerland is providing CHF 700,000 in emergency aid to help people in Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala.

Inhabitants crossing an avenue flooded by heavy rains following the passage of hurricane Eta

Tropical storm Eta swept through several Central American countries, causing flooding and damage in its path. © Keystone

A powerful force 4 hurricane gradually hit several Central American countries as of Tuesday 3 November. Eta, as it is called, brought torrential rains and strong winds causing countless floods and landslides. Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala, countries in which the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) is active, are particularly affected. In total, more than 1.8 million people are affected by this disaster.

In response to an appeal for funds amounting to CHF 20 million launched by the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent on 8 November, Switzerland has pledged CHF 700,000. This sum is allocated by the SDC's Humanitarian Aid department. The international organisation's aid aims to support the Honduran, Nicaraguan and Guatemalan Red Cross in providing emergency assistance and to support the population, focusing on livelihoods and basic needs: shelter, water, health, sanitation and hygiene.

Swiss development cooperation has been present in Central America since 1978. The SDC has been working for several years in Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala. It has a regional office in Managua which runs projects in the field of disaster risk reduction. Current activities can be adapted to meet the needs generated by this disaster.

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