Our first effort involved delivering food to 4 families. That was a learning experience. First, we confronted the challenge of receiving donors money through the payment portal. We had to wait approximately two weeks for the initial money to come through. After that, we had to figure out where to purchase food in bulk, estimate the approximate cost of food bundles, and determine the best way (and safest) way to deliver food to families.
Fortunately, we worked through those challenges and were able to refine our process to be faster and more efficient. Now we’ve completed our second “wave”, which has also taught us a lot. It’s been an adventure.
The Challenges Of Heavy Rain In El Salvador
The rain has been heavy in El Salvador. Flash floods are common here during the rainy season. Keep in mind that the seasons are different in El Salvador. The rainy season in El Salvador lasts from April to October, essentially for the entire duration of “Summer” months. El Salvador doesn’t have four seasons, just two: Dry season and wet (rainy) season.
Unfortunately the rain has slowed the delivery process a little bit. The people here that need the food the most, they often live down poorly maintained dirt roads. Those roads usually turn into mud and flooded rivers during the rains.
Oftentimes when we first meet a family that needs food, we meet the family on a publicly paved roadway, at a place that is mutually convenient to meet. However, sometimes they are unable to walk home with the food and eggs, because the food will be destroyed from the heavy rain. Therefore, we give them a ride home in order to protect their food supplies. As you can imagine, driving down these muddy pathways is a challenge in our small car. But a challenge never held us back!
From the rain, we had two bags of corn mix get wet, which we had to replace. Also, a crate of 30 eggs toppled after getting wet, which destroyed about 15 eggs. Bummer! Since then, we’ve begun carrying extra plastic bags with us in the car to cover the eggs.
Some Photos of People We Helped
We try to get photos when we can. Photos are especially necessary for the website that we use to identify those families that need help the most.
You can see the website that we use here: https://ayuda-sv.org/
Keep in mind that the numbers written on the papers (above) are used by the website to identify the people that have already received help. It’s a way to ensure that everyone can get some help. We don’t take photos of their faces to respect their privacy.
An Update On The Campaign Numbers
During the first wave, we helped 4 families. For the second wave, we helped 8 families. That brings us two a combined total of 12 families helped.
Helping each family costs about $22, which means we’ve spent approximately $264 on food for families. Our campaign has raised $543 to date, which means that we still have about $279 remaining. Therefore, we can help another 12 families, with our hope that no additional food gets wet in the process.
Right now, we’re pending on the next food order. Our next day free day from work is on Monday next week (3 days away), so we’ll be ordering food for another 6 families. We’ve found that it’s better not to order massive amounts of food because the food is more likely to get wet and/or damaged during delivery. Also, buying large amounts of food takes a while to repackage, which can postpone delivery. So, we’ll do two more delivery cycles. 6 families next week, then another 6 families after that.
On Fundly, there’s still 20 days left to our Campaign. So if we receive more campaign contributions, we’ll continuing delivery food until the funds/donations are exhausted.
Thank you again to all of our supporters! We appreciate all of your help!
I’ll keep you posted with our next update soon!