San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

C.R. Earthquake Victims To Get Building Materials

Fifty families that suffered damage to their homes in Santa Bárbara de Heredia, north of San José, when a magnitude 6.2 earthquake struck early this year will receive ¢30 million (more than $50,000) worth of building materials from the National Emergency Committee (CNE). The announcement was made Monday by CNE.

The donation, including cement, building blocks, wood and rebar, is the first of its kind in this incidence from the commission.

Although nearly nine months may seem like ages to wait for the first donation of building materials, CNE spokesman Reinaldo Carballo said that the government has been assisting families and neighborhoods in other ways.

“There have been a series of actions that have helped these areas,” Carballo said. “There has been work done to the aqueducts, families have been relocated, roads have been worked on. This donation is just the latest in our efforts.”

In spite of the effort, a July report released by the government’s rebuilding commission indicated that only 40 of the 1,000 displaced families have been successfully relocated. Carballo said that number is misleading because some families refused to relocate.

The rebuilding commission estimates that the earthquake caused more than $35 million in housing damage.

The CNE said it plans donations of building materials in the upcoming months for Alajuela and Poás, northwest of San José; Heredia, north of San José; and Grecia, west of the capital city.

Habitat for Humanity recently completed construction on 13 homes in Alajuela for families who lost their houses as a result of the earthquake.

–Mike McDonald


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