Tent Schools International responds to massive tremors in Mexico

Mexico (MNN) – It’s been over a month since a pair of earthquakes in Mexico killed hundreds of people and destroyed thousands of homes. While relief efforts are well underway, the trauma many have faced will require a much lengthier healing process.

(Photo courtesy of Tent Schools International)

On September 8, a magnitude 8.1 quake struck just off the southern coast, killing over 60 people. Less than two weeks later, a 7.1 magnitude quake struck the capital city, killing over 200 and destroying thousands of buildings.

Tent Schools International is one organization working to give children, specifically, a sense of hope and normalcy. It recently developed a crisis response fund to allow them to respond quickly to disasters and ensure that children continue to receive an education.

“First of all, there’s the rescue and recovery phases, and when that phase is over, I’m speaking in our case here, you have thousands and thousands of children without anywhere to go, particularly after suffering the trauma of seeing whole villages wiped away, or in the earthquake, buildings, even schools, crumbling upon some of their classmates,” Tent Schools’ Dale Dieleman says.

“We have requests, for example, from Mexico, following the two major earthquakes on September 7 and 19, where more than 5,000 schools were affected in some of the poorest states within Mexico…They are asking us, or calling out to us, and saying, ‘Can you just supply some funds where we can buy some materials to put up a temporary school shelter for children so they can try to find some normalcy in their life, even with all the rubble and everything else that’s surrounding them, until the reconstruction of schools can take place, which could be a very long time?’”

(Photo courtesy of Tent Schools International)

Often times, crisis situations can soften even the hardest of hearts. Dieleman says Tent Schools is motivated by the love of Jesus, and they’re making sure that love is evident to the people they serve.

“We’ve let it be known, particularly to the people who are requesting in this particular situation, that we are not only there to try to raise funds and awareness within the donor community to respond to this, but we’re also reaching out to them in prayer,” Dieleman says.

“We’re there to support them as the hands and feet of Jesus.

“In some of the correspondence we were getting after that, we were also discovering that they too are fellow believers and saying, ‘Yes please join us in prayer.’ So we’re developing sort of a prayer chain to be very supportive. I think that is also key to the whole thing.”

Tent Schools is helping give people hope, but total healing is a long ways off. Pray for these families as they look to rebuild their lives.

On November 28, Tent Schools is celebrating Giving Tuesday in their own special way. This year, the focus is on raising support for Mexico releif. You can learn more, here.