Consecutive days of heavy rain on top of an unusually heavy rainy season have caused the worst floods and landslides in Peru in decades, leaving hundreds of thousands of people in urgent need of assistance. The floods and landslides have claimed 85 lives, with a further 20 people still missing. Flood waters have also caused extensive damage, including to houses, medical and educational centres, and crops. The Peruvian Red Cross is coordinating relief efforts closely with the Peruvian government.

All photos by Fernando Gandarillas/ IFRC



A street in Huarmey, Peru, covered in mud and debris once flood waters have receded. Homes, offices, and infrastructure have been damaged and basic services have been disrupted. Businesses have to be conducted through the mud.

Torrents of flood water and mud swept through the town of Huarmey, allowing people no time to secure their important belongings. Many families have lost everything.

Benito Morante is a volunteer and the president of the Red Cross branch in Huarmey province. He is also among the thousands who have been affected by the floods. His home was inundated by the mudslide. “Everything vanished in a matter of minutes, it did not give us any time,” he said, distressed.

Benito’s pharmacy and office, which he uses to provide services, such as vaccination and measure blood pressure, were also destroyed. He has lost many of the medicines and implements required to help the people in his community.

Despite the challenging situation, Benito continues to lead the response of the Red Cross branch in Huarmey, delivering assistance to those who have been most affected by the floods.  “We have to help, no matter what happens, and if we have a chance to do so, we must do it with strength,” he said. The Red Cross is providing psychosocial support, health care, water and sanitation assistance to communities affected in this area.