Disaster Relief

When an earthquake and the resulting aftershocks strike an impoverished community, earthquake recovery efforts become essential and long term.

The United States Geological Survey estimates that there are 500,000 detectable earthquakes in the world each year; 100,000 of those shake the Earth's surface enough to be felt, and 100 of them are major earthquakes causing significant damage and loss of life.

Compassion works in many countries affected by earthquake disasters and can quickly step in to effectively meet the immediate needs for shelter, food and medical care at the family level.

As with the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, Compassion also helps with long-term relief and recovery needs to identify and eliminate earthquake hazards and help with future preparedness, if tectonic plates shift again.

Real-Life Help

A 7.8 magnitude earthquake rocked the coast of Ecuador on April 16, 2016, killing more than 600 people, including three Compassion children and 13 of their siblings and caregivers. More than 16,600 others throughout the region suffered injuries.

Dastin, at just 6 years old, was one of those affected. His family’s home was destroyed in the quake. His parents and siblings found themselves homeless, and the only material possessions they owned were the clothes they were wearing. While they were thankful their lives were spared, their livelihood and possessions were lost among the debris.

Compassion responded with disaster relief and recovery efforts to care for 9,448 Compassion children and their families, as well as church partners and staff that were impacted. Dastin’s family received food and supplies, and his father’s motorbike was repaired so he could resume work. Compassion also provided a new shelter for Dastin and his family.

a family sitting outside a home

are concentrated in just five countries

live in Africa

live in rural areas

Source: World Bank and The Brookings Institution

a building destroyed by an earthquake

Where Will My Money Go?

Donations made to Compassion’s Disaster Relief Fund help make critical interventions possible following earthquakes, hurricanes and cyclones, landslides and flooding, volcanic eruptions, wildfires, tsunamis, and other severe weather and natural disasters.

These interventions may include:

  • Essential food and water supplies, temporary shelter, personal and household items, and school supplies.
  • Emergency medical supplies to treat injuries, sanitation needs and treatment coordination.
  • Replacement of lost household items, educational supplies and items a family needs to earn income.
  • Vocational training.
  • Counseling and spiritual support for staff and their families and for children who have been orphaned or who live in other highly vulnerable circumstances due to earthquakes.
  • Infrastructure reconstruction for affected staff, beneficiaries and church partners.

Contributions to the Disaster Relief Fund are also able to help during medical emergencies, such as the Ebola outbreak in West Africa and the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic.

Any funds raised beyond what is needed for specific earthquake disasters may be used for other disaster relief needs.

Give With Confidence

With Compassion, your donation is used wisely to help children around the world.

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Trusted Charity Since 1952

Have Questions About Compassion and How We Work?

Donating to a charity is an important decision. So when you’re passionate about a cause and want to make a difference, we encourage you to do your research. Compassion is 100% committed to financial integrity, stewardship and using each dollar wisely. If you have any questions about Compassion or exactly how your donation will be used, please don’t hesitate to contact us.


Please call us at 800-336-7676, Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. MT, to speak with a Compassion representative.