15 August 2012
Tearfund is campaigning for the rehousing of 5,500 families in Honduras who are living in squalid and disease-ridden conditions.
For more than a decade, people along the river banks in the city of San Pedro Sula have been promised the opportunity to relocate by the authorities.
The environment for those living in an area called Los Bordos is very harsh, with open sewage, contaminated water, piles of rubbish and widespread disease.
Most of the residents are from rural areas and have been forced to live there after being made homeless by natural disasters, such as Hurricane Mitch in 1998.
After years of broken promises to provide new accommodation for the families, Tearfund is working with our partner, an ecumenical Christian organisation called the Mennonite Social Action Commission to take up their cause.
Lack of political will
This partnership is training community leaders to argue their case before the authorities, as well as lobbying local and national government to provide safe and decent housing itself. Action is also being taken to tackle Los Bordos’ many social problems.
Alexis Pacheco, Tearfund’s Country Representative for Central America, said, ‘Honduras remains a developing country characterised by a lack of political will to support the poor.
‘This has led to the creation of dire conditions for these families, that have historically been marginalised and deprived of access to basic services and care that every human being should have.
‘The Mennonite Social Action Commission works to strengthen the democratic process and the local and regional development of Honduras. They promote the participation of citizens in the civil society by establishing respectful relationships, dialogue and consensus with local governments.
‘Their work is rooted in Christian ethics and focuses on the human development of the poorest families and communities in Honduras.’