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Guatemala volcano: Order of Malta first aiders at the scene

Three shelters and two mobile clinics on duty for so many displaced

Guatemala City, 8 June 2018

Guatemala volcano - aid for victim in Order of Malta temporary shelter

Guatemala volcano – aid for victim in Order of Malta temporary shelterThe two eruptions of the Fuego volcano on 3 June sent searingly hot clouds of volcanic ash and gases into the air, and created pyroclastic flows – a deadly combination, resulting in the deaths of over 100, hundreds of injured or missing, thousands evacuated.

The Order of Malta’s Guatemalan Association intervened immediately and is assisting over 500 displaced persons.

Guatemala volcano - the Order of Malta's mobile clinic

Guatemala volcano – the Order of Malta’s mobile clinic

In the diocese of Escuintla, the area most affected, the Order of Malta is now managing three of the 33 temporary shelters. Two of the Order’s mobile clinics are providing medical treatment and psychological support to those who have lost family members and homes; and essential supplies of food and hygiene kits have been distributed.

It is estimated that the displaced will be in the temporary structures for nine to twelve months.

Malteser International, the Order of Malta’s global relief agency, is also providing emergency aid to victims and has started to raise funds.

In a letter to the President of Guatemala, Jimmy Morales, and to the Order’s Guatemalan Association, the Grand Master of the Order of Malta, Fra’ Giacomo Dalla Torre, has sent his deepest sympathy to the victims and the country. 

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The mission of the Order of Malta is inspired by its tradition of ‘Tuitio Fidei et Obsequium Pauperum', to assist the poor and the sick, and bear witness to the Christian faith.


The Sovereign Order of Malta is a sovereign subject of international law. The Order - which is based in Rome, in via Condotti - has its own Government, an independent magistracy, and bilateral diplomatic relations with 110 countries.


The Order of St John of Jerusalem is one of the oldest institutions of Western and Christian civilisation. Present in Palestine in around 1048, it is a lay religious Order, traditionally of military, chivalrous, noble nature.