IOM: '86% Lost Sources of Income After Deadly Volcano Eruption in Guatemala'

IOM has conducted surveys to identify the main needs of people living in shelters after the volcanic eruption. Photo: IOM/2018 

IOM has conducted surveys to identify the main needs of people living in shelters after the volcanic eruption. Photo: IOM/2018 

Guatemala City – Today (07/19), IOM, the UN Migration Agency, reported that 86 per cent of people affected by Volcán de Fuego's eruption last month, lost their sources of income or their businesses. According to surveys conducted by IOM, 43 per cent were left without land to carry out agricultural activities and 13 per cent say they intend to migrate irregularly.

To address the emergency arising from the eruption, IOM has been working in close coordination with the Government of Guatemala. Two rounds of surveys have been conducted to evaluate the characteristics of the affected population. Additionally, actions have been taken to improve assistance to those in shelters, and to prevent human trafficking.

According to the last Survey on Expectations and Livelihoods, 41 per cent of the people interviewed need housing, work (25 per cent), land for agriculture (18 per cent) and economic aid (7 per cent). In addition, 9 per cent need training, scholarships, furniture, health supplies, among other services.

The information was gathered through interviews with people located in shelters through the Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM). It is already available to government authorities, United Nations agencies, international organizations and diplomatic corps, to provide a comprehensive response to the affected population’s needs.

The results have shown that all shelters have acceptable security perimeters and clinics for primary medical care. However, all active shelters are subject to some degree of vulnerability, particularly in the areas of water, sanitation, protection, and health. Therefore, IOM will administer USD 319,980 for the improvement of infrastructure conditions for shelters through the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF).

At the same time, to prevent crimes of sexual violence and trafficking in people in shelters, the IOM Mesoamerica Program has provided informative materials for parents, children and adolescents in coordination with the Secretariat against Sexual Violence, Exploitation and Trafficking in Persons (SVET), as well as with the support of the Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration of the United States Department of State.

IOM has made available to the public a web page where the data, statistics, infographics and most relevant information from the affected areas will be constantly updated. You can access it here.

For more information, please contact Melissa Vega from IOM Guatemala, Email: or Alba Miriam Amaya from IOM El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, Email: