Although the Galapagos Islands are far removed from the zone that was affected by the devastating 16 April earthquake, its residents have been gathering aid to send.
Since the early morning hours of 17 April, the communities on the five populated islands (San Cristóbal, Santa Cruz, Baltra, Floreana and Isabela) have been gathering material aid donations in public parks and institutions. Included in the efforts are the Galapagos National Park, the Galapagos Naturalist Guides Association, and local tour operators, hotels, churches and schools.
On 19 April, the National Park service shipped donations from Isabela and Floreana islands to Santa Cruz Island. Ecuadorian Air Force planes are delivering the supplies from the airports on San Cristóbal and Baltra (which services Santa Cruz Island) to make it to the continent. Already over three tons of the island’s aid have been sent to Ecuador’s Pacific coast.
The Galapagos Islands was not affected by the 7.8 earthquake that occurred near Pedernales on the Ecuadorian continent, as the islands are on a separate tectonic plate. The Army’s Oceanic Institute had issued a tsunami advisory, stating that waves were expected to be less than a meter. (After an earthquake of a 7.0 or greater intensity, it is customary to issue a tsunami warning.)
Many Galapagos residents have family members that live in the affected coastal communities on the continent.
You may follow the Galapagans’ solidarity actions at: #GalápagosSolidario.
If you also wish to directly assist those affected the Ecuadorian Red Cross is receiving donations in the following account:
Bank: Banco Pichincha
Account number: 3462520104
Account name: Fondo de Emergencia
Beneficiary: Cruz Roja Ecuatoriana – Quito
The funds will be destined to provide temporary shelter for those affected and for continuing search and rescue operations.