Impacto’s Compassion Ministry’s Emergency Relief provides assistance to those who are hungry, sick, poor, and facing urgent needs. The people we minister to are very poor and often have times when they do not have the money to buy food to feed their families. The simplest medical or dental needs are neglected because any money that is earned goes towards food.
When a family member dies, the family may not have enough money to purchase a coffin. By law, the funeral must take place within 24 hours of death; it is far too expensive to pay for embalming. Clothing is often worn and passed down through a family until it is so threadbare it doesn’t even resemble what it was originally, never mind the stains. Shoes, if owned, are worn or passed down until there is no sole left, toes have punctured the end, holes are left where heels used to be, and shoelaces are a distant memory. Children are required to wear tennis shoes for gym class so if a child has no tennis shoes, school is not an option. If families are referred to Impacto, we are able to help meet some of these immediate needs.
Food bags are distributed to the hungry and help to alleviate death due to starvation. Excessive illnesses needing special medications or treatments are impossible for the majority of families so when a family is referred to us, we help with those needs. We are able to donate medicine, sometimes it is as simple as ibuprofen, or tums. Other times we need to help buy the medicine. In order to be helped they must see the doctor first and show us their prescription. We also help with traveling, sometimes by ambulance, to Guatemala City to see a specialist and/or get lab-work, or a special exam done.
When hurricanes, mudslides, earthquakes, or volcanic eruptions occur, Impacto is able to help provide food, water, blankets, cots, hygiene items, and many other needs produced by these natural disasters.
In every situation, Impacto not only supplies physical needs but takes time to listen to concerns, pray, and share the Gospel with individuals and families. This is our number one goal when helping through an emergency need or situation.