Guatemala has been left reeling by the most violent and devastating volcanic eruption for 44 years.

The Fuego volcano has spewed lava, ash, rocks and deadly hot gas onto hillside villages, killing at least 100 people. More than 12,000 people have been forced to flee their homes, whilst the entire community of El Rodeo is said to be buried.

We have a team in Guatemala working to understand the problems that families are facing right now, and to see how we can help with emergency shelter aid to help families start to rebuild their lives.

Tonight families in Guatemala, and other families around the world who have been affected by disaster, will have nowhere to sleep. They will have no shelter and no safety. Some will have lost everything.


The village of El Rodeo was right in the volcano’s path.

69 people are now known to have died, and more are feared to be buried under ash and lava.

Guatemala City’s airport has been closed, and the President has declared three days of national mourning.

There are fears for residents of another village La Libertad, as the lava has made it inaccessible.


We have aid in Panama and teams on standby to help families who’ve lost everything.

As daylight arrives in Guatemala the search and rescue mission will start in earnest.

It’s too soon to know whether our emergency shelter will be needed.

However, we’re in contact with colleagues and Rotary partners in the country to understand whether and how we can help.

ShelterBox Operations Coordinator Anna Dixie says:

This disaster is still in the emergency phase, and accurate information on the number of people affected will follow once the situation has been fully assessed. At a later stage, we will know whether ShelterBox aid can be helpful. But with Guatemala’s main airport closed access will be one of the initial challenges.


ShelterBox has deployed to Guatemala on four occasions.

The first response was a flood in 2005, then another flood and a tropical storm in 2010, and an earthquake in 2012.

Watch this space as more details emerge of Guatemala’s current situation.