Responding to flooding in Paraguay

Aid on the ground for 3,000 families as winter begins

Thousands of families in Paraguay’s capital city, Asunción, have been driven from their homes after devastating flooding.

ShelterBox is working to provide ShelterKits, mosquito nets, blankets, and solar lights to 3,000 families affected.

Many of the poorest families lived near the river and have been the most affected by the rains and flooding.

The floodwater is not expected to recede anytime soon, so families may not be able to get back to their homes until the end of the year.

It is now the beginning of winter in Paraguay and these families are without adequate shelter, without many of their belongings, and the weather is turning cold.

These families need your help today to ensure their safety until they can return home.

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What happened?

Since March, torrential rains have been falling across Paraguay causing the overflow of the Paraguay River, leading to severe flooding.

20,000 people were evacuated from their homes while many more were displaced or self-evacuated. Approximately 70,000 people have been affected by these heavy rains and rising waters.

The unusually heavy rain has been linked to the climate pattern El Niño, a natural phenomenon that occurs every few years and results in the slight warming of the surface waters of the Pacific.

El Niño can have a devastating effect on weather patterns around the world. For Paraguay, the warm water usually triggers above-average rain.


Small Building standing in thigh-high water

Myrta's Story

Mirta lives with her husband and younger daughter in a temporary settlement in Asuncion, Paraguay. They moved there after severe flooding forced them from their homes.

Mirta and her husband received a shelter kit with the necessary tools to rebuild their homes once the floodwaters recede. She told us it meant a great deal to have their own as, before they had received the aid, they had to borrow other people’s tools.

Mirta also said that she really liked the grey blankets because they are soft, “they are thick and they don’t make you scratch.”

“I'm tired of always having to move each time there are floods, but we don't have another option. We simply can't afford to buy a home out of the flood-affected areas.”

How is ShelterBox Responding?

We’re working with our trusted partners, Habitat for Humanity and the Paraguayan Red Cross, to provide vital aid to 3,000 families in Asunción.

We’re also speaking to local authorities and the Rotary Club of Asunción to better understand the situation and identify the most vulnerable communities in Paraguay’s capital city.

Families will receive ShelterKits with strong tarpaulins and the tools they need to build sturdy shelters. Having a home means that families can start feeling safer, warmer and more protected.

Mosquito nets will be provided to families as a way to protect from deadly diseases. Stagnant floodwaters create a breeding site for mosquitoes, increasing the risk of disease outbreaks like malaria.

Families will also be given blankets to keep warm during the coldest months of the year, as well as solar lights to allow them to move around when there’s no electricity.

ShelterKit laid out with tools


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Previous Responses in Paraguay

Ramon smiling in sun outside his home

We have responded to flooding in Paraguay four times in our history, supporting families with the essential tools and aid items they needed to rebuild.

Your support helped people like Ramon, whose home was badly damaged after the 2014 floods. Ramon and his wife had to leave everything behind and move to a temporary shelter, without knowing when they would return.

Using his ShelterKit, Ramon was able to go back to his home after the floodwaters receded and repair it. Moving back to a permanent home meant that he and his family could be together again, under the warmth of a sturdy shelter. He said:

It was great that we were given the ShelterKit. The ShelterKit was really what we needed and we are very thankful.”

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