Guatemalan locals desperately need your help. On the 3rd on June, a catastrophic eruption of Volcano Fuego disturbed the lives of countless Guatemalans. This natural disaster has so far taken the lives of over 100, with many family members still missing.
Unfortunately, the government of Guatemala has come out in an official statement claiming they do not have the funds to support their people and disaster relief, having recently spent millions on fighter jets for their army. ($60,000,000 million quezales, or $10,000,000 AU).
Crisis teams require urgent funding to support their search for missing persons, aid the injured and conquer the destruction of their homes, towns and roads.
Heavy smoke, clouds and airborne destruction could be seen as far as Antigua days after the eruption.
I arrived in Antigua on the 9th of June, left for two days and returned back on the 12th as per my pre-booked itinerary. Clear skies on the 12th and 13th allowed me to see the mushroom of volcanic smoke wafting heavily above Volcano Fuego, demonstrating to me the severity of the situation. However it wasn’t until the night of the 12th with the volcano on the horizon that it really hit me.
I had booked a volcano hike for the next morning. It was a tourist attraction, supporting local guides. I had been in a panic googling safety ratings and sharing my concerns with my mother. (Guatemala has 33 official volancos and this is a very common activity to participate in during your holiday). Pacaya volcano, at this stage, although active is a safe volcano to hike as it is in monitored Strombolian phases. My research into Pacaya lead me to research into the destruction of Guatemala’s Fuego. It was then that, what was once a scenic horizon view of Mother Nature’s capacities became REAL for me. I had an understanding of the situation prior, but the news, statistics, images and videos of distressed humans shook me to my core.
The next morning, I felt queezy about my volcano hike to Pacaya, but I didn’t want to disappoint the local guide who was counting on my booking. It was a fantastic experience. My Pacaya hike allowed me the opportunity to closely see Fuego and it’s eruption. For myself this was a demonstration of Mother Nature’s capabilities which I will possibly and hopefully never experience again.
Mother Nature is beautiful, yet destructively chaotic and fiercely disastrous. I took pictures of Fuego from a distance which I hope will help me spread awareness of the devastation and generate funds. I want the images to be supportive and I am cautious not to glorify a tragedy.
For my friends back home, followers and internet readers whom see this today I urge you to live your life wholeheartedly, as none of us are sheltered from the unpredictability of a natural disaster.
My second request is that you consider donating to one of the many verified Go Fund Me pages to support the eruption chivalrously, as I assure you your donation will indeed make waves of significant impact.
Although the immediate danger has passed, but the effects of will be ongoing for the people living locally.