Project Blog Posts:

Ecuador 2016

Clowns Without Borders has confirmed an emergency project to Ecuador to support earthquake relief from May 23 to June 8, 2016. Over the past month, a tremendous aid effort has worked towards earthquake relief. We are honored to be part of the restoration, in partnership with Fundación Global Smile-Ecuador and local authority Prefectura del Guayas.

We’ll be working in Manabi, the most devastated area, and stationed in Guayaquil on the off days. Our four amazing artists are Julia Register (NYC), Andres Aguilar (Mexico City), Gabriela Sigaud Winters (Sao Paolo, Brazil), and Erwan Gronier (French living in Colombia). The artists will be on the ground May 23- June 8th.

Ecuador suffered a magnitude 7.8 earthquake on April 16, 2016. The severe earthquake struck the northwestern part of the country, killing 660 people and injuring more than 16,000. Two strong aftershocks of magnitudes 6.7 and 6.8 occurred on Wednesday, May 18.

USGS map image of April 18, 2016 Ecuador earthquake epicenter.
USGS map image of April 18, 2016, Ecuador earthquake epicenter.

7,000 buildings are destroyed, including the entire shopping district of Tarqui and widespread damage across Manabi province. An estimated 25,000 people are living in temporary shelters. According to the USGS Ecuador last experienced an earthquake of this power in 1906. An 8.8 magnitude tremor struck off the coasts of Ecuador and Colombia setting off a tsunami that went as far west as Japan and as far north as San Francisco.

Clowns Without Borders is moving forward with this project because we are working in close partnership with local authorities and Global Smiles to ensure that all of our activities are safe for the artists and the public. Our artists are participating in disaster preparedness training. When working in a region in a current state of emergency, it is even more important that we work in solidarity with those already trusted and working in the communities affected by the crisis.

We will share updates on the activities of the clowns on our website and social media. However, we will be limiting the frequency of live updates from the field. Our primary concerns are for the safety of the team and citizens of Ecuador. We will not show images that are sensitive or inappropriate. We will not compromise the team’s safety or those with whom they are sharing moments of laughter and zany fun. Sharing live updates will be limited because current circumstances make everyone extra vulnerable.

Please support this project by visiting the Donate page. Your contribution will help cover the expenses of airfare, lodging, and food for the four artists donating their time to this critical project. Thank you.

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